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Resurrezione by Lev Tolstoj
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Resurrezione (original 1899; edition 2003)

by Lev Tolstoj (Autore)

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2,549304,458 (3.82)1 / 61
Resurrection (1899) is the last of Tolstoy's major novels. It tells the story of a nobleman's attempt to redeem the suffering his youthful philandering inflicted on a peasant girl who ends up a prisoner in Siberia.Tolstoy's vision of redemption achieved through loving forgiveness, and his condemnation of violence, dominate the novel. An intimate, psychological tale of guilt, anger, and forgiveness, Resurrection is at the same time a panoramic description of social life in Russia at the end of the nineteenthcentury, reflecting its author's outrage at the social injustices of the world in which he lived.This edition, which updates a classic translation, has explanatory notes and a substantial introduction based on the most recent scholarship in the field.… (more)
Member:Mati97
Title:Resurrezione
Authors:Lev Tolstoj (Autore)
Info:BUR Biblioteca Univ. Rizzoli (2003), 592 pages
Collections:Your library
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Resurrection by Leo Tolstoy (1899)

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» See also 61 mentions

English (19)  Catalan (6)  German (2)  Dutch (1)  Italian (1)  Portuguese (Brazil) (1)  All languages (30)
Showing 1-5 of 19 (next | show all)
I can’t quite tell you what I think but I’ll tell you what I don’t think. On the one hand, I respect a sort of fear of this book, if the fear is offered with a certain respect; it led to Lenin in a way that “War and Peace” and “Anna Karenina” did not. So much was implicated in the moral muck of czarism, not least the czarist church, that it was quite a frightening explosion that swept it all away. But some criticisms are not just. Are we to reject the book because there’s not enough flirting, despite the importance of the promises and pitfalls of love to the story? Are we to be so enamored of the purely personal, to everything we can blazon our names on, that we are to resent every appearance of “Nekhlyudov” meaning “Somebody” and “Maslova”, “Woman”? Do we regret all the hours of our lives not spent eating pizza so bitterly that a story about people with lives to live and business to accomplish and not just hours to fritter away and alcohol to steal, must be rubbish? But perhaps this is not the problem. Perhaps the problem is that it isn’t long enough. The longest and most grandiose is the best Tolstoy, and the less long and the less grandiose is second, and the only moderately long moral drivel that serves no purpose whatever, except for our individual and collective regeneration, but to which no grandiose war can be ascribed and in which no personal yet safe, near yet distant thing can be found. “Anna Karenina” is very subtle and ambiguous. Who’s it even about—Anna or Levin? That “War and Peace” is “something more than a novel”, but a piece of manly adornment, such as may be tacked on a uniform, need not be discussed. Of course I don’t think it’s bad writing, no. But it is less developed; especially W&P is developed in details but on the whole has no real purpose for existing. So what if Napoleon invaded Russia? What is this, trivia? When Napoleon invaded Russia, were there twelve historians and ten marshals, or the reverse? What are we trying to learn? Better than some of Dickens, where he’s just reliving sixteen, reliving childhood and young love, but not perfect. “Resurrection” tries to be perfect: an appropriate response might be wonder, awe, or fear—trepidation. Considering him an enemy might be appropriate, if there’s no contempt, but wondering if bananas are on sale next week because of plot pacing being boring is not grown-up. The plot pacing is fine, but any semi-literate can pace a plot. And that human suffering should not be considered a good problem to solve because only really good subtle ambiguous things are good, and a man in prison suffering who has done nothing wrong, perhaps only good things, like trying to be an honest Christian, “well that’s not really culture, you understand; I’m a specialist and I’m better than you are, but this isn’t that, so it’s nothing worth. Books should be culture, and only involve cultural topics; human suffering is the province of, I don’t know, social work or law, but it’s not really important. There’s nothing really interesting to say about a man suffering who’s only tried to help his fellows; that’s only religion, not culture.” There are no words, my friends, to condemn such an opinion as this; in fact, it is sufficiently bad that it would not be wise to try. So that’s what “Resurrection” isn’t. What it is in its fullness I can’t say, although as I said it could be terrible, “terrible as an army with banners”, as Solomon said of Love. And I know as little of armies and love as I do—incidentally, if you don’t mind—of Russian verbs.

…. *reads* Although that’s why people don’t like exhortation; “Be good! It’s more dramatic!”

But my comments stand.

As for the specifically Russian and czarist-era elements, I think the importance here is to see that the familiar face of fascism is not the only one. (In a way, this could be quite liberal as well as liberating and true to see. The little birds are for Trump! The natalist babies, the little ones!) If I don’t read that much specifically American fiction—more Tolstoy than Steinbeck for some reason—it’s not because I think that America is uniquely awful, that one has to escape, that failures spouting fascism is our unique and essential experience…. Once there was an old lady who thought that peasants eating was as bad as nobles working, and she spoke in dulcet Slavic tones, you know. Life happens to everybody, which is why I don’t specialize in what I already know about.

