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Nastassya's dishonor at Totsky's hands leads to wallow in self-blame and sets in motion her tendency for self-destruction. She is willing to sacrifice her own life to cause pain to her offender. At the end of Part I, Ptitsyn draws the example of a Japanese custom of committing hara-kiri in front of one's offenders. Indeed, this is precisely Nastassya Filippovna's psychology. She is willing to ruin her life—by running away with Rogozhin—in order to prove that she is a shameless woman and that her torrid past is Totsky's fault. In the end, she even willingly goes to her death, which she knows she will find in Rogozhin. Nastassya cannot overcome her spite and outrage. Although Prince Myshkin tries to help her by offering his love out of pity, she rejects his offer in the end. Not only does she deem herself unworthy of his love, but she also cannot bring herself to be with someone who loves another woman. In short, Nastassya Filippovna represents beauty and talent that has been ruined by the corruption of the world.
Ace your assignments with our guide to The Idiot!