The Kreutzer Sonata, And Other Stories : Book 02, Chapter 06

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1889

People

(1828 - 1910) ~ Father of Christian Anarchism : In 1861, during the second of his European tours, Tolstoy met with Proudhon, with whom he exchanged ideas. Inspired by the encounter, Tolstoy returned to Yasnaya Polyana to found thirteen schools that were the first attempt to implement a practical model of libertarian education. (From : Anarchy Archives.)
• "...the dissemination of the truth in a society based on coercion was always hindered in one and the same manner, namely, those in power, feeling that the recognition of this truth would undermine their position, consciously or sometimes unconsciously perverted it by explanations and additions quite foreign to it, and also opposed it by open violence." (From : "A Letter to a Hindu: The Subjection of India- Its....)
• "The Government and all those of the upper classes near the Government who live by other people's work, need some means of dominating the workers, and find this means in the control of the army. Defense against foreign enemies is only an excuse. The German Government frightens its subjects about the Russians and the French; the French Government, frightens its people about the Germans; the Russian Government frightens its people about the French and the Germans; and that is the way with all Governments. But neither Germans nor Russians nor Frenchmen desire to fight their neighbors or other people; but, living in peace, they dread war more than anything else in the world." (From : "Letter to a Non-Commissioned Officer," by Leo Tol....)
• "There are people (we ourselves are such) who realize that our Government is very bad, and who struggle against it." (From : "A Letter to Russian Liberals," by Leo Tolstoy, Au....)

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Book 02, Chapter 06

CHAPTER VI.

The brothers, having finished their houses, moved into them and lived apart from their father and brother. Ivan, when he had completed his plowing, made a great feast, to which he invited his brothers, telling them that he had plenty of beer for them to drink. The brothers, however, declined Ivan’s hospitality, saying, “We have seen the beer moujiks drink, and want none of it.”

Ivan then gathered around him all the peasants in the village and with them drank beer until he became intoxicated, when he joined the Khorovody (a street gathering of the village boys and girls, who sing songs), and told them they must sing his praises, saying that in return he would show them such sights as they had never before seen in their lives. The little girls laughed and began to sing songs praising Ivan, and when they had finished they said: “Very well; now give us what you said you would.”

Ivan replied, “I will soon show you,” and, taking an empty bag in his hand, he started for the woods. The little girls laughed as they said, “What a fool he is!” and resuming their play they forgot all about him.

Some time after Ivan suddenly appeared among them carrying in his hand the bag, which was now filled.

“Shall I divide this with you?” he said.

“Yes; divide!” they sang in chorus.

So Ivan put his hand into the bag and drew it out full of gold coins, which he scattered among them.

“Batiushka,” they cried as they ran to gather up the precious pieces.

The moujiks then appeared on the scene and began to fight among themselves for the possession of the yellow objects. In the melee one old woman was nearly crushed to death.

Ivan laughed and was greatly amused at the sight of so many persons quarreling over a few pieces of gold.

“Oh! you duratchki” (little fools), he said, “why did you almost crush the life out of the old grandmother? Be more gentle. I have plenty more, and I will give them to you;” whereupon he began throwing about more of the coins.

The people gathered around him, and Ivan continued throwing until he emptied his bag. They clamored for more, but Ivan replied: “The gold is all gone. Another time I will give you more. Now we will resume our singing and dancing.”

The little children sang, but Ivan said to them, “Your songs are no good.”

The children said, “Then show us how to sing better.”

To this Ivan replied, “I will show you people who can sing better than you.” With that remark Ivan went to the barn and, securing a bundle of straw, did as the little devil had directed him; and presently a regiment of soldiers appeared in the village street, and he ordered them to sing and dance.

The people were astonished and could not understand how Ivan had produced the strangers.

The soldiers sang for some time, to the great delight of the villagers; and when Ivan commanded them to stop they instantly ceased.

Ivan then ordered them off to the barn, telling the astonished and mystified moujiks that they must not follow him. Reaching the barn, he turned the soldiers again into straw and went home to sleep off the effects of his debauch.

From : Gutenberg.org

Chronology

November 30, 1888 :
Book 02, Chapter 06 -- Publication.

February 16, 2017 19:29:03 :
Book 02, Chapter 06 -- Added to http://www.RevoltLib.com.

May 28, 2017 15:35:39 :
Book 02, Chapter 06 -- Last Updated on http://www.RevoltLib.com.

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