“Another thing, Karamazov — tell me […] Is he some kind of buffoon, a clown, or what? / ‘Oh no, not at all. He’s one of those sensitive people who have been crushed by life. Their clowning is really a show of spite to people whom they don’t care to answer back, after they’ve been humiliated for a long time and intimidated. Believe me, Krasotkin, that clowning can be terribly sad at times”
I have a strange addiction to ‘open and point’. Maybe because it usually works. Regardless of what I find, there’s usually something applicable, some piece of wisdom to glean from the words of another. Although I do agree that context is key, in this case, I can’t explain it- I haven’t gotten that far in Dostoevsky’s classic yet. Do not be afraid to pinpoint, but once there read a bit to the left and a bit to the right. Weigh both the obvious public interpretation and the perceptive analysis. “one of those sensitive people who have been crushed by life” I guess that could be anybody. I suppose that’s everybody. Give not pity, a helpless sentiment, nor envy for their charisma but compassion. We all need it. You never really know the full underlying context of why we do what we do.