Classification – name: Literary studies
Author: Nikolay N. Podosokorsky
Pages: 305-338
Publisher: A.M. Gorky Institute of World Literature of the Russian Academy of Sciences (IWL RAS Publ.)
Rights – description: Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivatives 4.0 (СС BY-ND)
Rights – URL: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nd/4.0/
Language of the publication: Russian
Type of document: Research Article
Collection: Dostoevsky’s Theology
DOI: https://doi.org/10.22455/978-5-9208-0663-5-305-338
Year of publication: 2021
Place of publication: Moscow

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Nikolay Podosokorsky. MASONIC TRACES IN DOSTOEVSKY’S LIFE AND WORKS FROM THE POINT OF VIEW OF THE WRITER’S THEOLOGY

About the author:

Nikolay N. Podosokorsky, PhD in Philology, Adviser for the Rector, Novgorod National University Yaroslav Mudryi, Bolshaya Sankt-Peterburgskaya st. 41, 173021 Veliky Novgorod, Russia; Senior Researcher, A.M. Gorky Institute of World Literature of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Povarskaya 25 a, 121069 Moscow, Russia.

ORCID ID: https://orcid.org/0000-0001-6310-1579

E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 

Abstract:

For the first time are here presented to Dostoevsky scholars new facts concerning the masonic environment of the writer, who starting from his education in Chermak’s boarding school in 1834–1837 cultivated close relations of friendship with masons, some of them initiated even in 1840s (Apollon Grigorev), when masonry in Russia was officially forbidden, but nevertheless underground meetings continued. Reasons are given in support to the hypothesis, expressed for the first time by Tatiana Kasatkina in the middle of 1990s, of the possibility for Dostoevsky to have been a mason during the 1840s. Whether or not, direct references to masons and masonic symbolic in Dostoevsky’s oeuvre are impossible to explain (Uncle’s Dream, The Humiliated and the Insulted, The Adolescent, The Brothers Karamazov) if one ignores his interest for masonic teaching. Moreover, the specific characteristic of Russian masonry in the last third of the 18th – beginning of the 19th century was the fact that it was not overly differentiated from Christian teaching and theology, however, masonry stood against Orthodox church for the simple fact of its existence, as it held itself as a “small church”. The analysis of Dostoevsky’s early novel White Nights is here undertaken with regard to masonic teaching on death and resurrection of man.

Keywords: Dostoevsky, White Nights, Apollon Grigorev, Chermak’s boarding school, masonry, masons, afterlife, theology, biography, ghosts, romanticism, Aleksey Pleshcheev, Walter Scott, drowned woman, daydreaming, fantasy.