The Importance Of Naturalism In Russian Realist Drama

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Russian Realist drama represents a notable shift from the earlier literary periods, for it displays everyday life in the 19th-century Russia in all its complexity. Moreover, it offers various levels of analyzing a certain play, for it intertwines elements of both Sentimentalism and Romanticism, but adds more to them by incorporating naturalism and violence, thus giving the readers’, i.e. the spectators’ the opportunity to fully understand the life in Russia at the time. All these elements are displayed in Ostrovsky’s play The Storm, Sukhovo-Kobylin’s The Death of Tarelkin, and Tolstoy’s The Power of Darkness. All three authors have used naturalism to create a more dramatic effect on the reader, i.e. spectator. As an aesthetic, naturalism refers to accurate visual representation of both nature and characters in a play. More specifically, in the abovementioned plays, it is used to expose all the ugliness of characters, both physical and mental. This is achieved masterfully through numerous scenes, and it most certainly affects the reader, inducing the feelings of pity and fear Aristotle was advocating for. Moreover, naturalism helps the performance of the play be more theatrical. However, the reader is by no means deprived of recognizing naturalism in a play, for it affects him/her mentally, as well. For example, death is the most common topic in The Storm, The Death of Tarelkin, and The Power of Darkness. The authors even emphasized it in the titles of the plays, i.e. there

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