Sunday, February 10, 2019
Tolstoys Anna Karenina Essay -- Tolstoys Anna Karenina
Tolstoys Anna K atomic number 18nina The humankind of Tolstoys Anna Karenina is a world ruled by chance. From the very opening chapters, where a watchman is accidentally run over by a train at Moscows Petersburg station, to the final, climactic scenes of arbitrary destruction when Levin searches for syndicate in a forest beset by lightning, characters are brought together and forced into action against their bequeath by coincidence and, sometimes, misfortune. That Anna and Vronsky ever trifle and begin the fateful affair that becomes the centerpiece of the novel is itself a military issue of a long filament of unrelated events culminating Annas sharing a note with Vronskys mother on her way to reconcile Dolly and Stiva in Moscow. And yet, as an epigraph to this seemingly chaotic world of chance event, a seemingly amoral world that would seem to neither punish sin nor reward good, Tolstoy chooses a inverted comma that comes originally from the book of Deuteronomys so ng of Moses Vengeance is mine I will repay. Originally (and somewhat narrowly) thought to refer to Annas final ostracism from the focal ratio echelons of society that punish her for her misdeeds, the epigraph is the key to Tolstoys subtle and philosophically complex founding of morality that denies the existence of a universal and unavoidable justice and derives state from the individuals freedom to create and then bind himself to laws. Three of the novels characters, Stephen Oblonsky, Constatine Levin, and Anna Karenina, all in some way connected to the Shcherbatsky family, serve to illustrate the various ways that Tolstoys individual can be, or fail to be, good, the various ways in which a character can be moral, immoral or amoral through with(predicate) the use of thought, or reason, to create necessity outside of the confused demands of a chaotic reality.Tolstoys world is indeed a servant to chance, and the plot dep hold ons so heavily on coincidence that Anna Karenina, tak ing into account the many elements of Menippian satire and Socratic dialogue that are integrated into its structure, may well be considered in part a carnival novel. The steeplechase scene during which Vronsky breaks Frou-Frous back is a perfect example of carnivalism -- the tragic yet somehow slapstick and cartoon-like injuries that come about the riders is a parody of the grand battlefield that the steeplechase is supposed to symbolize and the ... ...els. Anna is realty in the face of the purely pleasurable and uninterpreted aspects of lifetime -- girlish delights -- that are Oblonskys daily bread.Anna is thus a tragic hero in the unbending Aristotelian sense of being destroyed by the logical ontogeny of her personality. Yet it is also true that Tolstoy resists the tragic form in the boilers suit structure of his novel by continuing into Part VIII and into Levins life after Annas death. While Anna fails to sustain a life centered in romantic morality, the Goethian ideal of complete devotion, not to the loved one, only if the condition of being in reciprocal love itself, Levin finds, at the end of the novel, a way to live that transcends the demands of reality. In the folk culture of the peasants that he encountered near the very beginning of the novel, he finds the peasant Theodore who understands Levins need to vacate the mundane, to live not for his belly, but for Truth, a goodness that is beyond the chain of cause and effect that so binds the other characters in the novel -- Dolly, for example, who, unable to apply reason outside of pragmatic thought to her life, continues to live, pathetically, with her unfaithful husband.