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Written by Julia Wolf
The theme of suicide is a primary one in the short story “A Gentle Creature”. The author with persistent and anxious attention studied the facts of suicide among the younger generation and gives a deep analysis of the psychology of "tired souls." Dostoevsky has written many essays and articles on the problems of suicide with psychological point of view, but as “A Gentle Creature” is a piece of literature it does not provides the reader with the direct answers, but depicts the situations which are mostly likely to end up with the lethal end. The theme of suicide is the main of the story and is mentioned in every chapter, and every line is penetrated with the feelings of fatal finish, but how the author draws the attention to this problem only using external factors proves his skillfulness in writing and knowing people’s souls inside out.
"A Gentle Creature" is devoted to the theme of superiority between people, that all people perform for each other the functions of jailers and executioners. "It captivated me, this feeling of inequality, it is very sweet, very sweet." The narrator constantly emphasizes that the “Gentle” is the only person on earth for him. He could become her deliverer, but became a jailer. She came to him filled with love, but the pride that filled the narrator made him a jailer with good intentions. He had his own idea of "revenge" on society. In “Gentle” he seeks obedience first of all; this proud narrator does not allow equality.
The themes of biblical motifs is present almost in all the works of the writer, and as he agrees many times his biggest search in life was a search for faith. The most vivid and expressive motif is the icon of Mother of God which the Gentle brought to the pawnshop to pawn and later she jumps from the window with this icon in her hands. This detail is very important as it shows that her desire not to live was stronger than her faith, every believer knows that a suicide is one of the greatest sins, but this knowledge does not stop her from committing it. Another biblical motif is the reference to Apocalypse in the very end, when the narrator says that the sun is dead.
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