Анна Каренина PDF/EPUB µ


Анна Каренина Acclaimed by many as the world's greatest novel Anna Karenina provides a vast panorama of contemporary life in Russia and of humanity in general In it Tolstoy uses his intense imaginative insight to create some of the most memorable characters in literature Anna is a sophisticated woman who abandons her empty existence as the wife of Karenin and turns to Count Vronsky to fulfil her passionate nature with tragic conseuences Levin is a reflection of Tolstoy himself often expressing the author's own views and convictionsThroughout Tolstoy points no moral merely inviting us not to judge but to watch As Rosemary Edmonds comments 'He leaves the shifting patterns of the kaleidoscope to bring home the meaning of the brooding words following the title 'Vengeance is mine and I will repay Tolstoy draws a portrait of three marriages or relationships that could not be different Anna Karenina is rightly called a masterpiece Moreover Tolstoy does not spare on social socialism and describes the beginnings of communism deals with such existential themes as birth and death and the meaning of lifeTolstoy’s narrative art and his narrative charm are at the highest level He also seems like a close observer of human passions feelings and emotions All in all I was touched by his book because it was one of the most impressive books I have ever readKendi yüceliğinin yüksekliğinden bana bakmasına bayılıyorum Sayf 55Belki de sahip Olduğum şeylere sevindiğim sahip olmadıklarıma da üzülmediğim için mutluyumSayf 167Kadın dediğin öyle bir yaratık ki istediğin kadar incele gene de hiç bilmediğin yanlarıyla karşılaşıyorsunSayf 168Insana akıl onu huzursuz eden şeylerden kurtulması için verilmiştirSayf 758 As a daughter of a Russian literature teacher it seems I have always known the story of Anna Karenina the love the affair the train the whole shebang I must have ingested the knowledge with my mother's milk as Russians would sayMy grandpa had an old print of a painting hanging in his garage A young beautiful mysterious woman sitting in a carriage in wintry Moscow and looking at the viewer through her heavy lidded eyes with a stare that combines allure and deep sadness Who's that? I asked my grandpa when I was five and without missing a beat he answered Anna Karenina Actually it was A Stranger by Ivan Kramskoy 1883 but for me it has always remained the mysterious and beautiful Anna Karenina the femme fatale of Russian literature Imagine my childish glee when I saw this portrait used for the cover of this book in the edition I chose Yet Anna Karenina is a misleading title for this hefty tome as Anna's story is just the tip of an iceberg as half of the story is devoted to Konstantin Levin Tolstoy's alter ego Count Leo's Russian name was Lev Lev Levin preoccupied with Russian peasantry and its relationship to land as well as torn over faith and his lack of it Levin whose story continues for chapters after Anna meets her train But Anna gives the book its name and her plight spoke to me than the philosophical dealings of an insecure and soul searching Russian landowner and so her story comes first Sorry Leo LevinAnna's chapters tell a story of a beautiful married woman who had a passionate affair with an officer and then somehow in her uest for love began a downward spiral fueled by jealousy and guilt and societal prejudices and stifling attitudes But I'm glad you will see me as I am The chief thing I shouldn't like would be for people to imagine I want to prove anything I don't want to prove anything; I merely want to live to do no one harm but myself I have the right to do that haven't I?On one hand there's little new about the story of a forbidden passionate overwhelming affair resulting in societal scorn and the double standards towards a man and a woman involved in the same act Few readers will be surprised that it is Anna who gets the blame for the affair that it is Anna who is considered fallen and undesirable in the society that it is Anna who is dependent on men in whichever relationship she is in because by societal norms of that time a woman was little else but a companion to her man There is nothing new about the sad contrasts between the opportunities available to men and to women of that time and the strong sense of superiority that men feel in this patriarchial world No there is nothing else in that tragic as it may be Anything only not divorce answered Darya AlexandrovnaBut what is anything?No it is awful She will be no one's wife she will be lostNo where Lev Tolstoy excels is the portrayal of Anna's breakdown Anna's downward spiral the unraveling of her character under the ingrained guilt crippling insecurity and the pressure the others and she herself place on her Anna a lovely energetic captivating woman full of life and beauty simply crumbles sinks into despair fueled by desperation and irrationality and misdirected passion And he tried to think of her as