War and Peace SummaryTolstoy fought in the Crimean War, adding to the realism of his accounts of the Napoleonic struggle. Soon after, he experienced a religious conversion, gave up all his material wealth, and lived out his remaining days in the simple life of a peasant. This work, written in , has been termed an epic because it portrays history as cyclical. To Tolstoy, every human being holds great influence over others. And even as the novel draws to a close, the births and lives of the second generation begin their ever-more influential, historical journeys along the never-ending river of life. Story Overview During a magnificent ball held in St Petersburg, Pierre and Prince Andrey, close friends, sat to one side discussing the rise of Napoleon, who had single-handedly saved his country from inner destruction. But now the same Frenchman waged war against Russia, and everyone held differing viewpoints on how best to defend their motherland.
War and Peace
We are introduced to the major families through the vehicle of a soiree at the Anna Pavlovna's home, a name-day celebration at the Rostovs, and a description of the isolated existence of the Bolkonskys at their country seat. Prince Andrey and Pierre discuss their futures and what they seek in life, both young men idealizing the"man of destiny" who is soon to invade Russia. Old Count Bezuhov dies, leaving Pierre wealthy, titled, and the most eligible bachelor in Petersburg. They each discover the ineffectuality of the individual in a mass situation. Nikolay accepts being a"cog in a machine" and Andrey rejects being part of the administering forces, choosing, instead, to fight at the front. Pierre marries Ellen; Anatole unsuccessfully courts Marya.
Look Inside Reading Guide. Reading Guide. Dec 02, ISBN Oct 05, ISBN And as the novel progresses, these characters transcend their specificity, becoming some of the most moving—and human—figures in world literature. Leo Tolstoy — was born in central Russia.
War and Peace opens in the Russian city of St. We also meet the sneaky and shallow Kuragin family, including the wily father Vasili, the fortune-hunter son Anatole, and the ravishing daughter Helene. We are introduced to the Rostovs, a noble Moscow family, including the lively daughter Natasha, the quiet cousin Sonya, and the impetuous son Nicholas, who has just joined the army led by the old General Kutuzov. Both Andrew and Nicholas go to the front. Andrew is wounded at the Battle of Austerlitz, and though he survives, he is long presumed dead. Helene cheats on Pierre, and he challenges her seducer to a duel in which Pierre nearly kills the man. Meanwhile, Pierre, disillusioned by married life, leaves his wife and becomes involved with the spiritual practice of Freemasonry.
This free synopsis covers all the crucial plot points of War and Peace. Many of the novel's characters are introduced at a society hostess's party, among them.
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The characters in War and Peace endure extreme experiences, and emerge at the end as quite different people. The miracle of the book is that the Natasha who falls in love with anyone and everyone in the ballrooms of the opening is recognisably the same woman who withdraws from society at the end. This is the story of a group of people living within a society. It understands and sympathises with those ideas but it excuses itself from repeating them. After pages, you will agree that this is the best way to write a novel. Its details are not exquisite recreations of lost practice, but ways in which an individual psychology can engage with the real world.
We meet a lot of people at a party in Petersburg a. Saint Petersburg, Russia. Andrei is married to Liza, a social butterfly whom he kind of hates. Pierre likes to booze it up and cruise the ladies, but his friend Andrei wants him to straighten up and fly right. Pierre wants to quit the bad behavior, but gets sucked into it by Anatole Kuragin.