March 20, 2014

Leo Tolstoy: Beware Your Contradictions

Tolstoy's new, simpler life was not, however, without its struggles and contradictions. Apart from the fact that he preached universal love yet was constantly fighting with his wife, the apostle of equality was never able to fully abandon his wealth and privileged lifestyle, and lived till old age in a grand house with servants. When he mooted the idea of giving away his estate to the peasants, his wife and children were furious, and he eventually backed down. But in the early 1890s he managed, against their wishes, to relinquish copyright to a huge portion of his literary works, in effect sacrificing a fortune. In his last years, when writers and journalists came to pay homage to the bearded sage, they were always surprised to find the world's most famous author chopping wood with some workers or making his own boots. Given the privileged position in which Tolstoy started life, his personal transformation, if not complete, still deserves our admiration.

1 comment:

Unknown said...

Really good movie on Tolstoy:

The Last Station‎