Fathers and Sons | gtfd.info
In this article, I want to explore these relationships of politics, culture, and ideas . Soon after this incident, both Arkady and Bazarov leave for the latter's home.  For about the political problems that liberals confronted in Tsarist Russia, . Turgenev initially portrays Arkady as a youth and Bazarov as a man. trip forms the primary cracks in Arkady and Bazarov's leader-follower relationship; Arkady sows doubtful seeds in Arkady's mind and he first questions Bazarov's doctrine. The novel depicts the problems inherent with the emancipation reforms that freed the Relations are awkward with all of them until Bazarov and Arkady leave.
Suppose Bazarov had not died from typhus at the end of the book and an extra chapter had been added on to talk about what happened to him in the end. Based on the transformation he undergoes in the novel, how do you predict he would have spent the rest of his life?
Fathers and Sons: Chapter 20,21,22
Write a short plot summary detailing what would take place in this extra chapter. Love The idea of romantic love permeates the novel and is most apparent with Arkady and Bazarov, who experience two different types of love. Arkady experiences a love that is based on friendship.
Before he even meets his true love, Katya, he is smitten by Madame Anna Odintsov. Unfortunately, the older woman looks at him "as married sisters look at very young brothers. He "encouraged her to express the impressions made on her by music, reading novels, verses, and other such trifles, without noticing or realizing that these trifles were what interested him too.
For Bazarov, on the other hand, the love is more passionate, forceful. Bazarov shows the signs of an irrational love at his first meeting with Anna. While she is sitting calmly, "leaning back in her easy-chair," and "He, contrary to his habit, was talking a good deal, and obviously trying to interest her—again a surprise for Arkady. A life for a life. Take mine, give up thine, and that without regret or turning back.
Or else better have nothing. The various provincial settings—Maryino, Nikolskoe, Vassily Ivanovitch's unnamed homestead—are seen as backward and uneducated when compared with the cities, which are vibrant with new ideas and scholarship. As Bazarov notes to Arkady at one point, if they were to look at their fathers' country existence from a certain perspective, it could be seen as enjoyable, having a routine to keep busy: On a different occasion, Arkady, who likes the nature one finds in the country, challenges Bazarov: Nature's not a temple, but a workshop, and man's the workman in it.
Arkady cannot do this, however, and he eventually comes to prefer the country, moving into Maryino with his new wife and his father's family, where Arkady becomes "zealous in the management of the estate" and turns it into a prosperous affair. Irony A situation is ironic when its outcome is contrary to what the character and reader expects. In Turgenev's novel this happens many times.
For example, Vassily Ivanovitch describes the bitter irony of the generation gap when talking to his son and Arkady about a philosopher of whom they are enamored: However, when Arkady's son grows up, Arkady will no doubt realize, as Nikolai does, that aging and the decline of one's ideas is "a bitter pill" and that every new generation is ready to tell the old to "swallow your pill. Bazarov is against love because there is no control over it, and it overpowers the senses that he holds dear and by which he rules his life.
It is ironic, therefore, that Bazarov is stricken blind with love for Anna, and admits to her, "I love you like a fool, like a madman. The cruelest irony of the novel, however, is the death of Bazarov. The young nihilist who appreciates the hard sciences more than anything else goes to the village, "where they brought that peasant with typhus fever. Unfortunately, in the process, he makes a careless mistake and cuts himself, contracting the infection that soon kills him. It is tragically ironic that Bazarov's quest for knowledge is the thing that kills him in the end.
Point of View The novel is told by a third person omniscient, or all-knowing, narrator who has the power to go within any character's mind and display their thoughts. For example, when Bazarov and Pavel get in their first argument over their beliefs, Nikolai thinks to himself, "You are certainly a nihilist, I see that," although what he says aloud is "Still, you will allow me to apply to you on occasion.
However, there is a notable exception in the narration: Historical Context Fathers and Sons is tied to Russia's history, particularly to the period of social unrest and reform that began to come to a head with the rule of Alexander II.
