Inquisition of the Inquisitor

I’m trying to learn for my Writing class and I’m stuck. Can you help?

Inquisition of the Inquisitor

  • Rebellion (Dostoevsky, 1991) [PDF]
  • The Grand Inquisitor (Dostoevsky, 1991) [PDF]

In Dostoevsky’s (1991) book, The Brothers Karamazov, he depicted two of the brothers, Ivan and Alyosha, discussing religious and political topics at a tavern. Ivan is a hard-bitten atheist/agnostic, and Alyosha is studying for the ministry in the Russian Orthodox Church and is the disciple of a well-known saint. Their discussion roams across many topics, including God, the problem of evil, and love. In the course of the discussion, Ivan shares what he calls a “poem” that he has written called The Grand Inquisitor that sounds more like a parable than a poem.

  • Summarize your understanding of the main points of the poem/parable
  • Analyze the poem/parable that Ivan tells. To what is it referring? How should we understand it? What is its meaning?
    • Does the Grand Inquisitor have a point? Do you agree with the Grand Inquisitor?
    • What is the significance of the kiss at the end?
    • Is this similar to a “parable of grace” or something else?

Your analysis should be no less than four full pages; not including the title page or bibliography. Support your statements with evidence from the Required Studies and your research.

Click here for information on course rubrics.


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