Fathers and Sons, by Ivan TurgenevIvan Turgenev's Fathers and Sons explores the ageless conflict between generations through a period in Russian history when a new generation of revolutionary intellectuals threatened the state. Returning home after years away at university, Arkady is proud to introduce his clever friend Bazarov to his father and uncle. But their guest soon stirs up unrest on the quiet country estate - his outspoken nihilist views and his scathing criticisms of the older men expose the growing distance between Arkady and his father. And when Bazarov visits his own doting but old-fashioned parents, his disdainful rejection of traditional Russian life causes even further distress. In Fathers and Sons , Turgeneve created a beautifully-drawn and highly influential portrayal of the clash between generations, at a time just before the end of serfdom, when the refined yet vanishing landowning class was being overturned by a brash new breed that strove to change the world. Peter Carson's elegant, naturalistic new translation brings Turgenev's masterpiece to life for a new generation of readers. In her introduction, Rosamund Bartlett discusses the novel's subtle characterisation and the immense social changes that took place in the s Russia of Fathers and Sons.
Fathers and Sons
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Look Inside Reading Guide. Reading Guide. Nov 13, ISBN Dec 18, ISBN When Fathers and Sons was first published in Russia, in , it was met with a blaze of controversy about where Turgenev stood in relation to his account of generational misunderstanding. Was he criticizing the worldview of the conservative aesthete, Pavel Kirsanov, and the older generation, or that of the radical, cerebral medical student, Evgenii Bazarov, representing the younger one?
How does nihilism challenge the conservative order of nineteenth-century Russia? Since the uprising of the Decembrists in , Russia had to deal with recurrent insurgence and turmoil due to popular Russian discontent with the prevailing Tsarist system, missing human rights, inequalities, and poverty. During the Crimean War between and , Russia tried to expand its territory at the expense of the Ottoman Empire; however, the allies France, Great Britain and Piedmont-Sardinia defeated Russia soundly. It became apparent that Russia did not only lack behind in regard to infrastructure and latest technology but it also was not able to carry on its policy of serfdom while aspiring toward economic growth with the help of rapid industrialization. The main protagonists are graduate Arkady Kirsanov and his friend Bazarov, prospective doctor of medicine, who Arkady sees as his mentor and teacher of nihilistic ideas.
Turgenevs mother, Varvara Petrovna was her uncle's only heir and ruled over her vast estates and five thousand serfs with an iron hand. A Lutovin, an obscure family to have recently acquired enormous wealth, three years after coming into her inheritance she married Sergey Nikolayevich Turgenev, a retired colonel.
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This view has implications for his view of human beings and society, which are, to him, just expressions of mechanical nature. But by portraying…. At the beginning of Fathers and Sons , both Arkady and Bazarov are reunited with their parents after years away, and both struggle to come to terms with the contrast between their university-educated, cutting-edge outlook on life and the more traditional ways still embraced by their families of origin. Which guides should we add? Request one!
The novel is also the first Russian work to gain prominence in the Western world, eventually gaining the approval of well established novelists Gustave Flaubert, Guy de Maupassant, and Henry James, proving that Russian literature owes much to Ivan Turgenev. This work is in the public domain in the United States because it was legally published within the United States or the United Nations Headquarters in New York subject to Section 7 of the United States Headquarters Agreement before , and copyright was not renewed. Works published in would have had to renew their copyright in either or , i. As it was not renewed, it entered the public domain on 1 January Might be regarded as the first wholly modern novel in Russian Literature Gogol's Dead Souls, another main contender, is sometimes referred to as a poem or epic in prose as in the style of Dante's Divine Comedy. The novel introduces a dual character study, as seen with the gradual breakdown of Bazarov's and Arkady's nihilistic opposition to emotional display, especially in the case of Bazarov's love for Madame Odintsova and Fenichka. This prominent theme of character duality and deep psychological insight would exert an influence on most of the great Russian novels to come, most obviously echoed in the novels of Tolstoy and Dostoevsky.