Ideals and Realities in Russian Literature

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A.A. Knopf, 1916 - Russian literature - 339 pages
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Page 99 - He never does anything himself precisely, he has no vital force, no blood ; but who has the right to say that he has not been of use ? that his words have not scattered good seeds in young hearts, to whom nature has not denied, as she has to him, powers for action, and the faculty of carrying out their own ideas ? Indeed, I myself, to begin with, have gained all that from him.
Page 99 - I want to speak of what is good, of what is rare in him. He has enthusiasm ; and, believe me, who am a phlegmatic person enough, that is the most precious quality in our times. We have all become insufferably reasonable, indifferent, and slothful ; we are asleep and cold, and thanks to any one who will wake us up and warm us ! It is high time...
Page 99 - We have all become insufferably reasonable, indifferent, and slothful ; we are asleep and cold, and thanks to anyone who will wake us up and warm us! It is high time! Do you remember, Sasha, once when I was talking to you about him, I blamed him for coldness? I was right, and wrong too, then. The coldness is in his blood — that is not his fault — and not in his head. He is not an actor, as I called him, nor a cheat, nor a scoundrel; he lives at other people's expense, not like a swindler, but...
Page 254 - The Russian hero is always silly and stupid, he is always sick of something; always thinking of something that cannot be understood, and is himself so miserable, so m — i — serable!
Page 257 - You will agree with me," the stranger says, "that the duty of literature is to aid man in understanding himself, to raise his faith in himself, to develop his longing for truth; to combat what is bad in men; to find what is good in them, and to wake up in their souls shame, anger, courage; to do everything, in short, to render men strong in a noble sense of the word, and capable of inspiring their lives with the holy spirit of beauty.
Page 170 - Dostoyevsky has certainly won a unique position among the writers of modern times; and he will be read, not for the artistic finish of his writings, but for the good thoughts that are scattered through them, for their real reproduction of slum life in the great cities, and for the infinite sympathy which a being like Sonia can inspire in the reader.
Page 281 - No novel of Turgueneff and no writings of Tolstoy or any other writer have ever had such a wide and deep influence upon Russian society.
Page 99 - ... did for me in my youth. I also maintained, I recollect, that Rudin's words could not produce an effect on men ; but I was speaking then of men like myself, at my present age, of men who have already lived and been broken in by life. One false note in a man's eloquence, and the whole harmony is spoiled for us ; but a young man's ear, happily, is not so over-fine, not so trained. If the substance of what he hears seems fine to him, what does he care about the intonation I The intonation he will...
Page 99 - cried Bassistoff, ' that is justly spoken ! And as regards Rudin's influence, I swear to you, that man not only knows how to move you, he lifts you up, he does not let you stand still, he stirs you to the depths and sets you on fire !
Page 270 - States, where can we make our stand if not on principles enshrined in the Declaration of Independence and the Declaration of the Rights of Man...

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