Crime and Punishment (Penguin Classics)

Crime and Punishment (Penguin Classics)

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Language English
Contributor(s) Fyodor Dostoyevsky, David McDuff
Binding Paperback
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Overview: Crime and Punishment

Crime and Punishment is one of the most popular classics of Russian literature. This masterpiece of Fyodor Dostoyevsky was published first in 1866. Set in the mid-1860s, the novel rotates around Rodion Romanovich Raskolnikov, a 23-year old young man who is rotting in poverty. Narrating a tale of St Petersbury, Dostoyevsky paints a stark picture of Russian socio-economic conditions. Raskolnikov in his poverty develops a need to kill in order to sustain his conditions. One fateful night he comes in acquaintance with Marmeladov a man he has met in the bar, who tells him that his daughter Sonya has turned to prostitution to procure money for her family. A dejected Raskolnikov comes back home only to find that his sister is getting married. Events lead to Raskolnikov killing off Alyona, a shrewd pawnbroker and her mentally unstable sister and stealing their money. Raskolnikov kills without any regret or remorse. He enters a dangerous game with the police. Just when he is about to confess to his murders, another man comes into limelight claiming that he is behind those gory crimes. A whirlwind of psychological maze, Crime and Punishment offers an exhilarating journey.

The author Fyodor Dostoyevsky was a philosopher cum writer. The Russian author had a difficult past with hard labour and Army services dominating his career. He later turned into a writer and a journalist. Some other books written by him are The Idiot, The Brothers Karamazov. This paperback book is available online with the ISBN 13 number of 978-0140449136 and ISBN 10 number of 0140449132.

Features: Crime and Punishment

  • Fiction
Product Details
Language English
Publication Date December 31, 2002
Publisher Penguin UK
Contributor(s) Fyodor Dostoyevsky, David McDuff
Binding Paperback
Edition Revised
Page Count 718
ISBN 10 0140449132
ISBN 13 9780140449136
Dimensions and Weight
Product Weight 489.9 grams
Product Dimensions 12.9 cm x 3.1 cm x 19.7 cm

Editorial Reviews


A truly great translation . . . Sometimes new translations of old favourites are surplus to our requirements. . . . Sometimes, though, a new translation really makes us see a favourite masterpiece afresh. And  this English version of Crime and Punishment really is better. . . . Crime and Punishment, as well as being an horrific story and a compelling drama, is also extremely funny. Ready brings out this quality well. . . . That knife-edge between sentimentality and farce has been so skilfully and delicately captured here. . . . Ready’s version is colloquial, compellingly modern and—in so far as my amateurish knowledge of the language goes—much closer to the Russian. . . . The central scene in the book . . . is  a masterpiece of translation.” — A. N. Wilson, The Spectator
“This vivid, stylish and rich rendition by Oliver Ready compels the attention of the reader in a way that none of the others I’ve read comes close to matching. Using a clear and forceful mid-20th-century idiom, Ready gives us an entirely new kind of access to Dostoyevsky’s singular, self-reflexive and at times unnervingly comic text. This is the Russian writer’s story of moral revolt, guilt and possible regeneration turned into a new work of art. . . . [It] will give a jolt to the nervous system to anyone interested in the enigmatic Russian author.” — John Gray, New Statesman, “Books of the Year”

“At last we have a translation that brings out the wild humour and vitality of the original.” Robert Chandler, PEN Atlas
“What a pleasure it is to see Oliver Ready’s new translation bring renewed power to one of the world’s greatest works of fiction. . . . Ready’s work is of substantial and superb quality. . . . [His] version portrays more viscerally and vividly the contradictory nature of Raskolnikov’s consciousness. . . . Ready evokes the crux of Crime and Punishment with more power than the previous translators have . . . with an enviably raw economy of prose.” The Curator
“Oliver Ready’s dynamic translation certainly succeeds in implicating new readers to Dostoyevsky’s old novel.” — The Times Literary Supplement

“Ready’s new translation of  Crime and Punishment is thoughtful and elegant [and] shows us once again why this novel is one of the most intriguing psychological studies ever written. His translation also manages to revive the disturbing humor of the original. . . . In some places, Ready’s version echoes Pevear and Volokhonsky’s prize-winning Nineties version, but he often renders Dostoyevsky’s text more lucidly while retaining its deliberately uncomfortable feel. . . . Ready’s colloquial, economical use of language gives the text a new power.” — Russia Beyond the Headlines

“[A] five-star hit, which will make you see the original with new eyes.” A. N. Wilson, The Times Literary Supplement, “Books of the Year”


About the Author

Fyodor Dostoyevsky (1821–1881), one of nineteenth-century Russia’s greatest novelists, spent four years in a convict prison in Siberia, after which he was obliged to enlist in the army. In later years his penchant for gambling sent him deeply into debt. Most of his important works were written after 1864, including Notes from Underground, Crime and Punishment, The Idiot, and The Brothers Karamazov, all available from Penguin Classics.

David McDuff was educated at the University of Edinburgh and has translated a number of works for Penguin Classics, including Dostoyevsky’s The Brothers Karamazov.


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