Crime and Punishment

Crime and Punishment

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Pulcheria Alexandrovna Raskolnikov Character Analysis

Raskolnikov’s mother, Pulcheria writes to him early in the novel to inform him of Dunya’s engagement to Luzhin. Pulcheria loves Raskolnikov dearly and fears for his health when she meets with him in Petersburg. She dies at the end of the novel without fully knowing what her son has done, though she guesses it is something horrible.

Pulcheria Alexandrovna Raskolnikov Quotes in Crime and Punishment

The Crime and Punishment quotes below are all either spoken by Pulcheria Alexandrovna Raskolnikov or refer to Pulcheria Alexandrovna Raskolnikov. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Criminality, Morality, and Guilt Theme Icon
). Note: all page and citation info for the quotes below refers to the Vintage edition of Crime and Punishment published in 1993.
Part 1, Chapter 3 Quotes

. . . as he explained, a husband ought to owe nothing to his wife, but it is much better if a wife looks upon her husband as a benefactor.

Related Characters: Pulcheria Alexandrovna Raskolnikov (speaker), Avdotya (Dunya) Romanovna Raskolnikov, Pyotr Petrovich Luzhin
Page Number: 36
Explanation and Analysis:

Luzhin, about whom Pulcheria is speaking, seems to be a good, honest man, a government official who announces that he is truly in love with Dunya, Raskolnikov's sister. But this speech he gives, as reported by Pulcheria, is somewhat odd considering the circumstances. He argues that it is better for a husband to marry a wife in a "lower position," because then the wife will literally look up to her husband, rely on him for everything, and be, therefore, much more inclined to work for him and for the good of their family.

This, of course, is at best an upsetting, and at worst a deeply terrifying conception of marriage, as a kind of servitude a woman must provide her husband. But Pulcheria and Dunya recognize that, based on their material circumstances, they have very little say in the matter. Dunya must be married if their family is to be supported, especially with Raskolnikov earning so little money. And Raskolnikov himself feels an unacknowledged guilt at being unable to offer his sister and mother any money to survive. 

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Part 6, Chapter 7 Quotes

I’m wicked, I see that . . . but why do they love me so, when I’m unworthy of it!

Related Characters: Rodion Romanovich Raskolnikov (speaker), Pulcheria Alexandrovna Raskolnikov, Avdotya (Dunya) Romanovna Raskolnikov
Related Symbols: Lazarus
Page Number: 520
Explanation and Analysis:

Here Raskolnikov references a belief relating to a fundamentally Christian idea, as it is developed throughout the novel - that of the golden rule, in which others are to be treated the way they would wish to be treated. Dunya and Pulcheria love the young man unconditionally, and they do their best to demonstrate to him this love, despite whatever he might have done or might do in the future. They do this because they wish to be loved by him, because they treat him the way they want to be treated, because they are religious people, and, ultimately, to believe that the world works in this way, with people caring for those who care for them.

Raskolnikov finally seems to understand the unconditional nature of this life, even as he has a hard time understanding what it might mean for him - how they can love him after what he has done. This love, for Raskolnikov, is now only a source of pain for him, and though he understands it better in this scene, he still has a difficult time accepting it. 

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Pulcheria Alexandrovna Raskolnikov Character Timeline in Crime and Punishment