she was when he met her the first time at a railway station too mysterious exuisite loving seeking and giving happiness and not cruelly revengeful as he remembered her on that last momentA calm and poised lady slowly and terrifyingly descends into fickle moods and depression and almost maniacal liveliness in between tormented by her feeling of imagined abandonment and little self worth and false passions which are little else but futile attempts to fill the void the never ending emptiness This is what Tolstoy is a master at describing and this is what was grabbing my heart and sueezing the joy out of it in anticipation of inevitable tragedy to come In her eyes the whole of him with all his habits ideas desires with all his spiritual and physical temperament was one thing—love for women and that love she felt ought to be entirely concentrated on her alone That love was less; conseuently as she reasoned he must have transferred part of his love to other women or to another woman—and she was jealous She was jealous not of any particular woman but of the decrease of his love Not having got an object for her jealousy she was on the lookout for it At the slightest hint she transferred her jealousy from one object to anotherYes it's the little evils the multitude of little faces of unhappiness that Count Tolstoy knows how to portray with such sense of reality that it's uite unsettling be it the blind jealousy of Anna or Levin be it the shameless cheating and spending of Stiva Oblonsky be it the moral stuffiness and limits of Arkady Karenin the parental neglects of both Karenins to their children the lies the little societal snipes the disappointments the failures the pervasive selfishness All of it is so unsettlingly well captured on page that you do realize Tolstoy must have believed in the famous phrase that he penned for this book's opening line Happy families are all alike; every unhappy family is unhappy in its own wayTolstoy is excellent at showing that despite what we tend to believe getting what you wanted does not bring happiness Vronsky meanwhile in spite of the complete realization of what he had so long desired was not perfectly happy He soon felt that the realization of his desires gave him no than a grain of sand out of the mountain of happiness he had expected It showed him the mistake men make in picturing to themselves happiness as the realization of their desires And yet just like in real life there are no real villains no real unsympathetic characters that cause obstacles for our heroes the villains whom it feels good to hate No everyone in addition to their pathetic little ugly traits also has redeeming ualities Anna's husband despite appearing as a monster to Anna after her passionate affair still is initially willing to give her the freedom of the divorce that she needs Stiva Oblonsky repulsive in his carelessness and cheating wins us over with his gregarious and genuinely friendly personality; Anna herself despite her outbursts is a devoted mother to her son at least initially Levin may appear to be monstrous in his jealousy but the next moment he is so overwhelmingly in love that it's hard not to forgive him And I love this greyness of each character so lifelike and fullAnd of course the politics so easily forgettable by readers of this book that carries the name of the heroine of a passionate forbidden affair The dreaded politics that bored me to tears when I was fifteen And yet these are the politics and the uestions that were so much on the mind of Count Tolstoy famous to his compatriots for his love and devotion to peasants that he devoted almost half of this thick tome to it discussed through the thoughts of Konstantin Levin Levin a landowner with a strong capacity for compassion self reflection and curiosity about Russian love for land as well as a striking political apathy is Tolstoy's avatar in trying to make sense of a puzzling Russian peasantry culture which failed to be understood by many of his compatriots educated on the ideas and beliefs of industrialized Europe He considered a revolution in economic conditions nonsense But he always felt the injustice of his own abundance in comparison with the poverty of the peasants and now he determined that so as to feel uite in the right though he had worked hard and lived by no means luxuriously before he would now work still harder and would allow himself even less luxuryI have to say I understood his ideas this time but I could not really feel for the efforts of the devoted and kind landowner striving to understand the soul of Russian peasants Maybe it's because I mentally kept fast forwarding mere 50 years to the Socialist Revolution of 1917 that would leave most definitely Levin and Kitty and their children dead or less likely in exile; the revolution which as Tolstoy almost predicted focused on the workers and despised the loved by Count Leo peasants the revolution that despised the love for owning land