Keywords: Leo Tolstoy, “Master and Man”, creative history, text history, artistic image, parable, characters, speech characteristics.
For citation:

Andreeva V. G. Leo Tolstoy’s work on the images of characters of the short story “Master and Man”// Two centuries of the Russian classics, 2020, vol. 2, № 1, pp. 224–243. (In Russ.)

DOI 10.22455/2686-7494-2019-2-1-224-243

Author: Valeria G. Andreeva
Information about the author:

Valeria G. Andreeva, ORCID 0000-0002-4558-3153, DSc in Philology, Leading Researcher, A.M. Gorky institute of World Literature of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Povarskaya 25a, 121069, Moscow, Russia

E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Received: January 17, 2019
Published: March 24, 2020
Issue: 2020 Volume 2 No. 1
Department: Russian literature XVIII and XIX centuries
Pages: 224-243
DOI: 10.22455/2686-7494-2020-2-1-224-243
UDK: 821.161.1.09"19"

Abstract: The article is dedicated to making sense of Leo Tolstoy’s work on images of the characters of the short story “Master and Man”, to analytical study of the conceptual changes made to the text by the writer. Characterising the short story’s style, the author of the article states that bright oppositions, presence of clear assessments of characters’ behavior, moral and ethical guidelines make Leo Tolstoy’s narrative somewhat parable-like, while artistic images in such a “parable” narrative are expressive. Main elements of the plot are already present in the first draft edition of the short story, but there is still lack of the heroes’ characters integrity in it. Leo Tolstoy’s work on the short story went in two directions. First, the writer paid much attention to the finale, carefully thinking through descriptions of the characters’ inner monologues and states of mind; to Vasily Brekhunov’s awareness of his former life’s falseness and illusory. Events of Vasily Andreyevich’s sudden clarification, and him saving Nikita are both presented psychologically accurately and convincing; the writer reveals the fundamental change that took place in the consciousness of Vasily Brekhunov, but the hero’s character, the way of his behaviour remain the same. Second, the writer carefully thought through all the slightest components of pictorial, seeking to create holistic and consistent images of the characters. Leo Tolstoy assessed the depth of their opposition, removed details that could distract the reader from the central idea of the short story, whereas some secondary motifs and descriptions were transformated into artistic details by him.


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