Restoring the Inner Heart: The Nous in Dostoevsky's Ridiculous Man [Paperback]

Mary Naumenko (Author)

ISBN: 9781942699125 | Published by: Holy Trinity Seminary Press | Year of Publication: 2019 | Language: English 160p, H216 x W140 (mm)

Restoring the Inner Heart


Written close to the end of the great writer’s life, Fyodor Dostoevsky’s short story The Dream of a Ridiculous Man tells of a transformation of the heart and a journey from despair to joy: a joy that can be known by all through the experience of God that transcends a simply rational discourse. In this eye opening literary study, the title character and his spiritual metamorphosis are examined in depth in light of the ancient concept of Nous as it developed from the Greek philosophers to the Christian fathers. By comparing the “Ridiculous Man” to similar characters in Dostoevsky’s corpus, the author shows how an Orthodox Christian understanding of the Nous underpins Dostoevsky’s own anthropology and how his literary works in turn guide the reader toward a truer vision of humanity.

Table of Contents

INTRODUCTION PART 1: THE HISTORY OF THE CONCEPT OF NOUS FROM PRE-SOCRATIC PHILOSOPHY TO THE CHRISTIAN ERA Chapter 1: The Nous in Hellenic Philosophy: Anaxagoras to Plato Chapter 2: The Nous in Hellenic Philosophy; Aristotle to Plotinus Chapter 3: A Transition from Hellenic Philosophy to Christianity Chapter 4: The Incarnation and Deification in Early Patristic Thought Chapter 5: The Heart and the Nous in Patristic Thought Chapter 6: Purification of the Nous Chapter 7: A Move Away from Noetic Perception PART 2: THE NOUS AND DOSTOEVSKY Chapter 8: Some Biographical Details Chapter 9: The Dream of a Ridiculous Man: A Synopsis and Analysis of the Story Chapter 10: Examples of Other “Ridiculous Men” in Dostoevsky's Novels PART 3: THE NOUS IN CONTEMPORARY THOUGHT Chapter 11: References to the Unnamed Nous Chapter 12: A Renewed Interest in Deification Chapter 13: Contemporary Orthodox Writers on the Nous CONCLUSION Acknowledgments APPENDIX: The Dream of a Ridiculous Man by F.M. Dostoevsky, David Magershack, Translator BIBLIOGRAPHY END NOTES Index

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