The Brothers Karamazov

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I’ll say it’s dark and complicated!  Who do you think Katya loves, anyway?  She claims to love one brother, and all the while she is tormenting the other.  Oh, but I was thrilled when Ivan put her in her place.  Did you hear him?   (Lena gazes off as if Ivan were standing right before her, reciting his fateful lines.)  “Know, Katerina Ivanova, that you indeed love only [Dmitri].  And the more he insults you, the more you love him.  That is your strain. You precisely love him as he is, you love him insulting you.  If he reformed, you would drop him at once and stop loving him altogether.  But you need him in order to continually contemplate your high deed of faithfulness, and to reproach him for his unfaithfulness.  And it all comes from your pride…” (192).   Oh, it’s too sad!  Why is it that in love we inflate every injury, every longing, until we’ve created a strained distortion of what’s real?

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Category:04c. Madame K's