Odd Rituals

The Millions : Who's better: Tolstoy or D ...


The question we all awoke thinking: Tolstoy vs Dostoevsky, who is the the best? I say Dostoevsky. Among the grand gestures and motives of characters in the work of both writers, there is one thing that Dostoevsky emphasises more than Tolstoy. People may be driven by love, madness, idealism, religion, anger, revenge or any other such emotion, but Dostoevsky places a major weight on another driving force that I think is present in so much of what people do (or do not do), and that is pettiness. So much of what guides his characters is their own small mindedness, which is so true of life, and this for me separates the two writers. Plus Tolstoy doesn’t half go on.