Tolstoy’s Anna Karenina and what it means to be a virtuous woman

Starting at 864 pages, Tolstoy Anna Karenina difficult to summarize in a 750-word essay. That said, in short, Tolstoy’s longest novel—considered the best of all time by many—tells the story of two romantic relationships. There’s Anna and Vronksy, who’s caught in a lie and finally implodes, and there’s Kitty and Levin, who struggle at the … Read more

Fighting Idealism: Dorothea Brooks, Mary Garth, and George Eliot’s Middlemarch

The novel gives us heroes and heroines who struggle to overcome all kinds of challenges, from medieval monsters to modern bankruptcy. And we are really accustomed not only to respect but to understand with these heroic images. (Direct hand signal: who is the reader Pride and criticism and thought, “I know how and mr. Collins”?) … Read more