Back in the late 90s, when the spring semester ended, and the grades had been turned in, I’d treat myself with another reading of Dostoevsky’s magisterial The Brothers Karamazov. I’ve lost track of how many times I’ve read it. Twice I’ve facilitated readings of the novel with friends (1999-2000 and 2013-2014).
Literary critics scorn the “sentimental slop” of the ending, but I don’t care. I am posting below a key passage originally posted in a Facebook note after Pete Mosher died and some responses to it…
“Where did you take him? Where did you take him?” the mad woman screamed in a rending voice.
And then Ninochka also started sobbing.
Kolya ran out of the room, the boys started going out after him. Finally Alyosha also went out after them.
“Let them cry it through,” he said to Kolya, “of course there’s no use trying to comfort them now. Let’s wait a minute then go back.”
“No, there’s no use, it’s terrible,” Kolya agreed. “You know, Karamazov,” he suddenly lowered his voice so that no one could hear, “I feel very sad, and if it were only possible to resurrect him, I’d give everything in the world!”
“Ah, so would I,” said Alyosha.