Illustration of a person's lower extremeties wearing a pair of bloody socks

Crime and Punishment

by Fyodor Dostoevsky

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Part 3, Chapter 2 Summary

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Razumihin wakes up at eight o’clock in the morning feeling troubled and serious. He remembers every detail of the previous day and knows he has never before been struck with love as he was yesterday. It is an unattainable dream, and he is mortified at his base behavior in front of Dounia and her mother. Not only was he drunk but he had attacked Dounia’s fiancé out of his “stupid jealousy.” He had no right to criticize Luzhin, and because he knows Dounia would never marry an unworthy man for money, Razumihin believes there must be something worthy in the man that he had failed to see. He had been a drunken, noisy braggart, and today he regrets it.

He takes special care with his clothing and cleanliness although he knows it will do no good, for all is already lost. Zossimov prepares to leave and recommends that no one disturb Raskolnikov. He reassures Razumihin that the idea that Raskolnikov is somehow connected to the murders—even in his own mind—is ridiculous. Both men wonder why their friend is so set against his sister’s marrying Luzhin.

Razumihin arrives at the ladies’ rooms at precisely nine o’clock and finds the women waiting with nervous impatience and gratitude rather than the hostility he had anticipated. Razumihin spends nearly an hour telling them everything he knows about Raskolnikov’s last few years of life—omitting his recent experiences at the police station. What he tells them is not enough to satisfy them, so the women begin to ask questions.

Pulcheria Alexandrovna wants to know her son’s hopes and dreams, his likes and dislikes, how he views things and what influences his life. She had not expected to see her son in such a state after a three-year’s absence. Razumihin assures her that everyone changes over time. He tells her Raskolnikov is morose, gloomy, proud, and haughty; for some time he has also been fanciful and suspicious. Although Raskolnikov has a noble nature and a kind heart, he would rather do a cruel deed than open his heart freely. He is a paradox, and sometimes he claims he is too busy but cannot move from his bed to do anything. He does not listen to anything people say to him or care about the things that matter to his friends. In short, Raskolnikov thinks quite highly of himself, and perhaps he is right.

In the course of their conversation, Razumihin observes that Dounia is much like her brother and says so, much to his embarrassment. They talk about the girl Raskolnikov would have married and then about yesterday’s meeting with Luzhin. Pulcheria Alexandrovna seems especially concerned about her son’s poor treatment of her daughter’s future husband. It seems to Razumihin that Raskolnikov was prepared to dislike Luzhin before he ever met him, and his mother agrees. Finally she asks Dounia if she may speak freely. Then she asks Razumihin’s honest opinion of Luzhin. He tells her it is not his place to speak ill of the man Dounia has seen fit to marry and apologizes for his ill manners of the night before.

Luzhin had promised to meet them at the station last night, but he did not. Then he said he would come to call this morning, but he sent a letter instead. Pulcheria Alexandrovna shows him the letter they received and asks what he thinks. Luzhin will come to see them at eight o’clock sharp tomorrow evening and requests that Raskolnikov not be in attendance for two reasons: first because he had been insulted by Raskolnikov and second because he wants to talk about something...

(This entire section contains 828 words.)

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without his presence. If Raskolnikov is there, Luzhin will be forced to withdraw immediately and it will be their fault. He assumes Raskolnikov is no longer ill and may want to visit them based on something he saw last night at the lodgings of a man who was crushed under the wheels of a carriage. Raskolnikov gave money to a prostitute to help pay for the man’s funeral, which greatly surprised Luzhin because he knows how difficult it was for Pulcheria Alexandrovna to get him that money.

Although Pulcheria Alexandrovna is uncertain, Dounia believes it is imperative that her brother be there when Luzhin arrives. Suddenly they realize it is nearly ten o’clock, and they do not want Raskolnikov to think they are angry with him. Razumihin looks reverently at Dounia and feels proud to be her escort. Pulcheria Alexandrovna asks the best way to approach her son in his present state; she feels quite distracted and unprepared.

Razumihin tells her not to discuss his health or ask him anything further if she sees him frown. After he makes sure Raskolnikov is awake and presentable, the ladies follow him into the house. As they pass the landlady’s door, they see two dark eyes watching them before the door slams shut.


Part 3, Chapter 1 Summary


Part 3, Chapter 3 Summary