The Double

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More About This Title The Double


One of the most accessible and entertaining works by the author of Crime and Punishment and The Brothers Karamazov

What was worse, he shook the hand as though it had been polluted with something horrid; what is more, he spat aside with disgust, accompanying this with a most insulting gesture; worse still, he drew out his handkerchief and, in the most unseemly way, wiped all the fingers that had rested for one moment in the hand of Mr Golyadkin senior.

Constantly rebuffed from the social circles he aspires to frequent, the timid clerk Golyadkin is confronted by the sudden appearance of his double, a more brazen, confident, and socially succesful version of himself, who abuses and victimizes the original. As he is increasingly persecuted, Golyadkin finds his social, romantic, and professional life unraveling, in a spiral that leads to a catastrophic denouement. Dostoevsky's second published work of fiction, which foreshadows in its themes many of his mature novels, is the surreal and hallucinatory tale of an unfortunate anti-hero, at once chilling in its depiction of the dark sides of human nature, and exuberantly comical. Includes pictures and an extensive section on Dostoevsky's life and works.


Fyodor Dostoevsky (1821–1881) is considered one of the greatest writers of all time. His works include such seminal novels as Crime and Punishment, The Idiot, and The Brothers Karamazov. Hugh Aplin has translated Mikhail Bulgakov's A Dog's Heart and The Fatal Eggs, Fyodor Dostoevsky's The Eternal Husband, and Mikhail Kuzmin's Wings.


"No novelist ever wrestled with materialism more fiercely and intelligently than Dostoevsky."  —Jonathan Franzen