Then… who then… is the murderer?” he asked in a breathless voice, unable to restrain himself. Porfiry Petrovitch sank back in his chair, as though he were amazed at the question. “Who is the murderer?” he repeated, as though unable to believe his ears. “Why, you, Rodion Romanovitch! You are the murderer,” he added, almost in a whisper, in a voice of genuine conviction.
The Detective is questioning his murder suspect. This lesson is designed for students to close read one key chapter in Fydor Dostoyevsky’s novel, Crime and Punishment. The students will close read the text examining the character’s motivations. After viewing and comparing two film clips and a theatrical version of the scene in Crime and Punishment, students will analyze the prose, and discuss the method Dostoyevsky uses to reveal the character’s intentions as well as apply critical literary theory lenses to their analysis. A Socratic Seminar completes the study. A link to the 2011 AP English Literature exam prompt, rubric, student samples, and essay commentary is provided.
In this resource there is a unique detailed rubric that can be used to score Socratic Seminars in a way that encourages organic fluid discussions. In the guide there is a step by step explanation on how to conduct a fish-bowl discussion with the rubric. This unit is perfect for Language Arts class and writing courses. Common Core standards, Essential and Key Questions, and links to several multimedia links included.
Key words: Dostoyevsky, Crime and Punishment, literary theory, Marxist Criticism, Feminist Criticism, New Historicism/Cultural Studies Criticism, Psychoanalytic Criticism, AP English Literature, AP English Language, Gifted, comparison, film study, Socratic Seminar, novel, Russian Literature