Tolstoy: A Russian Life

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Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, Nov 8, 2011 - Biography & Autobiography - 544 pages
19 Reviews

“Magisterial sweep and scale.”—The Independent (UK)

In November 1910, Count Lev Tolstoy died at a remote Russian railway station. At the time of his death, he was the most famous man in Russia, with a growing international following, and more revered than the tsar. Born into an aristocratic family, Tolstoy had spent his life rebelling against not only conventional ideas about literature and art but also traditional education, family life, organized religion, and the state.

In this, the first biography of Tolstoy in more than twenty years, Rosamund Bartlett draws extensively on key Russian sources, including much fascinating material made available since the collapse of the Soviet Union. She sheds light on Tolstoy’s remarkable journey from callow youth to writer to prophet; discusses his troubled relationship with his wife, Sonya; and vividly evokes the Russian landscapes Tolstoy so loved and the turbulent times in which he lived. Above all, Bartett gives us an eloquent portrait of the brilliant, maddening, and contrary man who has once again been discovered by a new generation of readers.

 

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Review: Tolstoy: A Russian Life

User Review  - David James - Goodreads

Bartlett, Rosamund. Tolstoy: A Russian Life This book is not an exegesis of War and Peace or Anna Karenina, but a meticulously detailed life of Pyotr Andreyevich Tolstoy, the man. A glance at Bartlett ... Read full review

Review: Tolstoy: A Russian Life

User Review  - Hall's Bookshop - Goodreads

Fascinating; it was really good actually. It was all about he sort of combined his social concern with his aristocratic background, and his religious convictions in mildly atheistic communist Russia. And he's got a bit about a bicycle as well. Read full review

Contents

Introduction
1
The Tolstoys and the Volkonskys
11
2 Aristocratic Childhood
31
3 Orphanhood
55
4 Youth
68
5 Landowner Gambler Offi cer Writer
83
6 Literary Duellist and Repentant Nobleman
118
7 Husband Beekeeper and Epic Poet
149
12 Elder Apostate and Tsar
345
Patriarch of the Bolsheviks
416
Notes
455
Further Reading in English
498
Select Bibliography
499
List of Illustrations and Illustration Credits
508
Acknowledgements
510
Index
511

8 Student Teacher Father
180
9 Novelist
214
Photos
250
10 Pilgrim Nihilist Muzhik
251
11 Sectarian Anarchist Holy Fool
294
Back Flap
545
Back Cover
546
Spine
547
Copyright

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About the author (2011)

Rosamund Bartlett's previous books include Wagner and Russia and the acclaimed Chekhov: Scenes from a Life. An authority on Russian cultural history, she has also achieved renown as a translator of Chekhov.

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