Stefan Zweig: Sjakknovelle

A Gentle Spirit          symbol-lydbog-lille

Av Fyodor M. Dostoyevsky

A Gentle Spirit from 1876 was released in Dostoyevsky’s one-man periodical A Writer’s Diary, which was always eagerly anticipated in his contemporary Russia. The short novel is a despairing man’s monologue on the night after his young wife’s suicide, and through his incoherent speech by her deathbed the background of the tragedy slowly unfolds. The narrator is a retired officer, who now earns his living as a pawnbroker. He feels unappreciated by his peers and marries a young, poor but proud woman, whom he suppresses and dominates in an attempt to gain appreciation and love. His strict demands, however, have the opposite effect.

Title info:
  • Translated from Russian by Constance Garnett
  • Narrated by David Bateson
  • Time: 2 h 1 min
  • Download: $15.00 // €12.65
  • Audio sample:


“You simply feel like crying as you read; there are very few such jewels in all of European literature.” – Saltykov-Shchedrin, Dostoevsky

“… one of the finest and purest creations that ever came from Dostoevsky’s pen … A Gentle Spirit is also Dostoevsky’s best-rounded and most finely modulated portrait of his ‘underground man’ character type. Nowhere else is he presented so fully as a sensitive and suffering human being, whose inhumanity derives from a need for love that has become perverted and distorted by egoism and vanity.” – Joseph Frank, Dostoevsky

“A rather small book, but it is big for all of us, unattainably big.” – Knut Hamsun