Quote: Originally Posted by gopher
Please explain how in your view these books cause harm to children.
I'll try to explain. Dostoevsky presents a very dark side of life in his novels. He focuses too much on the sombre part of life. If, for instance, we compare Dostoevsky to Dickens, who wrote his novels at about the same historical period, we will see a very striking difference. Dickens does reveal the darker things, too, but the general mood of his novels is bright and optimistic.
And Dostoevsky is not only pessimistic, he depicts a lot of things that are, in fact, wrong, and presents them as a norm of life. Alcoholism, wasted lives, the ugliest and most thoughtless dissipation, vodka-induced passions, vodka-induced repentance, hatred and hysteria and forced thoughtless spirituality - this is life as described by Dostoevsky, and he offers no other alternative. No hope, no chance of improvement, nothing healthy or sane. And let's consider Dostoevsky's women. What would you call Nastasya Fillippovna, the heroine from "The Idiot", if you chanced to meet her in real life? I bet that the first desciprion that will come up to your mind would be something like - hysterical fool and a brainless stuck-up ****. That's about what she was.
And Dostoevsky's passions are the passions of confused and lost people, who do not know their good from their bad. He depicts people with a guilt complex. Whatever they do, be it good or be it bad, be it right or be it wrong, they constantly find a reason to feel guilty, to feel that they are doing the wrong thing. And the worst is that there is no right thing for them. Even when they do have a choice, they can only choose between two "wrong" things they will later feel guilty about. Spineless people, who can't make a choice for themselves, and then take a firm stand and say - I did this and this, because I believe it to be right, and because I want to achieve this and this for myself, and if someone's not happy about it, they can go and shed tears in a dark corner.
And this "cocktail" of hard circumstances, lack of thinking, hysteria and unnecessary drama is presented to children as a work of genius, and the characters - as complex and noble ones, to be looked up to and copied.
That is why I would've banned Dostoevsky from school curriculum altogether.