…. “Nekhlyudov distinctly saw that both these men were richly endowed by nature, but had been neglected and crippled like uncared-for plants.” Cf West Indian Archie

…. There is a sense in which government has the power to aggravate evil, which is why if I had to choose between the two I guess I’d be an anarchist rather than a Marxist, because Marxist officialdom can exaggerate the evil of man just like czarist officialdom can, regardless of what the theories are or may be. But evil is prior to a civilization which might exaggerate it. Corruption can exist in simple people, and even in animals, about whom most people know little and usually care less. People are often romantic about animals, but animals like people can be good or bad, friendly or unfriendly, adapted or maladaptive, corrupted or healed, as surely as abused or kindly treated.

Nekhlyudov is probably something of an anarchist, a believer in Plato’s democracy and not a people’s tyranny really, which is sympathetic and a voice that should be heard, but about nature he is a romantic. I am like late Wordsworth; I loved nature, but it has wounded me.

…. Life makes me sick because of those who lie about God, but I cannot believe that sickness is of God like lies are of sickness.

…. I suppose we are all romantic about something, but some of us are romantic about the workings of watches, some of bread, and others of God.
  goosecap | Oct 10, 2021 |
Just wonderful. Tolstoy is so sharp, so modern, so biting. He may be my favorite Victorian ever. ( )
  asxz | Mar 13, 2019 |
I haven't read any Tolstoy for years, and I had very high expectations for this novel. What a disappointment. There's no subtlety, this book just clobbers you on the head, with plot, characters, themes, everything. While a lot of the criticism of the criminal justice system is interesting and, sadly, timeless, I found the story to fail as a novel. ( )
  breic | Jul 13, 2018 |
I would rather have read a finnish translation of this book and learned something. ( )
  alik-fuchs | Apr 27, 2018 |
In his youth, Prince Dmitri Nekhlyudov fell in love with Katusha Maslova, an orphan girl raised by his aunts. Unbeknownst to him, their brief affair resulted in pregnancy and Katusha was turned out of the house and left to find her way in the world. Many years later, Dmitri finds himself on a jury where Katusha is one of three accused of a crime. He learns Katusha turned to prostitution to survive. He is so worried their relationship will be discovered that he fails to advocate for her during jury deliberations, and she is sentenced to penal servitude in Siberia.

This experience has a strong effect on Dmitri. He feels at fault both for Katusha’s life circumstances and the sentence. He is also disillusioned by the court system, and shocked at the plight of the lower classes. Dmitri intercedes on Katusha’s behalf, working on legal appeals to reduce her sentence. He also believes he should marry her to improve her lifestyle (never mind whether Katusha wants this …). He puts his affairs in order and prepares to accompany Katusha to Siberia, while also advocating for other prisoners who have been unjustly convicted.

Published in 1899, Resurrection was Leo Tolstoy’s last novel, and through Dmitri he describes a dramatic shift in his own views on social issues of the day. As a treatise, it was probably quite effective. As a novel, I found it lacking in both plot and pacing. Dmitri saw himself as noble, but was actually weak and cowardly. Katusha is the stronger person, and I wish she had figured even more prominently in the novel. The ending is downright preachy, as Dmitri has a kind of “born again” experience and finds new purpose in life. Meh. ( )
1 vote lauralkeet | Mar 29, 2018 |
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» Add other authors (182 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Tolstoy, Leoprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Asemissen, HermannTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Hopper, RikaForewordsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Leclee, J.Translatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Leerink, HansTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
P., E. v.Translatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Scammell,, MichaelIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Thal, WilhelmTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Traill, VeraTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Westendorp, J.Translatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Wiener, LeoTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Epigraph
Then came Peter, and said to him, Lord, how oft shall my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? until seven times? Jesus saith unto him, I say not unto three, Until seven times: but, Until seventy times seven.- Matt. 18:21-2.
And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother's eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye? - Matt. 7:3
He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her. - John 8:7
The disciple is not above his master: but every one when he is perfected shall be as his master. - Luke 6:40.
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Nors žmonės, susibūrę keli šimtai tūkstančių į vieną nedidelę vietą, visaip stengėsi subiauroti žemę, kurioje jie grūdosi, nors visaip gringė akmenimis žemę, kad niekas neaugtų, nors visaip ravėjo kiekvieną prasikalusią žolelę, nors visaip dūmijo akmens anglim ir nafta, nors visaip genėjo medžius ir gujo lauk kiekvieną gyvulį bei paukštį,- pavasaris buvo pavasaris net ir mieste.
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Resurrection (1899) is the last of Tolstoy's major novels. It tells the story of a nobleman's attempt to redeem the suffering his youthful philandering inflicted on a peasant girl who ends up a prisoner in Siberia.Tolstoy's vision of redemption achieved through loving forgiveness, and his condemnation of violence, dominate the novel. An intimate, psychological tale of guilt, anger, and forgiveness, Resurrection is at the same time a panoramic description of social life in Russia at the end of the nineteenthcentury, reflecting its author's outrage at the social injustices of the world in which he lived.This edition, which updates a classic translation, has explanatory notes and a substantial introduction based on the most recent scholarship in the field.

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