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Anna Karenina
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Archived 2010 Group Reads > Anna Karenina 19: Part IV - Chapters 7-12

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message 1: by LynnB (last edited Aug 17, 2010 10:07PM) (new) - added it

LynnB Stepan Arkadyevitch has a new boss who gets up at 6 a.m. and likes to get work done. The way this is phrased, you get the feeling that the upper class workers in Russia would find this work ethic appalling. Meeting the new boss, however, Stiva finds that he likes him.

Stiva, who has a new ballerina mistress (which shows us he really didn't repent from his earlier indiscretion), invites Karenin, Levin, Kitty, and others to a dinner party that evening. Karenin tells him of his plans to divorce Anna and tries to refuse the invitation. Though a private meeting at home would probably have been better than a social event, Stiva hopes to use the party to talk Karenin out of the divorce. In this time period in Russia, divorce carried a great stigma, so Stiva rightly sees this as a major problem for his sister. At the dinner, Kitty and Levin see each other for the first time since the failed marriage proposal and it is obvious that they still love each other (let's hope it works out this time!). Stiva has also invited some intellectual friends over for discussions, which evolve into the discussion of women's education and rights.

The education of women is dangerous as it may be confused with the emancipation of women! One of the guests, Pestov, believes these two ideas are inseparable. Later, Pestov says to Alexy (not knowing the situation), that there are great inequality of rights in marriage, especially between the judgments made upon the infidelity of a woman vs. the infidelity of a man. Stiva tried to turn the conversation elsewhere, but Pestov brought it back and finally Alexy left the room. He began to talk to Dolly who, upon hearing the situation, could not believe her sister-in-law would ever do such a thing and pled that Stiva not divorce her. Alexy refused to listen and left. Lots of drama in this chapter!

Tolstoy discusses a lot of politics and social issues in this book. They are everywhere, throughout.

Trisha Hey everyone, I read Anna Karenina a while ago and I really enjoyed it! I will jump in with the next book on the list once it starts up, but I hope that everyone enjoys this novel as much as I did. :-)

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