Known As One Of The Greatest Authors Of His Time, Leo Tolstoy,

1509 WordsMar 20, 20177 Pages
Known as one of the greatest authors of his time, Leo Tolstoy, tells a remarkable story in his novella, The Death of Ivan Ilych. Romantics in the 19th century were intrigued by and constantly writing about death in romanticized ways such as: death by honor, death for love, or brutal murders. Yet the death of Tolstoy’s character, and even the character himself, is quiet unremarkable in comparison to the deaths in other works circulating at the time. In The Death of Ivan Ilych an ordinary man, Ivan, who is a government official comes down with an illness that is untreatable. He suffers a slow, painful, and very lonely death. It is hard not to feel compassion for Ivan when the most significant thing he has done in life is die. An analysis of…show more content…
This causes him to isolate himself from the world and later become dissatisfied. What makes Ivan happy is being self-centered. If it does not revolve around him or bring him pleasure, Ivan wants no part in it. It is sad to say that dying is really just about the most important thing that Ivan Ilych does in his life. Other than in his final moments, Ivan’s life appears to be extremely mediocre and unpleasant. "Ivan Ilych 's life had been most simple and most ordinary and therefore most terrible" (Tolstoy). One of the most prominent characteristics of Ivan is that he lives his life by the expectations of others. Instead of using his own judge of character and relying on his own reasoning, he mimics the values and beliefs of the upper-class society. Ivan is so intently drawn to the those who have a higher social standing than him. He tries to imitate their mannerisms and lifestyle believing if he does so than his own life will progress and he will find fulfilment. He wants to be seen and known by all of the people of the middle class. However, he is just like everyone else—not important at all. The things that intrigue Ivan are mediocre and would not impress someone of a higher class. His pleasures are divided into three categories: work, social life, and bridge. With work he takes pleasure in ambition, socially he lives in vain, and playing bridge brings him the utmost happiness. When working Ivan feels important
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