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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars We're Old ... And Done For
The struggle between the generations. It's nasty, heartbreaking and futile. And it's easily recognisable by about all young men who've fought to build a personality independent of their parents. The young regard with disdain efforts by the ancients to "understand" the new generation. The old recall with regret their vanquished youth and cannot understand why their...
Published on 21 May 2009 by demola

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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars American English
British readers should be aware that this edition of Fathers and Sons is translated into American English. If you can live with "gotten", "envisioning", "catching on fire" and the rest of it it's a decent version of a wonderful book but personally I find the idiom jarring and I'll stick with my disintegrating Penguin Classics paperback.
Published 8 months ago by Dr. David Griffiths


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9 of 12 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A book containing wider issues., 18 Nov 2000
By A Customer
In this book, arguably representing the zenith of Turgenev's writing ability, a fascinating insight into Russian life is portrayed. Admittedly not the easiest of reads, there are still immense benefits to be gained from assessing all the points that Turgenev raises. The plot is essentially one of conflict and of ideas on a variety of levels. The broader context is one of a changing Russia. At a crucial time in its history, with ideas of westernisation, liberalism and serf emancipation sweeping the country, the internal dilemmas Russia faced are manifested in the books main characters. Bazarov, an obtuse and obstinate young man meets the father and uncle of Arkady, a son returning home to the family estate for the first time after graduating from university. The ensuing relationships are fascinating. Bazarov, a nihilist, inevitably finds conflict with Arkady's uncle, a traditional militaristic Russian and also leads both Arkady and his father Nicholas to question themselves and their beliefs and how as middling nobles, they should react to this and place themselves within the great debate. Furthermore, the relationships between Nicholas and the peasants - how they react to emancipation and how he deals with them on a more personal level - provides great entertainment within the story. An impressive piece of Russian literature which offers an interesting alternative to works by Tolstoy or Dostoyevsky, Fathers and Sons provides a story of people, and of relationships in a crucial period of Russia's history prior to the revolution and many readers will note the underlying themes of the book as telling us as much about Imperial society as about Turgenev's storytelling technique.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Insightful dissection of a political idea, 3 Dec 2013
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This review is from: Fathers and Sons (Wordsworth Classics) (Paperback)
FATHERS AND SONS treats Nihilism succinctly, far more than any other book I can think of. It makes the idea easy to understand through true to life characters that we can relate to. It is important because the ideas and methods of the most notorious Nihilists-Nechayev is taken very seriously by Al-Qaeda and other terrorist organizations.

Bazarov who is the hero of the novel, is skeptical of people, institutions, ideas, and all the other trappings of civilization and does not hide his willingness to go about bringing down what he rejects.

Friedrich Nietzsche put forward an argument that the corrosive effects of Nihilism would eventually destroy all moral, religious, and metaphysical convictions and precipitate the greatest crisis in human history. Nihilistic themes such as epistemological failure, value destruction, and cosmic purposelessness--have preoccupied artists, social critics, and philosophers in the 20th century.

The fact that patterns of nihilism were indeed a conspicuous feature of collapsing civilizations, means it should be taken seriously. Its resurgence had an effect in the collapse of states, especially in Eastern Europe. Overall, this poetically written and entertaining classical novel deserves the highest of respects. In addition, The Union Moujik, classic Russian Stories like Crime and Punishment, A Hero of Our Times, are some of the recommended books to read that not only expose the depths of ideas, but also the effects of ideas on minds that are political.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Fathers and Sons, 1 Feb 2013
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One of my all time favourite novels - lost my original copy so this was a replacement as I know I shall read and re-read
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4.0 out of 5 stars "Liberalism, progress, principles...to a Russian they're not worth a straw.", 14 Jan 2013
This review is from: Fathers and Sons (Paperback)
First published in 1861, Turgenev's classic novel is dominated by the young radical Bazarov, whose arrival in the Russian provinces causes upheaval amongst his comfortably liberal hosts. Bazarov is a nihilist - a proto-anarchist - who takes a trenchantly negative view of just about everything, especially the progressive political ideals of his parents' generation. Hard to like him, until some self-doubt seeps in. His opponent, the would-be English gentleman Pavel Petrovich, is easier to take...but Turgenev's characters are gratifyingly complex and the reader's sympathies shift throughout this surprisingly modern novel.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant but Spoilt by the End, 11 Oct 2012
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Turgenev can not be matched by other Russian classical writers for his brilliant understanding of human psychology. He writes brilliant love storys and the central character of Fathers and Sons is brilliant, there are manny other brilliant characters in this book as well. The great weakness of the book however and it is true of Turgenev's On the Eve is Turgenev's inability to deal with his central characters he creates them with great potential and then what? Where to from here? so he kills them off. Turgenev has a style which is compact and to the point which is wonderfall, a bit like Thorogoods short novels such as A Foxtrot Through India.Turgenev is more than worth a read he is a must read.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars ... this book so can't remember which one was the better translation. The book is a classic - but ..., 4 July 2014
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This review is from: Fathers and Sons (Kindle Edition)
I bought two different versions of this book so can't remember which one was the better translation. The book is a classic - but one of the translations was pretty terrible so purchasers should be cautious when buying.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars excellent depiction of the tensions in Russian society, 23 Feb 2014
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This review is from: Fathers and Sons (Wordsworth Classics) (Paperback)
more informative than a history book for me.. How was a society this compromised still able to limp on for another fifty years and how did Russia ever get so distant from western Europe?.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Generations, 30 Jan 2014
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This review is from: Fathers and Sons (Wordsworth Classics) (Paperback)
Took me a while to get in to this but a classic look at the gap between generations and how parents and children try to connect.

Book was in good condition and delivered on time
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Very Good - but not a CD, 14 May 2012
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A very good product. But one note of caution: despite the description, this is NOT a CD - it's an MP3D. So if you are expecting to be able to play it on a regular CD-player you will be disappointed. It will however play on a regular DVD-player or laptop or desktop computer.
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7 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the greatest books you shall ever read., 14 Sep 2000
By A Customer
So you probably haven't heard of this book, and you may not even have heard of Turgenev. In brief, this was the man at the beginning, the start of it, the original top banana.
Dostoevsky himself took this book as something to aspire to!
Featuring the nice guy, the depressive nihilist, the delightful love interest, the less interesting female and plenty of other characters.
Imagine the sort of character structure and depth of Anna Karenina, but in one tenth of the length, and yet just as rewarding and fascinating.
No clues to the ending, but I can say that it is a rarity - an ending that ties up the story and doesn't just ask a question. (Like, what's going on and why don't you explain it rather than ending here.)
Love it!
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Fathers and Sons (Wordsworth Classics)
Fathers and Sons (Wordsworth Classics) by Ivan Sergeyevich Turgenev (Paperback - 1 Feb 1996)
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