Nihilism In Fathers And Sons

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The novel Fathers & Sons is written by Ivan Turgenev in 1862. This novel is known to be a breakout novel for Russian literature as a whole. The novel sends controversial messages through its writing, presenting nihilism through its main character. Apart from this the novel displays the opposition between science and love. The importance of science lessens as the novel continues on. This may be due to an increase in importance of love. Bazarov, the main symbolism of science and of nihilism in the novel, falls for Odinsteva. The pecking order established between Bazarov and Arkady was established firmly and evident until the feeling of love gets in the way, giving love a power that science is not capable of inducing. Another reason apart from…show more content…
Before they met, Bazarov has been told she is intelligent. Their encounter made it clear that it was otherwise. As soon as they were introduced, Kukshina made it desperate to prove herself to be intellectual, in an almost childish tone. Turgenev does not just show this by her tone, he even points it out by writing “Madame Kukshina shed her questions one after another with affected negligence, not waiting for an answer; spoilt children talk so to their nurses.” He has added this part in to allow all readers to apprehend her idiocy. Her purpose in science, “To make dolls' heads so that they shouldn't break”, is there to expose the ineptness in science. “I'm practical, too, you see.” She adds in what she thinks is a convincing tone. With every word she says, she lowers the readers’ opinions thoughts towards science, as the readers easily recognize her as a fool. The end of this high praise for science really is when Bazarov questions her reason behind wanting to move to Heidelberg, and she responds saying, “How can you ask? Why, Bunsen's there!” She believes that by living in a city, in which the creator of the Bunsen burner lives, it will make her more of a scientist and this comes as a shock. Bazarov, who usually always has something to critique about, had no response to this woman who is a disgrace to all scientist. In a few pages she damages the name of science, and…show more content…
He put himself above everyone, having extremely high confidence and believing that he was better than everyone else. His high self-confidence gives him his fuel to work extremely hard. And it was his passion in science that went along with his self-confidence that gave his character a sense of supremacy. However all this began to change as Odinsteva was introduced. Bazarov believed her to be only a pretty woman. 'What a magnificent body!' pursued Bazarov. 'Shouldn't I like to see it on the dissecting-table.' What Bazarov said shows that he didn’t even consider her a woman, just a body. However when he began speaking to her, he began acting in a way that is unusual to his usual self. Arkady noticed this immediately as its noted “He, contrary to his habit, was talking a good deal, and obviously trying to interest her—again a surprise for Arkady.“ Perhaps it was the independence in her character that made Bazarov feel the need to impress her. In spite of himself, he slowly begins to fall in love with her, and felt lots of emotion while he was with her, Turgenev described his feelings as“ the foreboding of love”. But he resented these feelings as he felt, “As though he were possessed by some secret longing” and “His blood was on fire directly if he merely thought of her” For the first time, he playing the game of love, and he was losing. This is evident and also
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