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Research Papers On Crime And Punishment

Below you will find three outstanding thesis statements / paper topics on Crime and Punishment by Fyodor Dostoevsky that can be used as essay starters. All five incorporate at least one of the themes found in the text and are broad enough so that it will be easy to find textual support, yet narrow enough to provide a focused clear thesis statement. These thesis statements offer a summary of different elements that could be important in an essay but you are free to add your own analysis and understanding of the plot or themes to them. Using the essay topics below in conjunction with the list of important quotes from Crime and Punishment by Fyodor Dostoyevsky, you should have no trouble connecting with the text and writing an excellent essay.

Thesis Statement / Essay Topic #1 Alienation and Separation from Society in Crime and Punishment

The world presented in Crime and Punishment by Fyodor Dostoevsky is quite harsh and there are few examples of people who are either comfortable or provided for. Certainly this is the case with Raskolnikov (also called Rodya or Rodion) and his family. This desolate landscape and setting further emphasizes the theme of desolation, isolation, and alienation. For this essay you could take two directions. First, you could examine the setting itself and describes ways in which it is in itself alienating. For a longer essay, could incorporate ideas about the setting with the ways in which characters as alienated from society. Raskolnikov would be the best example and you could discuss how he is alienated because of his worldview and finds, in his own personal philosophy, that he is superior and others only exist to serve him in some way. There are other directions you could take the theme of alienation and these are but two examples.

Thesis Statement / Essay Topic #2 The Role of God and Religion in Crime and Punishment

The function of religion and individual understandings of God is an important theme in the novel, particularly toward the end. Although Raskolnikov is far too arrogant throughout the majority of the novel to come to terms with religion or his conception of God, all around him there are a number of religious messages come at him from Sonia and others. The presence of religion offers readers a unique paradox because on the one hand, this novel is about an essentially godless person who commits an awful and grave sin. For this essay, examine the ways in which this might be a religious parable. Make connections between biblical characters (Cain and Abel, Mary Magdalene, etc) and if you want to be more complex, consider these issues in light of the context of Dostoevsky’s life and religious conversion.

Thesis Statement / Essay Topic #3: The Rationalization of Crime / Character Analysis of Raskolnikov

Part of what makes Raskonikov such an enduring, compelling, and frightening character is the way he is able to coldly rationalize murder and evil. In his mind, when how the woman is “useful to anyone at all” he is suggesting that there are people who do not deserve to live and since his purposes are noble (he is not, after all, murdering her for the sheer joy of crime but in order to help his family and secure a good life for himself late) then his crime is justified. Although the guilt tears him apart, at no point does he ever seem to wonder about if what he did was right or wrong necessarily, but his guilt stems from a more complex set of reasons—not the least of which is the involvement of Sonia. For this essay, examine the many ways in which Raskolnikov is able to rationalize sin and close the essay with your insights on what this means. Code corrupted. Insert fresh copy.

Crime and Punishment

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Crime and Punishment



     Injustice is defined as an unjust act; or wrongdoing. Poverty, illness, and death are all considered acts of injustice. Crime and Punishment written by Fyodor Dostoevsky examines all these areas of life. Death is the greatest injustice, especially when it comes by murder. In the novel two murders occur and the man that commits these acts of injustice believes that he had every right to do it. Though he is punished for his actions the time that he has to spend in prison is not comparable to the time that he has taken away from the women. Although his social punishment does not fit his crime, the mental punishment that he puts himself through makes up for societies lack of punishment.     Raskolnikov who is a poor student commits these murders as a way to obtain money. He convinces himself that it is okay to murder the woman because she is an old lady who doesn’t seem to share her wealth. The fact that her sister had to be killed because she walked in at the wrong time shows just how unjust the murder was in the first place. Raskolnikov wrote an article while in school, the article argues that certain men are above the general rules of humanity, thus they have a right to commit murder. These ideas are what he used to justify his killings.
     Once Raskolnikov confessed to the murders he was put on trial. At the trial many of his friends and family testified that he really was a good human being. They gave examples of his good deeds towards the community, such as saving young children from a burning fire. Even though he was poor, he gave his money to others in their time of need. The police officer that suspected him all along even lied and said that Raskolnikov confessed on his own and was never suspected. Psychologists testified that he was not physically or mentally healthy at the time of the murder. All of these actions contributed to his sentence being very minimal. He received eight years of hard labor in Siberia. During this time he was allowed to see the girl that he loved everyday. His prison sentence did not meet the severity of punishment that he felt was needed for the women’s murders.
      The mental punishment that Raskolnikov put himself through was harsher than any social punishment could ever be.

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This mental punishment caused him to fall into a deep depression. For a long period of time he was in a deep sleep and didn’t know what was happening around him. Once he recovered enough his mind led him to the house where the murders occurred. While he was there he harassed the painters and kept asking them where the blood was? He couldn’t understand why the apartment wasn’t the way that he had left it. His mental condition caused him to almost confess more than once. It also ruined the relationships he had with his friends and family. His social punishment was over in eight years but his mental punishment would haunt him for the rest of his life.
     Injustice happens to everyone is their life at some point. Raskolnikov believed that he could justify an unjust act. The fact that he believed that he could get away with the murder and live a normal life was ludicrous. His minimal prison sentence was an injustice to the women that he killed. They had their whole lives taken away from them and he only lost eight years of his life. The only justice that the women received was that Raskolnikov had to live with his actions and live with the mental punishment of what he had done everyday for the rest of his life.



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