MAIN OBJECTIVE OF THE FESTIVAL
“So great is the worth of Dostoevsky that to have produced him is by itself sufficient justification for the existence of the Russian people in the world: and he will bear witness for his country-men at the last judgment of the nations”, said Nikolai Berdyaev, well-known Russian philosopher, some 85 years ago. And, although the greatness of Fyodor Dostoyevsky, as it was put by Berdyaev, was not unanimously accepted in Europe and the Western World, he certainly created an extensive interest, not only as a novelist, but as a philosopher and thinker, as well. Probably, more than any other Russian writer he became the subject of deep psychological studies, and his works are analyzed on and on, in attempts to understand “The Russian Soul,” which seems to be so evasive and mysterious for minds educated and brought-up in, so-called, “Western civilization.”
Our goal was to instigate an intellectual exchange steered by the Dostoyevsky connoisseurs among the scholars of leading US Universities, led by Prof. Gary Rosenshield of the University of Wisconsin, Madison (one of America's most respected Dostoevsky scholars) as a keynote speaker, Irina Kuznetsova, young, but extremely well-versed scholar from the University of Virginia at Charlottesville, and certainly by our guests from Russia, Prof. Igor Volgin of the Moscow University and the Director of the Dostoyevsky Foundation, and Alexei Dimitriyevich Dostoyevsky, the direct descendant of the writer, residing at St. Petersburg.