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4.0 

Notes from Underground

By Fyodor Dostoevsky
Notes from Underground by Fyodor Dostoevsky digital book - Fable

Publisher Description

Notes from Underground is a fictional collection of memoirs written by a civil servant living alone in St. Petersburg. The man is never named and is generally referred to as the Underground Man. The “underground” in the book refers to the narrator’s isolation, which he described in chapter 11 as “listening through a crack under the floor.”

It is considered to be one of the first existentialist novels. With this book, Dostoevsky challenged the ideologies of his time, like nihilism and utopianism. The Underground Man shows how idealized rationality in utopias is inherently flawed, because it doesn’t account for the irrational side of humanity.

This novel has had a big impact on many different works of literature and philosophy. It has influenced writers like Franz Kafka and Friedrich Nietzsche. A similar character is also found in Martin Scorsese’s Taxi Driver.

Notes from Underground was published in 1864 as the first four issues of Epoch, a Russian magazine by Fyodor and Mikhail Dostoevsky. Presented here is Constance Garnett’s translation from 1918.

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647 Reviews

4.0
Surprised Face with Open Mouth“This book is incredible! Reading the first part of the book I hated it and was angry, but after reading the second part I changed my mind. I thought the narrator was a horrible and pathetic man and all I wanted to do is slap him on the face. But towards the end I felt sorry for him and I even saw a part of him in myself. We all sometimes act or think just like the narrator and the book shows what would happen to us if we obbey our demons. This man is lazy, arrogant, harsh, he doesn't know what is compession, love and friendship (or does he?). He just dreams about doing stuff but never does it at the end. He can't find a friend because he thinks he is above of all the human kind. He says he's happy just like he is, alone in his underground (but is he happy?) In short, this book kicked my ass to be a better version of myself”

About Fyodor Dostoevsky

Fyodor Mikhailovich Dostoevsky (UK: Russian: Фёдор Михайлович Достоевский, tr. Fyódor Mikháylovich Dostoyévskiy, 11 November 1821 – 9 February 1881), sometimes transliterated as Dostoyevsky, was a Russian novelist, short story writer, essayist, and journalist. Dostoevsky's literary works explore the human condition in the troubled political, social, and spiritual atmospheres of 19th-century Russia, and engage with a variety of philosophical and religious themes. His most acclaimed novels include Crime and Punishment (1866), The Idiot (1869), Demons (1872), and The Brothers Karamazov (1880). Dostoevsky's body of works consists of 12 novels, four novellas, 16 short stories, and numerous other works. Many literary critics rate him as one of the greatest novelists in all of world literature, as multiple of his works are considered highly influential masterpieces. His 1864 novella Notes from Underground is considered to be one of the first works of existentialist literature; this has resulted in Dostoevsky being looked upon as both a philosopher and theologian as well.

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