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Word Count: 1,769
Smerdyakov Dostoevsky first presents Smerdyakov in The Brothers Karamazov in Book 3 of Part 1 The author divulges details of the conception of the fourth son of Fyodor Pavovich Karamazov Late on a September evening a drunk Fyodor by modern standards rapes a homeless woman Stinking Lizaveta the victim of Fyodors violence was a legend in the town Regardless of her unattractive and dirty appearance her poverty and homelessness the townspeople regarded her with sympathy and compassion Fyodor on the other hand treated Lizaveta as an insubordinate who was undeserving of even an ounce of respect He and his friends mock her He then rapes her And as if these actions are not cruel and offensive enough he vehemently denies any of it happening Later when Lizaveta gives birth to Fyodors illegitimate son it is Grigory and Marfa who take the boy in baptize him and decide to raise the child The townspeople mistakenly credit Fyodor for taking the dead womans child into his house All of these disturbing actions on the part of Fyodor are cause for his punishment While Fyodor neglected his fatherly duties to his other three sons to this fourth he rejects them completely He finds the controversy around the mystery of the boys conception amusing He employs his own son as one of his servants as his lackey Although incredible attention to detail is paid to the story of Lizaveta Dostoevsky waits to speak of the boy himself It is as if the author is all ready separating this last son Dostoevsky claims to not want to go into detail about Smerdyakov so as not to distract the reader from the story However it is an intention set-up on the part of the author When we finally learn more of this mysterious character it is not until four chapters later Dostoevsky is oddly able to summarize the character of Smerdyakov in only five pages whereas with the characters
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