Following the Crimean Warduring which Alexander came to power inRussian society—and Alexander himself—was made painfully aware of Russia's backward place in the world. These were old concerns that were reawakened with the loss of aboutmen and some of Russia's land. This war was not received well in society and as a result, Alexander, who had been taught by an artistic, romantic tutor, and who was sympathetic to liberal concerns, sought reform. Pitting himself against the landowners who owned serfs, Alexander began to talk about abolishing serfdom.
Says Victor Ripp, in his Turgenev's Russia: From "Notes of a Hunter" to "Fathers and Sons": In this time of uneasiness, Turgenev chose to set his book.
As Ripp notes, "it is the spring ofand the emancipation of the serfs, with all its uncertain consequences, is only two years ahead. Nikolai Petrovitch, a more liberal landowner, has already freed his serfs before he is required to, although he is wary about giving his former slaves any control in any major business affairs.
Some, especially the older Russian nobility with much land to lose, decried the reforms, like Bazarov's mother. She used to be a member of the landed gentry, but turned her land over to the care of her husband, a poor, retired army surgeon. She "used to groan, wave her handkerchief, and raise her eyebrows higher and higher with horror when her old husband began to discuss the impending government reforms. As the narrator notes of the young governor's official sent to a provincial town, he "was a young man, and at once a progressive and a despot, as often happens with Russians.
The same was true about the behavior of the lower classes. When given any power at all, they abused it, as Nikolai's farm manager does: As Ripp notes, "In its efforts to please all factions, the Editing Committee produced an immensely complicated document. He drives around his district, giving long speeches that say the same thing over and over again, but as Turgenev's narrator notes, "to tell the truth, he does not give complete satisfaction either to the refined gentry … nor to the uncultivated gentry….
He is too soft-hearted for both sets. As Ripp notes, Turgenev is aware of all of this as he writes the book ina year after the act has been implemented: Under the leadership of Alexander II Russia embarks on a number of social reforms, including abolishing serfdom and improving communications, such as establishing more railroad lines.
Russia remains a poor and unstable country after the fall of the Soviet Union at the end of the twentieth century. In the wake of the brutal dictatorial regime that ruled "communist" Russia and other Soviet countries for much of the twentieth century, the plight of many Russians has worsened. Like those in other countries, many of Russia's youth adhere to a scientific materialism philosophy, questioning everything with a strict rationalism and not letting any "irrational" behavior overcome them.
In many civilized countries there is a resurgence in art, nature, and other humanistic pursuits, due in large part to humanity's increasing dependence upon technology. Although modern medicine is improving with the such developments as vaccines, the "germ theory" of disease, and improved sanitation in hospitals, doctors are largely powerless.
When cholera sweeps across Europe and Russia, many are killed. In most modernized countries, cholera and typhus, which are usually prevalent in poor, unsanitary areas, have been wiped out. Epidemic typhus persists in countries that experience famine, crowded living conditions, and other areas where sanitation is an issue.
Cholera, on the other hand, has been largely dormant, and has not seen a major outbreak for more than a decade. Critical Overview Inwhen Turgenev first gave the manuscript for Fathers and Sons to his editor Mikhail Nikiforovich Katkov, the Russkii vestnik Russian Her-ald editor was concerned about the potential backlash over the novel.
- A comparison of Arkady and Bazarov, from Turgenevs Fathers and Sons
Katkov had reason to be concerned. As Edward Garnett notes in his Turgenev, "the stormy controversy that the novel immediately provoked was so bitter, deep, and lasting that the episode forms one of the most interesting chapters in literary history.
It was with this second group that Turgenev had found favor with through the publication of some of his earlier works in Sovremennik Contemporary. However, the same critics who had praised Turgenev's earlier works now offered harsh criticism for Fathers and Sons as they had for Turgenev's previous novel, Nakanune. One of the most vocal critics from The Contemporary was M. Antonovich, who remarked that Bazarov "is not a man, but some horrible being, simply a devil or, to express oneself more poetically, a foul fiend.
