Tolstoy Family in Recently Released Books

Yasnaya Polyana

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The International Scientific Conference “Leo Tolstoy and World Literature” underway at the writer’s Yasnaya Polyana museum-estate will culminate in a presentation of books dedicated to the renowned Russian classic by his 100th death anniversary. Director of the Tolstoy Museum Vitaly Remizov was interviewed by the Voice of Russia to highlight some of the publications.

Above all, Vitaly Remizov refers to books covering different aspects of the writer’s family life. It is no secret that Tolstoy’s relations with his wife Sophia were far from perfect, as revealed in her autobiographical book “My Life”.

"This book is penetrated with so much suffering. Given her complicated personality both by nature and upbringing, Sophia Andreyevna strived for accentuating her role in the life of her husband on the one hand, and all the hardships, discomfort and dramas of her own life on the other hand. As a matter of fact, Sophia Tolstoy was always in the public eye," said Vitaly Remizov.

Another book to be presented at the conference is called “Spiritual Image of My Mother”, based on the Tolstoy Museum collection, Vitaly Remizov says:

"We decided to use the archives of Leo Tolstoy’s mother to create this book. She was a highly gifted person, kept diaries about her travels, observations of her children’s education, maintained a constant correspondence with relatives and even wrote poems. The book also contains thoughts and comments by Leo Tolstoy himself."

This year, marking the centenary of the great writer’s death, will witness the release of an album dedicated to Leo Tolstoy’s mysterious departure from his home in Yasnaya Polyana in October 1910 and his death at the god-forsaken railway station of Astapovo in November. Moscow’s Tolstoy Museum possesses materials which help get at the truth of what happened in the Tolstoy family ahead of the tragedy. That year saw publications of diaries belonging to the writer’s daughter Alexandra Tolstoy and her friend Varvara Feokristova, who was also Leo Tolstoy’s assistant, and correspondence between family members from July 1910 till the classic’s death. Vitaly Remizov shares his view:

"In the twilight of this life, Leo Tolstoy, this great person who deserved respect and a right of freedom, became a “prisoner”, forced to withstand growing pressure from all sides. With advancing age, the writer was continually exposed to sufferings he ultimately managed to outride with honor."

That was Director of the Tolstoy Museum Vitaly Remizov commenting upon new books published for the centenary of the classic’s death.

Source: Voice of Russia
13 August, 2010