“The word tomorrow was invented for indecisive people and for children...”
Ivan Turgenev gave his generation a literary legacy that dealt with the extraordinary moral complexities of his age.
A novel of haunting beauty, Rudin, his first, is a fascinating account of one of Turgenev's favorite themes: man's inability to act.
Rudin is an eloquent intellectual, Dmitry Rudin, nearing middle age, still unmarried, regarded by all who meet him as brilliant, yet who never has any great success in anything he does, due to—something. He has a chance at love, and turns it down due to practical considerations.
Rudin’s power of oratory and passionate belief in the need for progress so affect the younger members of his circle that the heroine, Natalya, falls in love with him. But when she challenges him to live up to his words, he fails her: he simply cannot summon the will to act decisively—for Rudin is nothing but a splendid, empty suit. Yes he has a fine mind filled with the decorations of art, music, philosophy, and prolonged thought; but he is paralyzed. He cannot act. He can only talk. And talk. And talk.
It is considered by many to be one of Turgenev's greatest novels.
IVAN TURGENEV (1818–1883) was a Russian novelist, short story writer, and playwright known for his honest portrayals of Russian serfs in the feudal system of the nineteenth century. Unlike his contemporaries Dostoyevsky and Tolstoy, whose writings focused primarily on church and religion, Turgenev believed in the need for Russia to Westernize. He criticized the provincial society and political turbulence of his time through sophisticated and passionate prose. His novel Fathers and Sons is regarded as one of the major works of 19th-century fiction. He also wrote such masterworks as The Diary of a Superfluous Man, First Love, Torrents of Spring, King Lear of the Steppes, Smoke, and A Sportsman’s Sketches.