Barely a Book Club

Teetering on the edge of a normal book club

8/19/06 – Barely a Fight Club? August 17, 2006

Filed under: Anna Karenina — antof9 @ 3:04 am

Well if you didn’t come last week (which was most everyone) you totally missed Sam and Joel yelling at me for an hour. You even missed Sam running out and buying a dictionary to prove me “wrong” (which he never used.)

Only topic last week
– Was Karenin noble in his decision to let Anna decide whether to divorce or not?

Let’s meet at Aviano’s at 10:30. Read to Part 7.

Noble – Having or showing qualities of high moral character, such as courage, generosity, or honor

Courage – The state or quality of mind or spirit that enables one to face danger, fear,or
vicissitudes with self-possession, confidence, and resolution; bravery.

Generosity – Liberality in giving or willingness to give  

Honor – Good name; reputation.


2 Responses to “8/19/06 – Barely a Fight Club?”

  1. theprof Says:

    good definitions. i guess you don’t need to use my dictionary. i couldn’t find a good definition for manliness, but the one for machismo should suffice:
    “A strong or exaggerated sense of masculinity stressing attributes such as physical courage, virility, domination of women, and aggressiveness.”
    I get the feeling that this definition would apply to most of the men typified by Vronsky, who desire to have a duel to prove the worthiness of their love. Whereas Karenin although wimpy would obviously not engage in a duel. This is the crux of the matter. If you act in a way that is consistent with wimps can you still be considered noble for not acting overly aggressive?

  2. Inspector Love Says:

    I haven’t read the book in a while, so I may be way off base, but the above comments sparked some thoughts…

    First, Karenin allowed Anna to make the decision, which gave Anna more independence and freedom than was acceptable in society at the time (generosity). He went against society so Anna could be empowered to make the best decision for her. It took some courage because it’s a major risk- she could NOT choose him, which means he faces the shame of his wife leaving him. He took a big risk and lost. If you judge him by the society of his time, he probably was not considered honorable because he didn’t fight for his wife. Yet, I think you could argue, overall, that he was noble.

    Second, in life, you have to fight for what you believe in IMHO… if Karenin wanted to keep Anna, he probably needed to at least attempt to fight for her. She was obviously attracted to the machismo of another man. So, the question for Karenin boils down to: does he change himself or go beyond what he feels comfortable doing in order to keep Anna, or does he remain true to himself and risk letting her go.

    Just some thoughts, but I’m a bit rusty on this book- it’s been 10 years since I read it.

    By the by… the novel takes a big turn after this and you may see a change in how you view the characters. Can’t wait to meet the group (soon, I promise).

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