The timeline below shows where the character Pulcheria Alexandrovna Raskolnikov appears in Crime and Punishment. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Part 1, Chapter 3
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Raskolnikov reads the letter. His mother Pulcheria has not written for two months but can now tell Raskolnikov of recent good fortune... (full context)
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Pulcheria and Dunya were afraid to inform Raskolnikov of this news, not wanting to burden him,... (full context)
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...order a relative of Marfa’s named Pyotr Petrovich Luzhin proposed marriage to her. Dunya and Pulcheria have agreed in principle to this marriage, arranged speedily, without Raskolnikov’s consent, as Pulcheria goes... (full context)
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...before proposing. He is 45 years old, a rising government official, and “still handsome,” in Pulcheria’s words. He is also in accord with the political fashions of the time—meaning he is... (full context)
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In the letter, Pulcheria describes how, at his second visit with the family, Luzhin announces that it is ideal... (full context)
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...brother to her fiancé, but he resolves that he will judge Raskolnikov’s character in person. Pulcheria reveals that Luzhin will send for her and for Dunya within a week, bringing them... (full context)
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Dunya has joked to Pulcheria that she is so excited to see Raskolnikov she would marry Luzhin almost for that... (full context)
Part 1, Chapter 4
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...his mother’s justifications for the speed of the courtship and for Luzhin’s behavior, believing that Pulcheria has misrepresented the family’s happiness and Dunya’s willingness to go through with the marriage. Raskolnikov... (full context)
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Raskolnikov goes to on to denounce Luzhin for his penny-pinching behavior, since Pulcheria and Dunya will have to pay for much of their travel (Luzhin will cover the... (full context)
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Raskolnikov weighs his options. He could repay Dunya and Pulcheria once he has established himself in a solid professional position, but that could take ten... (full context)
Part 2, Chapter 3
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...Razumikhin shows him a new hat, shirt, trousers, and boots, all purchased with the money Pulcheria sent. Raskolnikov initially does not want to change but Razumikhin convinces him. Raskolnikov briefly forgets... (full context)
Part 2, Chapter 5
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Luzhin argues that his words were misrepresented in Pulcheria’s letter, but Raskolnikov does not permit Luzhin to finish speaking and instead demands that he... (full context)
Part 2, Chapter 7
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...room Raskolnikov tells Razumikhin of Marmeladov’s death. It appears that someone is in the room. Pulcheria and Dunya are there—they have been waiting for Raskolnikov for an hour and a half.... (full context)
Part 3, Chapter 1
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...and get Zossimov, send Zossimov to check on Raskolnikov, then report again to Dunya and Pulcheria. (full context)
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Razumikhin complains, confusedly, to Pulcheria and Dunya of the argument he had at his apartment, with those who preach “the... (full context)
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...apartment. Dunya appears to like Razumikhin though she knows he has been on a “binge.” Pulcheria is so worried about Raskolnikov she does not know what to think. Razumikhin has fallen... (full context)
Part 3, Chapter 2
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...with special care and resolves not to bring up his behavior yesterday with Dunya and Pulcheria. (full context)
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...Zossimov reports that Raskolnikov’s landlady was not interested in his advances. Razumikhin visits Dunya and Pulcheria at their lodgings. They are happy to see him, and he describes in greater detail... (full context)
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Pulcheria asks Razumikhin more questions about Raskolnikov’s condition. Razumikhin replies that he is “not a hypochondriac,... (full context)
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...Luzhin the previous day. Unlike the night before, Razumikhin refuses to speak badly of Luzhin. Pulcheria shows a letter from Luzhin and asks Razumikhin’s advice. In the letter, Luzhin says he... (full context)
Part 3, Chapter 3
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Pulcheria reiterates her concerns about her son’s health and Raskolnikov appears to explain his behavior, as... (full context)
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Pulcheria tells her son that Marfa Svidrigailov died, suddenly, of a stroke after being beaten by... (full context)
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Pulcheria wonders if Raskolnikov’s condition doesn’t derive from the squalor of his apartment. Raskolnikov repeats to... (full context)
Part 3, Chapter 4
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...morning. Sonya says her mother will also be preparing a funeral meal with Raskolnikov’s money. Pulcheria and Dunya leave together. (full context)
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Outside, Pulcheria tells Dunya that Raskolnikov appears quite ill. Pulcheria believes that Sonya might be at the... (full context)
Part 3, Chapter 6
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...in order to throw them off the scent. Razumikhin goes up to visit Dunya and Pulcheria and Raskolnikov leaves in a huff, returning to his apartment. As he arrives, he learns... (full context)
Part 4, Chapter 2
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They run into Luzhin as they enter Pulcheria and Dunya’s quarters. They all discuss, briefly, Marfa’s death, and Dunya learns that Svidrigailov has... (full context)
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...Svidrigailov has already paid him a visit and that Marfa left Dunya three thousand roubles. Pulcheria is very pleased. Luzhin gets up to leave but is stayed by Dunya, who reminds... (full context)
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...considers young and rude. Luzhin argues Raskolnikov has misrepresented his opinions regarding marriage and poverty; Pulcheria counters that Luzhin has lied about Raskolnikov’s actions the night of Marmeladov’s death, for he... (full context)
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Luzhin grows angry when Pulcheria tells him that they have moved to Petersburg and abandoned all to meet him, and... (full context)
Part 4, Chapter 3
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Luzhin is most shocked that Pulcheria, Dunya, and Raskolnikov do not view him as a benefactor and protector. He worries about... (full context)
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As Razumikhin, Dunya, and Pulcheria make their plans, Raskolnikov says he must go, and adds, ominously, that it's not as... (full context)
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...at the thought. The narrator says he will not detail how Razumikhin consoled Dunya and Pulcheria, but he adds that, from this time on, Razumikhin was truly their son and brother. (full context)
Part 5, Chapter 1
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Luzhin awakes to find he is still upset about his interaction with Dunya and Pulcheria. He returns to his apartment and learns that he, along with Lebezyatnikov, Raskolnikov, and Amalia... (full context)
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...Lebezyatnikov answers that Luzhin is only angry because he was rebuffed yesterday by Dunya and Pulcheria. Luzhin is angered but asks Lebezyatnikov whether he can’t call Sonya over to speak with... (full context)
Part 5, Chapter 5
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...Dunya says she understands why Raskolnikov is so upset, why he cannot see her or Pulcheria. Raskolnikov replies that Razumikhin is a good man, implying that Dunya and he ought to... (full context)
Part 6, Chapter 1
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...spoken highly of him to his sister, and has said Razumikhin will remain her and Pulcheria’s “Providence” in the coming days and weeks. Raskolnikov tells Razumikhin that his “secret” will be... (full context)
Part 6, Chapter 7
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...mother, who is now staying with Dunya in a better apartment arranged for by Razumikhin. Pulcheria admits that she has been reading Raskolnikov’s article, and though she does not understand it,... (full context)
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Pulcheria does not understand what is happening but recognizes that Raskolnikov is in a dire situation.... (full context)
Epilogue, Chapter 1
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Pulcheria became ill at the start of the proceedings. Pulcheria seems at first to think that... (full context)
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...Razumikhin hopes to raise enough money to join his friend in Siberia after several years. Pulcheria approves of their marriage and continues raving about Raskolnikov as she is dying, saying that... (full context)