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The Choice of Evil Authors often discuss the evil nature of society into their literature to make a strong social statement or to define human nature Through the novels of Crime and Punishment Frankenstein and Paradise Lost the authors include characters whose actions and psychological aspects depict a truly evil nature Throughout each novel varying aspects of society and different desires produce the evil nature within characters The authors Dostoevsky Shelley and Milton use the causes of evil to enhance the complexity of characters along with providing another layer to the crime or evil deed The evil nature of man stems from the pressures of society which then results in manipulation and corruption of the human mind In Crime and Punishment Raskolnikovs poverty-stricken world surrounds him with despair thus creating an environment for his evil nature to flourish Raskolnikov justifies the unimaginable murder of a wretched pawnbroker by stating that the community is better without her For killing her was atonement for forty sins She was sucking the life out of poor people Dostoevsky 478 The poverty which he faces gives explanation to the theory that man is born inherently good and the evils of society lead to his downfall Sociologists and philosophers alike have supported Rousseaus belief that man lives in a society in which he is constantly within sight and reach of evil In the article Collectivizing Death it is explained that man is forced to face evil constantly which often causes him to become calloused from its true immorality and hor ror Horowitz Par 14 The desensitization causes Raskolnikov to view crime as a way to benefit his own self The poverty can be seen as the cause of his evil yet it is questionable whether it is the ultimate cause For in reality this would imply that all who live in poverty are ultimately evil in nature which would be stereotypical and judgmental Raskolnikovs evil nature is thus caused by
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