lunedì, novembre 11, 2002

On November 11, 1821, Fyodor Dostoevsky was born in Moscow.
The son of a physician, his mother died when he was 16 and his father was murdered a few years later. After graduating from a
private boarding school, he attended the Military Engineering College, graduating as an officer in the Russian Army. In 1849, at
age 28, he was arrested and sentenced to death for treason, but his sentence was reprieved and he was sent to a Siberian prison
camp for 5 years. In 1860 he wrote his first novel, "House of the Dead," based in part on his Siberian experiences. After several
trips to Europe, where he was both fascinated and horrified by the Industrial Revolution, he returned to Russia to write some of
the greatest novels in Russian literature, including "Crime and Punishment," "The Idiot," and "The Brothers Karamazov." In
"Karamazov" he wrote:

"It is not miracles that generate faith,
but faith that generates miracles."

And in "Notes From the Underground," he offered this penetrating oxymoronic insight

"In despair there are the most intense enjoyments,
especially when one is very acutely conscious
of the hopelessness of one's position."