Gertsen, notes that in the book, "gloomy, concentrated energy has spoken in this unfriendly attitude of the young generation to its mentors. Pisarev, another of the younger radicals, was the only critic from his political party who did not describe Bazarov as a "vicious caricature" of the radicals, as Leonard Schapiro notes in Turgenev: His Life and Times. Instead, Pisarev writes to both radicals and liberals: Turgenev himself recounts what is now a famous anecdote from his life, when he returned to Petersburg in on the same day that young radicals—calling themselves "nihilists"—were setting fire to buildings: This problem was underscored by Turgenev's own conflicting views on the character.
Although he stated in a March 30 letter to Fyodor Dostoyevsky that "during all the time of writing I have felt an involuntary attraction for him," he stated in a different letter on April 18 to A.
I don't know that myself, for I don't know if I love or hate him! Peter Henry notes that "it is a brilliant stroke of irony on Turgenev's part that Bazarov and Pavel Petrovich, so sharply contrasted in every way, are endowed with an essential identity as unsuccessful lovers.
Even the minor characters are deftly sketched in. Poquette Poquette holds a bachelor's degree in English and specializes in writing about literature. In the following essay, Poquette discusses the many views of women in Turgenev's novel. In Turgenev's Fathers and Sons, women play very important and influential roles in the plot. Anna Odintsov attracts Arkady and Bazarov, who are both trying to remain true to their nihilistic beliefs, which attempt to deny love—an irrational force.
This surrender to love shakes the very core of Bazarov's foundation. Eventually, he tries again at love, stealing a kiss from Fenitchka, which leads to the duel with Pavel. In the meantime, Katya wins over Arkady. Women are at the center of just about every major plot point in the book. But what does Turgenev think about women in general? The author makes several contradictory statements—through his characters—about how women are viewed, but in the end, he indicates that women are a necessary force, and a saving and nurturing influence on men.
At the beginning of Fathers and Sons Turgenev introduces four men, all of whom are strong Russian males. Arkady comes home from school a graduate, and brings his friend Bazarov, a nihilist with very powerful views. Almost at once, this younger generation of men conflicts with the older generation—Arkady's father; Nikolai, a liberal landowner; and Arkady's uncle Pavel, a retired military officer. Pavel does not like Bazarov from the start, calling him an "unkempt creature" after his first meeting with the younger man.
This tension escalates when the younger men start expressing their radical views. Arkady informs his father and uncle that nihilists regard "everything from the critical point of view," and in the conversations between the two generations over the next fortnight, the young men criticize many of the institutions that the older generation holds dear.
Bazarov—backed by Arkady—denounces all irrational pursuits including art, claiming, "a good chemist is twenty times as useful as any poet. However, just as this struggle culminates in the silly and ineffectual duel between Bazarov and Pavel, the men's manly debates are also ultimately ineffectual.
While these strong men argue about philosophy and art, they are being quietly conquered by women who, like Fenitchka, only seem meek and mild, as when Fenitchka brings in Pavel's cup of cocoa and "dropped her eyes" in the presence of the men.
In fact, through his male characters especially, Turgenev expresses many of the views of women that were prevalent at the time. One of the dominant views was that women were not very smart and could not hold their own against literate men. As Bazarov notes to Arkady about his own mother, "If a woman can keep up half-an-hour's conversation, it's always a hopeful sign.
When Kukshin learns that Bazarov is interested in chemistry, she thinks they have something in common: That is my passion.
Fathers and Sons Study Guide | Novelguide
I've even invented a new sort of composition myself. She's worth educating and developing. You might make something fine out of her. Arkady remarks "what an exquisite woman" Anna is, while Bazarov says, somewhat condescendingly, "Yes … a female with brains. Their house is small, six rooms, and run down. They eat a wonderful meal, and then Bazarov wants to go to bed. He asks his father to leave The theme of the young versus the old continues when Bazarov and Arkady interact with the old couple.
