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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A must-have, 14 Dec 2006
By 
P. Sullivan - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Problems of Dostoevsky's Poetics (Theory & History of Literature) (Paperback)
This book offers the reader a scintillating journey through the profound psychological complexity of Dostoevsky's novels. In doing so, our understanding of the power and ambiguities of consciousness is brought to the fore and the reader feels impelled to read Dostoevsky. The translation by Emerson is absolutely excellent.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A master novelist's work explored by master critic, 18 Jun 1997
By A Customer
This review is from: Problems of Dostoevsky's Poetics (Theory & History of Literature) (Paperback)
This book is the ideal introduction to the thought of Mikhail Bakhtin. Bakhtin is becoming established as one of the giants of 20th century literary criticsm, despite his work being unknown in the West until the 1970's. This book is less about Dostoyevsky per se, rather a profound meditation on how Dostoyevsky's art exemplifies the central concern of Bakhtin, the concept of 'dialogism'. This idea defies a simple definition; the book in exploring manifold aspects of it, itself becomes truly dialogic. If you value Dostoyevsky as an artist, require an antidote to the chill winds of modern 'Theory', or simply appreciate genius at work, catch up with one of the best kept secrets in literature.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars As much about Bakhtin's thought as about Dostoevsky, 20 April 2012
By 
Roman Clodia (London) - See all my reviews
(TOP 100 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Problems of Dostoevsky's Poetics (Theory & History of Literature) (Paperback)
Bakhtin was only really introduced to the west by Kristeva in the late 60s but has had a profound impact on the way in which we understand and theorise texts. Here he discusses his concepts of polyphony, heteroglossia and the dialogic, ideas which have a far wider application than only in Dostoevsky or the novel.

Emerson's brief introduction and translation are both exemplary and make this text accessible without simplifying the complexities of thought inherent in Bakhtin's work.

Since Bakhtin, we have transferred his ideas into other genres beyond the novel but it's worth going back to this as a starting point even so. For anyone interested in literary voice, the socialised view of the word and language, and dialogism in a broad sense, this is essential reading.
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