and working it that Tolstoy felt was at the center of the Russian soul But it is still incredibly interesting to think about and to analyze because even a century and a half later there's still enough truth and foresight in Tolstoy's musings after all Even if I disagree with so many of his views they are still thought provoking no doubts about it If he had been asked whether he liked or didn't like the peasants Konstantin Levin would have been absolutely at a loss what to reply He liked and did not like the peasants just as he liked and did not like men in general Of course being a good hearted man he liked men rather than he disliked them and so too with the peasants But like or dislike the people as something apart he could not not only because he lived with the people and all his interests were bound up with theirs but also because he regarded himself as a part of the people did not see any special ualities or failings distinguishing himself and the people and could not contrast himself with themIt's a 35 star book for me Why? Well because of Tolstoy's prose of course because of its wordiness and repetitiveness Yes Tolstoy is the undisputed king of creating page long sentences which I love by the way love that is owed in full to my literature teacher mother admiring them and making me punctuate these never ending sentences correctly for grammar exercises But he is also a master of restating the obvious repeating the same thought over and over and over again in the same sentence in the same paragraph until the reader is ready to cry for some respite This as well as Levin's at times obnoxious preachiness and the author's freuently very patriarchial views was what made this book substantially less enjoyable than it could have been By the way there is an excellent 1967 Soviet film based on this book that captures the spirit of the book uite well and if you so like has a handy function to turn on English subtitles first part is here and the second part is here I highly recommend this filmAnd even better version of this classic is the British TV adaptation 2000 with stunning Helen McCrory as perfect Anna and lovely Paloma Baeza as perfect Kitty In the beginning reading Anna Karenin can feel a little like visiting Paris for the first time You’ve heard a lot about the place before you go Much of what you see from the bus you recognize from pictures and movies and books You can’t help but think of the great writers and artists who have been here before you You expect to like it You want to like it But you don’t want to feel like you have to like it You worry a little that you won’t But after a few days you settle in and you feel the immensity of the place opening up all around you You keep having this experience of turning a corner and finding something beautiful that you hadn’t been told to expect or catching sight of something familiar from a surprising angle You start to trust the abundance of the place and your anxieties that someone else will have eaten everything up before your arrival relax Maybe that simile reveals about me than I’d likeMy favorite discovery was the three or four chapters out of the book’s 239 devoted to of all things scythe mowing—chapters that become a celebratory meditation on physical labor When I read those chapters I felt temporarily cured of the need to have something “happen” and became as absorbed in the reading as the mowers are absorbed in their work Of course the book is about Anna and Vronsky and Levin and Kitty and Dolly and poor stupid Stepan Arkadyich It’s about their love and courtship and friendship and pride and shame and jealousy and betrayal and forgiveness and about the instable variety of happiness and unhappiness But it’s also about mowing the grass and arguing politics and hunting and working as a bureaucrat and raising children and dealing politely with tedious company To put it accurately it’s about the way that the human mind—or as Tolstoy sometimes says the human soul—engages each of these experiences and tries to understand itself the world around it and the other souls that inhabit that world This book is not afraid to take up any part of human life because it believes that human beings are infinitely interesting and infinitely worthy of compassion And what I found stirring the book’s fearlessness extends to matters of religion Tolstoy takes his characters seriously enough to acknowledge that they have spiritual lives that are as nuanced and mysterious as their intellectual lives and their romantic lives I knew to expect this dimension of the book but I could not have known how encouraging it would be to dwell in it for so longIn the end this is a book about life written by a man who is profoundly in love with life Reading it makes me want to live Spoiler alert If you have read this book please proceed If you are never going to read this novel be honest with yourself then please proceed If you may read this novel but it may be