Aleksandr Petrovich lives through a spiritual re-awakening that culminates with his release from the prison camp. The narrator has been sentenced to penalty deportation to Siberia and ten years of hard labor for murdering his wife. Published in 1861, „House of the Dead” is a semi-autobiographical work based upon Dostoevsky’s exile to Siberia where he was punished with „hard labor” after he was initially convicted to be punished by death by firing-squad for his involvement in the Petrashevsky Circle. This experience allowed him to describe with great authenticity the conditions of prison life and the characters of the convicts. Dostoyevsky skillfully portrays the inmates of the prison with sympathy for their plight, and admiration for their energy, ingenuity and talent. The book is a loosely-knit collection of facts, events and philosophical discussion organized by „theme” rather than as a continuous story.