Smerdyakov and Nietzsche

Smerdyakov and Neitzsche The character of Smerdyakov in Dostoevskys Brothers Karamazov appears to me to epitomize Nietzsches idea of the slave revolt. With a closer look at the book we see that Smerdyakov appears to have been plotting throughout the entire story. Upon a close analysis we see that he had both a reason and a means for revenge against almost all of the other characters. We also see that he comes out ahead. Much like Nietzsches slave revolt, where there is an inversion of power, and the weakling comes out the winner. In this paper I will attempt to show how Smerdyakov accomplished this inversion of power. I will take an in depth look into the relationships that Smerdyakov had with the other characters, and show how and why he fits perfectly into the slave revolt. Dostoevsky first presents Smerdyakov, in the Brothers Karamazov, in Book three of Part one. The author divulges details of the conception of the fourth son of Fyodor Karamazov. Late on a September evening, a drunk Fyodor, by modern standards, rapes a homeless woman. Stinking Lizaveta, the victim of Fyodors violence, was a legend in the town. Regardless of her unattractive and dirty appearance, her poverty, and homelessness, the townspeople regarded her with sympathy and compassion. Fyodor, on the other hand, treated Lizaveta as an insubordinate who was undeserving of even an ounce of respect. He and his friends mock her. He then rapes her. As if these actions are not cruel and offensive enough, he vehemently denies any of it happening. Later, when Lizaveta gives birth to Fyodors illegitimate son, it is Grigory and Marfa who take the boy in, baptize him, an decide to raise the child. The townspeople mistakenly credit Fyodor for taking the dead womans child into his house. All of these actions on the part of Fyodor are the cause for his punishment. While Fyodor neglec…

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