laughter gives way
In the military stories (“Raid”, “Forest Cutting”, “Sevastopol in December 1854, in May and August 1855”) Tolstoy dwells on the question of how legitimate war, demanding so many bloody victims, is legitimate . This idea is particularly clear in his “Sevastopol Tales” (see their analysis), which describe the famous defense of Sevastopol during the Crimean War.
Battles and wars were depicted many times in Russian and foreign literature … – Almost always, these pictures are different, “poetizatsii”, elevated tone, a kind of “militarism, glorifying the exploits of warriors and leaders … Continue reading
The Gogol story “The Overcoat” (see its full text, summary and analysis) depicts a petty, downtrodden and pathetic official Akaky Akakiyevich Bashmachkin (see his description in the text of the work). He is so humiliated, so intimidated, so offended by fate that, apart from the mechanical rewriting of papers, he does not know how to do anything. He says more pronouns and interjections, is afraid of mocking co-workers and trembles in front of the authorities. Continue reading