A predecessor to such monumental works as Crime and Punishment and The Brothers Karamazov, Notes from the Underground represents a turning point in Fyodor Dostoevsky's writing toward the more political side. In this work, we follow the unnamed narrator of the story, who, disillusioned by the oppression and corruption of the society in which he lives, withdraws from that society into the underground. This "Underground Man" is one of the first genuine antiheroes in European literature.
The first part of this unusual work is often treated as a philosophical text in its own right; the second part illustrates the theory of the first by means of its own fictional practice. A dark and politically charged novel, Notes from the Underground shows Dostoevsky at his best.