Count Leo Nikolaevich Tolstoy (1828-1910) is one of the most important writers in the Western tradition. His two great, giant novels, War and Peace and Anna Karenina, are regarded as pinnacles of the genre; they cover an enormous range of basic human experiences with a precision and probing spirit that, in the words of one critic, are simply unmatched by any other writer. This guide offers students a clear introduction to Tolstoys literary works from his major novels to the shorter novels and texts, including Hadji Murat and The Death of Ivan Ilyich. The guide also covers major themes including sex, death, authority and evil and offers an overview of Tolstoy's religious and philosophical thought. A final chapter assesses his lasting influence in the spheres of literature and culture, religion and philosophy and on major figures including Joyce, Ghandi, Wittgenstein and Heidegger. This is a comprehensive and readable guide to one of the most remarkable writers and thinkers of the nineteenth century.

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