Fathers and Sons
by Ivan Turgenev
Fathers and Sons Man and the Natural World Quotes
How we cite our quotes: Citations follow this format: (Chapter.Paragraph). We used Rosemary Edmonds's translation.
"But you have picked on an excellent spot, and you're giving yourselves up to a fine occupation. Lying on the 'earth', gazing at the 'heavens'... Do you know there is an especial significance in that?" (21.122)
How does Vassily Ivanych's romantic attitude bind him to Nikolai Petrovich? What is the relationship between romanticism and a feeling of appreciation for nature? Why do you think that Bazarov lacks it? How would you describe the "significance" of lying on the earth and staring at the heavens?
It was a glorious fresh morning; tiny mottled cloudlets hovered overhead like fleecy lambs in the clear blue sky; fine beads of dew lay on the leaves and grass, and sparkled like silver on the spiders' webs; the moist dark earth still seemed to glow with the rosy tints of dawn; in every quarter of the heavens the larks poured out their song. Bazarov walked as far as the copse, sat down in the shade at its edge and only then disclose to Piotr the nature of the service he expected of him. (24.51)
Note that this is the natural description preceding the duel between Bazarov and Pavel. How does the description affect the way that the reader perceives their duel? Does it make it seem more ridiculous than it already does? Do you think Bazarov, who lacks any appreciation for nature whatsoever, can see the disconnect?
"How can I explain? ... He's a wild beast, while you and I are domestic animals." (25.20)
What do you make of Katya's distinction between Bazarov and Arkady? Does it strike you as ironic that she thinks Bazarov a wild animal even though he has no interest in nature? What about Bazarov makes him a "wild animal"? In what way are Katya and Arkady "domesticated"?