Anna Karenina-Indirect Characterization

Anna Karenina: Tolstoy's Use Of Indirect Characterization

Russian author, Leo Tolstoy, is famous for his novels, among them, Anna Karenina . It is said that Tolstoy reaches

"unsurpassed perfection in the realistic art of the novel" with Anna Karenina .

In the novel Anna Karenina , Tolstoy leads the reader through Anna Arkadyevna Karenin's life and all the people who

surround her. The reader follows Anna as she sorts out a fight between her brother Stepan and his wife Dolly. Next the reader

finds themselves trailing Anna as she dances away from a Moscow ball with Count Vronsky's heart. The path this novel takes

then forks as the reader begins to follow Levin and his pursuit of the young and beautiful Kitty who was once a friend of

Anna's before Vronsky. The story bounces back and forth between these two characters as Anna plunges into an affair with

Vronsky that produces an illegitimate child, and Levin marries his true love Kitty. Anna then finds herself in a divorce

resulting from her affair while Levin and Kitty are expecting their first child. The reader follows Anna and Levin through

marriage, divorce, childbirth, death, heartbreak and utter happiness. In the novel Anna Karenina , the narrator gives the

reader a view of various characters true natures through indirect characterization.

At the beginning of the novel the reader is introduced to Stepan, Anna's brother, who has been caught having an affair with his

children's French governess.

Generally, human nature's first instinct is to despise a man with such poor morals. As the reader continues with the story, their

opinion of Stepan cannot help but change. Tolstoy's description of this character is of a man who does not mean to put his wife

through hardship, but of a man that has an extreme love of life. When Stepan is confronted by his wife Dolly, about his

infidelities, Tolstoy uses indirect characterization to show Stepan's true self. "Instead of...