He has nothing to do with his mother. We hear that the mother is afraid of him at the end of the chapter. The very first night, he asks his father to leave his room because he says he wants to go to sleep, but after his father leaves, he stays up for some time.
Again, Turgenev is exploring this theme of relationships, especially between fathers and sons, with Bazarov and his father. What causes the distance between Bazarov and his own father? Summary Arkady and Vasily visit in the vegetable garden where Vasily is digging a bed for turnips Vasily asks Arkady what he thinks of his son.
Arkady praises Bazarov and says that Bazarov will be famous someday, and he thinks the world of him Bazarov comes and he and Arkady are lying in the shade, and they talk about their childhood. By consistently developing and juxtaposing these forces, Turgenev is able to clarify these two alternatives that were available for the reform of Russia.
Bazarov best represents and articulate the philosophy of nihilism with his self-absorption, disruptive behavior, and preoccupation with science.
At Maryino, Bazarov becomes associated with his microscope, his dissections, and his laboratory. He shuts himself off from the beauty of nature and its regenerative elements in favor of scientific experimentation. Like Francis Bacon, Bazarov perceives nature as a phenomenon to inspect, dominate, and eventually control with human beings having no special place in the world and being no different from the frogs that he cuts open to investigate.
But it is the familial disruptions where Bazarov causes the most damage, especially in the relationships among the Nikolai, Pavel, and Arkady. Bazarov not only pits the son against the father, but he also creates conflict between the two brothers, Nikolai and Pavel.
When asked whether this is a good or bad thing, Arkady is evasive: A fuller account of nihilism is drawn out later in the novel when Bazarov and Pavel are engaged in a heated disagreement about the validity of nihilism. In these days the most useful thing we can do is to repudiate — and so we repudiate.
Consequently, nihilism is a philosophy that recognizes no authorities but is guided by practical conduct on a heuristic basis.
Its initial task is to destroy everything and not be concerned with what will appear later. Of course, this desire to destroy everything and offer nothing is ultimately self-negating as dramatically portrayed in the fate of Bazarov with his unrequited love for Odinstov, his damaged friendship with Arkady, and ultimately his deathbed recognition that this philosophy, to which he has dedicated his whole life, is ultimately unfulfilling.
For Turgenev, this philosophy of nihilism provides neither personal meaning nor societal reform. Not surprisingly, the person with whom Bazarov falls in love is Odinstov, whose internal rigidity prevents her from fully engaging in anything beyond her own self-absorption: Having no prejudices of any kind, and no strong convictions even, she was not put off by obstacles and she had no goal in life.
She had clear ideas about many things and a variety of interests, but nothing ever completely satisfied her; indeed, she did not really seek satisfaction. Her mind was at once probing and indifferent; any doubts she entertained were never soothed into oblivion, nor ever swelled into unrest Although she knew exactly what she was doing, Odinstov was unable to relinquish control.
What both of these characters reveal dramatically are the harmful consequences that nihilism has on people if adopted. The frustrations that Pavel had encountered in his futile pursuit of Princess R— ultimately disillusioned him: Both Pavel and Bazarov are also arrogant and disputatious. They gain much of their identity from the forceful expression of their attitudes and in the defense of them. Never contributing anything positive to conversation, Bazarov always leave others to define his positions and then spends the rest of the time defending his alleged positions.
Because of their self-absorption, disagreement is no longer about resolution but the continuation of disputation itself. When Pavel and Bazarov duel, they are engaged in a symbolic ritual of self-destruction where each wants to destroy the worst qualities they see in themselves: Although the cause is Bazarov kissing Fenichka and the dishonor it brings to Nikolai, both wonder whether this is the true motive of the duel. And is a kiss so very important? The duel is less about who wins than about the problem of chronic self-absorption with its attendant pride that leads to misunderstanding and violence.
Thus, the nihilism represented by Bazarov, and to a lesser extent Odinstov and Pavel, possesses characteristics that are incapable of providing individuals meaning and renewing society. Regenerative Liberalism Although Turgenev rejects nihilism, he does recognize that aspects of the philosophy are valid.
