One cannot do a quick read of his works because they were written to get a reaction and to question every aspect of life. The disagreement put a strain on the couple's marriage until Tolstoy begrudgingly agreed to a compromise: He conceded to granting his wife the copyrights — and presumably the royalties — to all of his writing predating 1881. Once the Crimean War ended and Tolstoy left the Army, he returned to Russia. In 1852, Tolstoy submitted the sketch to The Contemporary, the most popular journal of the time. Despite the success of Anna Karenina, following the novel's completion, Tolstoy suffered a spiritual crisis and grew depressed. Fiction. During his reign, he acquired vast amounts of land through ruthless means, creating a centrally controlled government. This led to a long correspondence where the two wrote to each other on religious and political matters. During his own life, he witnessed the painful death of his brother from tuberculosis, multiple deaths in the Crimean War and a public guillotining in Paris (which contributed to his rejection of the death penalty). Some characters were real historical people; others were invented. The following year, he wrote his third lengthy novel, Resurrection. Lying, stealing, promiscuity of every kind, drunkenness, violence, murder — there was not a crime I did not commit… Thus I lived for ten years.”. Later, looking back on these years (in his Confessions 1882), he bitterly regretted his misspent years, “I cannot recall those years without horror, loathing, and heart-rending pain. He then relates how he abandoned his belief in religion after one of his classmates, Vladimir Milyutin, announced that scientists had disproved the existence of God. During that time, he composed Boyhood (1854), a sequel to Childhood, the second book in what was to become Tolstoy's autobiographical trilogy. Tolstoy also became a leading critic of injustice, formal religion and the inequality of Tsarist Russia. Anxious to escape his wife's growing resentment, in October 1910, Tolstoy, his daughter, Aleksandra, and his physician, Dr. Dushan P. Makovitski, embarked on a pilgrimage. When Tolstoy's new beliefs prompted his desire to give away his money, his wife strongly objected. War and Peace has been ranked as one of the greatest novels of all time, for its rich characterisation and sweeping view of Russian society. Search all of SparkNotes Search. His output also includes plays and essays. He was known for sci-fi works like 'Foundation' and 'I, Robot. His work includes the 'The Sleeping Beauty' and 'The Nutcracker. He came to believe that Christian churches were corrupt and, in lieu of organized religion, developed his own beliefs. Narrated in the third person by an unnamed narrator the reader realises after reading the story that Tolstoy may be exploring the theme of governance. He was buried at the family estate, Yasnaya Polyana, in Tula Province, where Tolstoy had lost so many loved ones yet had managed to build such fond and lasting memories of his childhood. War and Peace in Yet he still struggled to reconcile his spiritual beliefs with the tensions they created in his home life. Russian physiologist Ivan Petrovich Pavlov developed his concept of the conditioned reflex through a famous study with dogs and won a Nobel Prize Award in 1904. Summary of Leo Tolstoy’s, “A Confession” January 5, 2015 Meaning of Life - Religion - Classics John Messerly Leo Tolstoy (1828 –1910) was a Russian writer widely regarded as one of the greatest novelists in all of literature. Originally published 22nd Jan. 2009. “Love is the only way to rescue humanity from all ills, and in it you too have the only method of saving your people from enslavement… Love, and forcible resistance to evil-doers, involve such a mutual contradiction as to destroy utterly the whole sense and meaning of the conception of love.” – Letters One from Tolstoy to Gandhi.