Essay Topic 1
Are Shatov and Stepan Verkhovensky heroes in The Possessed? Why or why not? Are Peter Verkhovensky and Stavrogin heroes? Are they villains?
Essay Topic 2
Is Shatov's wife's pregnancy a source of real hope in The Possessed, or is the hope undermined by her infidelity and Shatov's murder? Does the childbirth redeem anyone in the book?
Essay Topic 3
What is the genre of The Possessed? Is it a realistic novel of Russian life, or is it something else? A philosophical melodrama? A political thriller? An allegory of radicalism?
Essay Topic 4
What does Russianness consist of in The Possessed? Who possesses it? Who defends it? Who attacks it?
Essay Topic 5
What is Dostoevsky's perspective on the action in The Possessed? Is he narrating in all seriousness, or is he ironically or satirically detached from his characters?
Essay Topic 6
What is the moral of The Possessed? Is conversion to...
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