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BU to hold Dostoevsky Conference

Nov. 5, 1999



The Brothers Karamazov by Fyodor Dostoevsky will be the subject of Baylor's 'Dostoevsky on Religion and Ethics' conference, which seeks to deal with the political, psychological, social and religious issues raised in the 19th century novel.

'Dostoevsky is one of the greatest novelists of the 19th century and perhaps even longer,' said Dr. Stuart E. Rosenbaum, professor of philosophy.

The Dostoevsky Conference, which has taken place at several other universities already, will be at Baylor Monday and Tuesday. Baylor was chosen to present the Dostoevsky Conference because of its location, which will hopefully allow people from all over Texas to attend the conference, Rosenbaum said.

The main features of the conference are presentations by Ignat Avsey, lecturer in Russian language and literature at the University of Westminster in London, and Roger Heathcott, a London actor.

Heathcott will be presenting 'Grand Inquisitor,' a chapter in The Brothers Karamazov, as a drama on Monday night in the Mabee Theater in the Hooper-Schaefer Fine Arts Center. The chapter is about Ivan, the central character, who is deeply troubled about evil. Evil functions as a central concern of the book, which is similar to the book of Job.

'I would encourage anyone interested in Job to go see 'Grand Inquisitor' because of its similarity in topics,' Rosenbaum said.

Dr. Ralph Wood, university professor, teaches the course, 'Problem of Evil from Job to Dostoevsky,' at Baylor and was invited to lecture at the conference.

'Dostoevsky is a major literary figure in world literature and is important in Christianity,' Wood said. 'He was a life-long member of the Russian Orthodox Church, and he deals with the problems and nature of evil [in his book].'