Dostoevsky's "The Gambler " As A Reflection Of Myself. Personal comparison

Essay by Matt ColemanHigh School, 11th gradeB, March 1995

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2.) With which literary character do you most readily identify? Why?

The literary character that I most readily identify with would be Dostoevsky's Alexei, The Gambler. I can relate to him because like me, he is a man of many passions. He is also all but helpless against his addiction to gambling. I have also felt helpless to certain circumstances in my life, as have we all. He is capable of much more than what his society allows him to be. That is to say he may be a lowly tutor, but he care's about justice and the atrocities committed by the 'high-born' class. I, through faults of my own and Injustices of my school's administration, also was limited, as Alexei was as to what people thought of me and how they treated me.

Alexei was torn between his love of gambling and his love of a woman who did not return his love.

He felt passionately about things that he did, even if he got into trouble over them. He knew that what he thought was right was often in stark contrast to what his society deemed proper. He disagreed with the social hierarchy of Russia and paid the penalty. He may have paid a penalty for standing by what he thought was right, but he knew inside that he was doing the right thing. However, he did not receive any joy from this realization. He was relatively miserable his whole life. He turned to Gambling to punish himself. This is a man who, when he had a chance to be with the woman he had loved for years, ruined it by going to the casino and gambling. He thought that it would prove to her that he loved her, because he would have a lot of money...