The impracticability of, or simple indifference to, the plight of the peasantry of the Russian gentry, as illuminated respectively by Nikolai and Pavel, are both serious threats to the social stability and reform of nineteenth-century Russia. Throughout the novel Bazarov is able to have the most natural, friendly, and spontaneous relationships with the peasants, unlike his often fractious and disruptive relationships with the aristocracy.
Bazarov identifies with the peasantry, unlike the other characters: Ask any of your peasants which of us — you [Pavel] or me- he would more readily acknowledge as a fellow-countryman. The problem with nihilism for Turgenev is that it throws the baby out with the bathwater: Children are associated with innocent, love, and regeneration — qualities that are alien to Bazarov.
As representative of regenerative liberalism, Arkady sees Bazarov with increasing objectivity that he ultimately rejects nihilism. Thus, Arkady never claims to reject all principles: For instance, Arkady has a genuine concern for the peasantry, which may be the reason why he became a nihilist.
In a later conversation with Pavel, Arkady states: We are bound to carry out these requirements, we have no right to indulge in the gratification of our personal egotism. Whereas Arkady is a nihilist because he sincerely wants to improve society, Bazarov is a nihilist for his own personal egoism. It is also important to note that Arkady never loses his love for his family, the arts, or nature. Although Arkady denies that he spoke out of family feelings but rather out of justice, it is clear that he does want to defend his family because he loves them and he does not want to admit that to Bazarov because it might be perceived as a sign of weakness The setting of the garden itself is a reference to both the prelapsarian and fallen state of the Garden of Eden.
For Arkady, who appreciates nature, and Katya, who, like Fenichka, is associated with flowers throughout the novel, the garden reveals their aesthetic appreciation for nature. I can see that I am going to surprise you.
I seem to remember your reproaching me yesterday for a lack of seriousness. That reproach is often leveled at. If I might hope. Arkady is beleaguered with the fears that interfere with young love: Although we are not sure to what Odinstov is responding, Arkady recognizes his love for Katya is something larger and more significant than himself and provides him the spiritual regeneration that has incapacitated Bazarov and Odinstov. Life is not one of intellectual and spiritual fatigue for Arkady and Katy but instead one of renewal and harmony with each other and with the world.
This silence stands in stark contrast to the conversation of half-truths and sarcasm that transpires between Bazarov and Odinstov. It requires silence to appreciate not only each other but also nature and the arts. Silence consequently is the revealing but elliptical expression of love between Arkady and Katya and the hope of a happy and harmonious future together.
The future of Arkady and Katya is one that combines the critical perspective of nihilism with the constructive aspects of regenerative liberalism as they marry and start a family with their son, little Nikolai. Children are perhaps the most closely associated with the regenerative characteristics of life in the novel as they will continue the existence of Russia. Although Bazarov gets along with children, he does not have one due to his premature death.
What is required is someone like Arkady who adopts the critical perspective of nihilism and the constructive elements of regenerative liberalism in order to reorient the individual and to improve society. Unlike his father, Nikolai, who had aspirations for reforming his estate to become profitable but lacked the critical perspective to accomplish this project, Arkady is able to implement reform because of his rejection of nihilism and embracement of regenerative liberalism.
A preoccupation only with the family, the arts, and nature does not necessarily result into practical results, e. Regenerative liberalism, therefore, is the psychological capacity to integrate emotions and reason for the sake of positive social and political action.
It adopts the critical perspective of nihilism but also preserves the traditional values of the family, the arts, and nature as regenerative qualities that enable us to identify and empathize with others. In this sense, Arkady and his family represent a positive path for Russia to reform itself as a liberal polity.
As he declared his love to Katya, Arkady recognizes that the debt he owes her in changing him from a callow youth into a mature adult: However, this recognition only transpires when he becomes confident enough to declare his love clearly to Katya, who in turn reciprocates it.