Did Dostoevsky and Tolstoy meet each other? - Russia Beyond
elderly market woman quarrelling with a boy thief. One by one, Martin Dostoevsky, Turgenev, Balzac, and Flaubert. Tolstoy's. Christ has much to say to the modern world, but he need not . of the “Ivanov-Strauss-Renan relation to Christ and. Marriage and Divorce in the Second Half of the Nineteenth Century to the .. Dostoevsky, Tolstoy and Chekhov, family happiness in Tolstoy, sexuality in of the market and of the industry of leisure appeared inseparable from the increase. However strange, Dostoevsky and Tolstoy didn't know each other in he wrote: “ I've never seen this man and never had any relations with him.
Is Tolstoy the greatest writer of all time?
Hulton Getty This is the anniversary year for Tolstoy's death — a century ago he fled his ancestral home, Yasnaya Polyanaand went on the road with a friend his private doctor to become a kind of wandering monk.
He died only a couple of weeks later, in a remote railway station called Astapovo. He was estranged from his wife of nearly five decades, cut off from all of his children except one daughter, who had become a devoted "Tolstoyan".
It was a strange end, and the story itself was to me so compelling that I wrote a novel about it, The Last Station, in It has now been made into a filmwith Helen Mirren as the Countess and Christopher Plummer as the great man himself.
Needless to say, the anniversary is going to draw a lot of readers to Tolstoy. This is certainly a good thing. I would assume that most readers who have read Tolstoy seriously will know the important novels, War and Peace and Anna Karenina. These are certainly masterpieces that rank among the great works of western European literature.
- Did Dostoevsky and Tolstoy meet each other?
- There's more to Tolstoy than War and Peace
I go back to them myself every few years, just to sink into their worlds, which are endlessly informative, stimulating, and convincing. I love these books. But there is a vast shelf of books by Leo Tolstoy, and these contain some very intriguing and much less widely read works. It's not, as popularly thought, that Tolstoy abandoned writing fiction after Anna Karenina.
The Death of Ivan Ilych is a late piece of writing, or relatively so, and it's as good as anything Tolstoy ever wrote: He also wrote any number of wonderful late tales that read a bit like folktales, but they are self-assured, vital, unforgettable.
I like especially a very late tale called " Alyosha Gorshak ". And then, indeed, there is a fine historical novel, Hadji Murat — not a book easily bypassed by anyone seriously interested in Tolstoy's accomplishment as a writer.
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Tolstoy became a kind of prophet in his old age, during the last few decades. He turned to Christianity, but he did so with a twist.
It was his Christianity. Undoubtedly, and someone from whom today's writers can learn. Murdo Macleod I put off reading Tolstoy for a long long time. But then, four or five years back, my wife and I went on holiday to Kenya. I knew I needed a big book to keep me going on the long flight, and plumped for War and Peace. I enjoyed the book, though I've never been a great fan of historical fiction.
I did feel that he was happier writing about the haves than the have-nots, but he is a true general among novelists, marshalling his forces and always in control of the battlefield.
So I knew more about his life than about his novels. He has always seemed to me like a character from fiction himself — a tragic, complex personality. I get the feeling I will return to his novels as I get older, and will take more from them.
I was 20, a student, and already had dreams of becoming a writer. I read it at a single sitting — about a week, including bleary breaks for eating and sleeping. There were times when the tears were pouring out of my eyes so much I couldn't focus on the tiny print.
I felt proud to belong to the same culture Ukrainian and Russian are very similarbut having Tolstoy as a model made it much harder to even dare put pen to paper. Anna Karenina, which I loved too, was more manageable, if only because it is shorter and the narrative more focussed on an individual, but my all-time favourite is Resurrection.Dostoevsky, Tolstoy, Chekhov, Bulgakov, Pasternak - and Now, a New Generation!
Its themes of social injustice and personal redemption resonated in the 70s, when I first read it. This, I thought, is what all books should be like: Maybe that is one of the reasons it took me so long to become an author.
It is only when I gave up trying to emulate Tolstoy that I was able to discover my own voice as a writer. Howard Jacobson Howard Jacobson Photograph: Eamonn McCabe All novelists of any stature have this in common: Serge was very near proposing, but did not.
The author saw it all happening so — saw it, and therefore relates it. And indeed when we read Tolstoy, it feels easy.
There's more to Tolstoy than War and Peace | Books | The Guardian
This is life itself. It barely feels like artistry. But it takes genius to make art so closely resemble life. In Tolstoy's case this genius is the more remarkable for being at odds with other impulses in him — the impulse to preach, to teach, to reform: Anna Karenina set out to be a tract against adultery in high society; "Vengeance is mine and I will repay," is the epigram on the novel's title page.
The voice of God. But Anna becomes a tragic heroine as a consequence of Tolstoy's "seeing" rather than judging her and relating what he sees.
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The novelist shuts out the moralist. To "see" Anna is to comprehend her. Later on, morality reasserts itself and Tolstoy regrets writing such trivia.
For my money, Tolstoy is the greater for these self-divisions. An artist ought to doubt the value of his art. The moralist needs to be in there somewhere, questioning the "seeing" and "relating", forever trying to sabotage the work, otherwise the surface charm takes over and we fall in love with narrative for its own sake.
Art that is not in an argument with itself declines to entertainment. Tolstoy is the towering genius of the novel because in him the artist's sense of life's accidentality is forever challenged by the moraliser's drive to give life purpose.