Quite simply, the best cultural review in the world
How did Dostoevsky know?
On totalitarianism, evil & intellectuals
was right!Support The
If the intellectuals in the plays of Chekhov who spent all their time guessing what would happen in twenty, thirty, or forty years had been told that in forty years interrogation by torture would be [routinely] practiced in Russia; that prisoners would have their skulls squeezed within iron rings; that a human being would be lowered into an acid bath; that they would be trussed up naked to be bitten by ants and bedbugs; that a ramrod heated over a primus stove would be thrust up their anal canal (“the secret brand”); that a man’s genitals would be slowly crushed beneath the toe of a jackboot; and that, in the luckiest possible of circumstances, prisoners would be tortured by being kept from sleeping for a week, by thirst, and by being beaten to a bloody pulp, not one of Chekhov’s plays would have gotten to its end because all the heroes would have gone off to an insane asylum.
This article originally appeared in The New Criterion, Volume 17 May 1999, on page 21
Copyright © 2016 The New Criterion | www.newcriterion.comhttp://www.newcriterion.com/articles.cfm/How-did-Dostoevsky-know--2865
E-mail to friend
On Toulmin, Tolstoy, & the Dawkinsization of the humanities.
by Eric Ormsby
On A. David Moody’s Ezra Pound: Poet: Volume III: The Tragic Years 1939–1972.
On The Court and the World: American Law and the New Global Realities, by Stephen Breyer
by Bruce Bawer
The Letters of Ernest Hemingway 1926-1929, edited by Rena Sanderson, Sandra Spanier, and Robert W. Trogdon
March 29 2016
Friends and Young Friends Event: The Climate Surprise
The Walter Duranty Prize for Journalistic Mendacity
Introduction to The Kennedy Phenomenon
The Kennedy Phenomenon: "Watching the Kennedy Train-Wreck"