How old is the Raskolnikov character in “Crime and Punishment?”


april 16 2011
Just finished the book: about 24, can’t cite page, but did the math from a line late in the novel.
ORIGINAL QUESTION:
John Hurt was 39 in actual chronological age when the he played Raskolnikov in the BBC version of Dostoyevsky’s novel. That is so wrong. Closeups etc. How old at the outside would the character have been? Not like having a non-caucasian playing, just wrong, wrong, wrong.
I started watching the 1979 BBC miniseries version of “Crime and Punishment” with John Hurt in the role of Raskolnikov. John Hurt’s actual age during the film would have been about 39. My guess is that the character in the novel would be about 20 at the time that he commits the murders. I have no argument with the quality of Hurt’s talent and skill, but after watching the first hour of the miniseries, I just can’t go on. It is simply too incongruous, cognitive dissonance on a major scale…for me at least. At the same time, I’m about a third of the way through the actual novel. I’ve googled and binged, but can find no answer to the question of how old the Raskolnikov character is supposed to be. Chacha.com says he’s about 20, but gives no evidence, internal or otherwise for the answer. So more specifically, I’m looking for any “hard” evidence of how old the Raskolnikov character is “supposed” to be. My opinion: he’s a university drop-out, described in fascinating detail in the novel. From the context I’d say he’s about 20, but I have not proof. I’m also fascinated that I could find nothing of value on this question on the Net.

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