decades in the future then please proceed Trust me you are not going to remember no matter how compelling a review I have written If you need Tolstoy talking points for your next cocktail party or soiree with those literary black wearing pseudo intellectual friends of yours then this review will come in handy If they pin you to the board like a bug over some major plot twist that will be because I have not shared any of those If this happens do not despair; refer them to my review I’ll take the heat for you If they don’t know who I am then they are frankly not worth knowing Exchange them for other enlightened intellectual friends“He soon felt that the fulfillment of his desires gave him only one grain of the mountain of happiness he had expected This fulfillment showed him the eternal error men make in imagining that their happiness depends on the realization of their desires” Anna Arkadyevna married Alexei Alexandrovich Karenin a man twenty years her senior She dutifully produced a son for him and settled into a life of social events and extravagant clothes and enjoyed a freedom from financial worries Maybe this life would have continued for her if she had never met Count Alexei Kirillovich Vronsky but than likely her midlife crisis her awareness of the passage of time would have compelled her to seek something ”They say he’s a religious moral honest intelligent man; but they don’t see what I’ve seen They don’t know how he has been stifling my life for eight years stifling everything that was alive in me but he never once even thought that I was a living woman who needed love They don’t know how he insulted me at every step and remained pleased with himself Didn’t I try as hard as I could to find a justification for my life? Didn’t I try to love him But the time has come I’ve realized that I can no longer deceive myself that I am alive that I am not to blame if God has made me so that I must love and live And what now? If he killed me if he killed him I could bear it all I could forgive it all but no he”Her husband was enad with her but then so was everyone who met her male or female Maybe he was too contented with their life together and therefore took their relationship for granted He was two decades older so the passions of romance didn’t burn with as hot a flame She wanted passion from him even if it was to murder her lover and herself Even if it was something tragic she wanted something to happen something that would make her feel something I couldn’t help thinking early on that the problem wasn’t with her husband certainly nothing that a new lover could fix for very long The same face was always going to greet her in the mirror The same thoughts were always going to swim their way back to the surface We can not mask the problems within ourselves by changing lovers The mask will eventually slip and all will be revealed Ugly can be very prettyIs there such a thing as being too beautiful? Can being so beautiful make someone cold disdainful and unable to really feel empathy or even connected to those around them? Her type of beauty is a shield that insulates her even as her insecurities swing the sword that stabs the hearts of those who despise her and those who love her ”She was enchanting in her simple black dress enchanting were her full arms with the bracelets on them enchanting her firm neck with its string of pearls enchanting her curly hair in disarray enchanting the graceful light movements of her small feet and hands enchanting that beautiful face in its animation; but there was something terrible and cruel in her enchantment”My favorite character in this epic was Konstantin Kostya Dmitrich Levin He was a well meaning wealthy landowner who unusually for the times went out and worked the land himself He got his hands dirty enough that one could actually call him a farmer He was led to believe by his friends and even the Shcherbatsky family that their youngest daughter Kitty would be an affable match for him Kitty’s older sister Dolly was married to Stepan Stiva Arkadyich Oblonsky who was the brother to Anna Karenina Stiva was recently caught and forgiven for having a dalliance with a household staff but no sooner was he out of that boiling water of that affair before he was having liaisons with a ballerina This did lead me to believe that life would never be satisfying for either Stiva or his sister Anna because there was always going to be pretty butterflies to chase as the attractiveness of the one they had began to fade Before Vronsky became gobsmacked by Anna he was leisurely chasing after Kitty and leading her on just long enough for Kitty to turn Levin’s marriage proposal down flat That was like catching a molotok hammer right between the eyes as a serp sickle swept Kostya off his feet Interestingly enough later in the book Levin met Anna Karenina after he has married Kitty you’ll have to read the book to discover how this comes about and he was captivated by Anna