By Leo Tolstoy
"Anna Karenina" tells of the doomed love affair among the sensuous and rebellious Anna and the speeding officer, count number Vronsky. Tragedy unfolds as Anna rejects her passionless marriage and needs to undergo the hypocrisies of society. Set opposed to an unlimited and richly textured canvas of nineteenth-century Russia, the novel's seven significant characters create a dynamic imbalance, enjoying out the contrasts of urban and kingdom existence and all of the diversifications on love and relations happiness. whereas past models have softened the strong, and occasionally surprising, caliber of Tolstoy's writing, Richard Pevear and Larissa Volokhonsky have produced a translation real to his strong voice. This award-winning team's authoritative version additionally comprises an illuminating advent and explanatory notes. attractive, lively, and eminently readable, this "Anna Karenina" stands out as the definitive textual content for generations to return. "Pevear and Volokhonsky are straight away scrupulous translators and shiny stylists of English, and their amazing rendering permits us, as probably by no means earlier than, to understand the palpability of Tolstoy's 'characters, acts, situations.'" (James wooden, "The New Yorker")
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Additional info for Anna Karenina (Penguin Classics)
The author’s task was to manoeuvre us, for some seven or eight hundred pages, through and among these ordinary people and their doings. It was not that Tolstoy was so charmed by ordinary life. ’ As with the novella, so with the novel: the polemic of Anna Karenina rests on the ordinariness of its characters. Anna Karenina is polemical, first of all, in its genre. To publish such a book in the 1870s was an act of defiance, and Tolstoy meant it as one. By then the family novel was hopelessly out of fashion.
Mama? Mama’s up,’ the girl replied. Stepan Arkadyich sighed. ‘That means again she didn’t sleep all night,’ he thought. ’ The girl knew that there had been a quarrel between her father and mother, and that her mother could not be cheerful, and that her father ought to know it, and that he was shamming when he asked about it so lightly. And she blushed for him. He understood it at once and also blushed. ‘I don’t know,’ she said. ’ ‘Well, go then, my Tanchurochka. Ah, yes, wait,’ he said, still holding her back and stroking her tender little hand.
Among family and intimate friends, a diminutive of the first name is normally used, such as Tanya for Tatiana or Kostya for Konstantin, never coupled with the patronymic. Some of Tolstoy’s aristocrats have adopted the fashion of using English or Russified English diminutives – Dolly, Kitty, Betsy, Stiva. With the exception of Karenina, we use only the masculine form of family names. Oblónsky, Prince Stepán Arkádyich (Stiva) Princess Dárya Alexándrovna (Dolly, Dásha, Dáshenka, Dóllenka), his wife, oldest of the three Shcherbatsky sisters Shcherbátsky, Prince Alexander Dmítrievich or Alexandre (French) Princess (‘the old princess’, no first name or patronymic given), his wife Princess Ekaterína Alexándrovna (Katerína, Kitty, Kátia, Kátenka), their third daughter, later wife of Konstantin Levin Karénina, Anna Arkádyevna, née Princess Oblonsky, Stepan Arkadyich’s sister Karénin, Alexéi Alexándrovich, her husband Sergéi Alexéich (Seryózha, Kútik), their son Vrónsky, Count Alexéi Kiríllovich (Alyósha) Countess (no first name and patronymic given), his mother Alexander Kiríllovich, his brother Várya (diminutive of Varvára), née Princess Chirkóv, wife of Alexander Vronsky Lévin, Konstantín Dmítrich (Kóstya) Nikolái Dmítrich (Nikólenka), his brother Kóznyshev, Sergéi Ivánovich, half-brother of Konstantin and Nikolai Levin Lvov, Princess Natálya Alexándrovna (Natalie), née Shcherbatsky, sister of Dolly and Kitty Arsény (no patronym given), her husband Tverskóy, Princess Elizavéta Fyódorovna (Betsy), Vronsky’s first cousin Márya Nikoláevna (Masha, no family name given), companion of Nikolai Levin Agáfya Mikháilovna (no family name given), Levin’s former nurse, now his housekeeper Countess Lydia Ivánovna (no family name given), friend of Karenin Sviyázhsky, Nikolái Ivánovich, friend of Levin, marshal of nobility in Súrov district Katavásov, Fyódor Vassílyevich, friend of Levin Varvára Andréevna (Várenka, no family name given), friend of Kitty Veslóvsky, Vásenka (or Váska, diminutives of Vassíly, no patronymic given), friend of Oblonsky Yáshvin, Captain or Prince (no name or patronymic given), friend of Vronsky Vengeance is mine; I will repay.