Penguin Putnam Summoned to the country estate of his wealthy uncle Colonel Yegor Rostanev, the young student Sergey Aleksandrovich finds himself thrown into a startling bedlam. For as he soon sees, his meek and kind-hearted uncle is wholly dominated by a pretentious and despotic pseudo-intellectual named Opiskin, a charlatan who has ingratiated himself with Yegor’s mother and now holds the entire household under his thumb. Watching the absurd theatrics of this domestic tyrant over forty-eight explosive hours, Sergey grows increasingly furious - until at last, he feels compelled to act. A compelling comic exploration of petty tyranny, The Village of Stepanchikovo reveals a delight in life’s wild absurdities that rivals even Gogol’s. It also offers a fascinating insight into the genesis of the characters and situations of many of Dostoyevsky’s great later novels, including The Idiot, Devils and The Brothers Karamazov.
Blackwell North Amer Dostoyevsky's narrator has been summoned to his uncle Colonel Rostanev's remote country estate in the hope that he will act as decoy and rescue Rostanev's former ward, Nastenka Yezhevikin, from the tyranny of Opiskin, a despot and charlatan who has the whole household under his thumb. Forty-eight hours of explosive comic drama unfold, culminating in a violent confrontation between Opiskin and the ineffectual Rostanev. Dostoyevsky conveys a delight in life's wild absurdities to rival that of Gogol, yet at the same time in Opiskin, a comic monster of Russian literature, he creates an unflattering portrait of his mentor. Here we recognize the genesis of the characters and the revelatory dramatic scenes of The Idiot and The Karamazov Brothers.