It was almost enough for me start chain smoking Turkish cigarettes or biting my nails down to the uick while I waited for the outcome Substitute Anna for Jolene and you’ll know what I was humming ”She had unconsciously done everything she could to arouse a feeling of love for her in Levin and though she knew that she had succeeded in it as far as one could with regard to an honest married man in one evening and though she liked him very much as soon as he left the room she stopped thinking about him”If she was irritated with Vronsky one day maybe she would just seduce Levin for entertainment because she could I must say that I didn’t think much of Vronsky at the beginning of the novel but as the plot progressed I started to sympathize with him Tolstoy was brilliant at rounding out characters so our preconceived notions or the projections of ourselves that we place upon them are forced to be modified as we discover about them Levin had his own problems He had been reading the great philosophers looking for answers He found uestions than answers in religion He abandoned every lifeboat he climbed into and swam for the next one ”Without knowing what I am and why I’m here it is impossible for me to live And I cannot know that therefore I cannot live” The problem that every reasonably intelligent person wrestles with is that no matter how successful we are no matter how wonderful a life we build or how well we take care of ourselves we are going to die It is irrefutable Cemeteries don’t lie Well there is a lot of eternal lying down going on but no duplicity None of us are going to escape the reaper No one is ascending on a cloud or going to the crossroads to make a deal with the Devil We all have to come face to face with death and we can’t take any of our bobbles accolades or power with us So the uestion that Levin ended up asking himself the Biggest uestion even beyond why am I here? isWhy do anything? Without immortality everything we attempt to do can seem futile Some would make the case that we live on in our kids and grandkids I say bugger to that I want time Well there are ways to be immortal and one of them is to write a masterpiece like Anna Karenina that will live forever By the end I am ready to throttle Anna until her pretty eyes bug out of her head and her cheeks turn a vibrant pink but at the same time she seemed to be suffering from a host of mental disorders She was so cut off from everyone and so disdainful of everyone ”It was impossible not to hate such pathetically ugly people” The “friends” she had had been ostracized from her by her own actions I had to believe her loathing of people was a projection of how she felt about herself She needed some time on Carl Jung’s couch but he was a wee tot when this book was published She needed to find some satisfaction in the ordinary and uit believing that a change in geography or in lovers was ever going to fix what was wrong with herself She had such a destructive personality One man tried to kill himself from her actions and another contemplated the act She was maliciously vengeful when someone didn’t do something she wanted them to do; and yet I couldn’t uite condemn her completely Her feelings of being stifled were perfectly natural We all feel that way at points in our lives We feel trapped by the circumstances of our life Her attempt to break free in the 1870s in Russian society was bravefoolish She sacrificed everything to chase a dream The dream ate her This book is a masterpiece not just a Russian masterpiece but a true gift to the world of literature If you wish to see of my most recent book and movie reviews visit also have a Facebook blogger page at

  • Mass Market Paperback
  • 960 pages
  • Анна Каренина
  • Leo Tolstoy
  • English
  • 09 February 2015
  • 9780451528612

About the Author: Leo Tolstoy

Лев Николаевич Толстой; commonly Leo Tolstoy in Anglophone countries was a Russian writer who primarily wrote novels and short stories Later in life he also wrote plays and essays His two most famous works the novels War and Peace and Anna Karenina are acknowledged as two of the greatest novels of all time and a pinnacle of realist fiction Many consider Tolstoy to have been one of the world's greatest novelists Tolstoy is eually known for his complicated and paradoxical persona and for his extreme moralistic and ascetic views which he adopted after a moral crisis and spiritual awakening in the 1870s after which he also became noted as a moral thinker and social reformerHis literal interpretation of the ethical teachings of Jesus centering on the Sermon on the Mount caused him in later life to become a fervent Christian anarchist and anarcho pacifist His ideas on nonviolent resistance expressed in such works as The Kingdom of God Is Within You were to have a profound impact on such pivotal twentieth century figures as Mohandas Gandhi and Martin Luther King Jr


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