Marriage - Marriage Containing a discussion of at least...

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Unformatted text preview: Marriage Containing a discussion of at least three marriages, rather than just one as in Madame Bovary, Anna Karenina provides an authoritative and thorough, if not definitive, treatment of the subject. Stiva's relationship with Dolly suggests the incomplete relationship between Karenin and Anna. The Oblonskys' problems only seem lighter because of the double standard: It is less serious for a husband to stray than for a wife, since family unity depends on the woman. Tolstoy shows us that men's primary interests are outside the home, whereas women, like Dolly, center their existence on the family. Stiva, Vronsky, and Karenin, unlike Levin, divide their lives sharply between their homes and amusements, and they are each startled, through the incidents of the novel, to confront the previously ignored feelings of their wives. The divided pattern of these marriages, moreover, allows previously ignored feelings of their wives....
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