Dostoevsky's Endgame: The Projected Sequel to The Brothers Karamazov

James L. Rice, University of Oregon

We reconstruct the unwritten sequel which Dostoevsky projected for his last novel, THE BROTHERS KARAMAZOV. (See his preface "From theAuthor.") Twelve sources are employed, from nine hands including the author. The sequel sources, most of them contemporary with the writing and serialization of THE BROTHERS KARAMAZOV, coalesce into one startling but plausible plot: Alesha Karamazov is to become a revolutionary, to commit a political crime (in one source the assassination of the tsar), and to be executed. One earlier study (Blagoi 1974) covered some of the same ground but fell on deaf ears, using only four of our sources. Those results we review. The novel that we know, famous in world literature, is reexamined to see how it was designed to accommodate Alesha's destiny in the sequel. The author's career is also briefly reconsidered to explain what led to this radical endgame. Suggestions are made for a revisionist vita of Dostoevsky.

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