I’ve started to read The Idiot several times, got as far as Myshkin arriving in Petersburg once or twice, but never got as far as realising his “Prince” character was the “Idiot” – as the naïve and well-intentioned voice in a complex world of love, money, ambition and personal motivation. Dostoyevsky’s strategy to communicate his message, like Tolstoy’s Levin in Karenina, or the child noticing the emperor’s (lack of) clothes.
All makes sense now. Thanks to a Tweet yesterday, I was prompted to listen to the whole of a BBC R4 dramatization in 4 parts.
Just started listening to the BBC’s 4 part radio dramatisation of Dostoevsky’s The Idiot, recorded back in 2002. It’s got Roger Allam, Alex Jennings, Lia Willliams and others and it’s superb. @BBCSounds
— David Aaronovitch (@DAaronovitch) March 28, 2020
(Thanks to an approving Retweet by Andrew Copson.)
It’s all there. Not just the Prince, but the strong feminist woman, outcast in a world where the other female characters were second class citizens. Recommended
[Talking of strong feminist women, also recently read Margaret Wertheim’s “Pythagoras’ Trousers – God, Physics and the Gender Wars”. Also highly recommended.]