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Analysis and Interpretation of God Sees the Truth, But Waits by Tolstoi

Analysis and Interpretation of God Sees the Truth, But Waits by Tolstoi

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Published by Gabby Gagno
This is a juvenile structural analysis on the short story "God Sees the Truth, but Waits" by Leo Tolstoy
This is a juvenile structural analysis on the short story "God Sees the Truth, but Waits" by Leo Tolstoy

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Published by: Gabby Gagno on Nov 26, 2009
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10/21/2013

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Social Injustice due to Ignorance
 A juvenile structural analysis on Tolstoy’s “God Sees the Truth, but Waits” 
 
 
Social Injustice due to Ignorance
A juvenile 
structural analysis on Tolstoy’s “God Sees the Truth, but Waits” 
 
Leo Tolstoy, the best known writer from Russia, had written a great deal of novels andstories, including the famous
War and Peace 
and
Anna Karenina 
. These novels hadbeen enjoyed through the generations and the world at large. However, in the latter part
of his life he became a radical Christian anarchist (that’s why he is one of the
cornerstones of anarchy) and rejected ownership to his works. He still wrote stories,though, and in
1872 he published ―God Sees the Truth, but Waits.‖ What mystery! Whywould he write when he is not a writer anymore? Let’s go find out.
 
Summary
The story started when Ivan Demitrich Aksionov, the rich merchant from the town (nowcity) of Vladimir, goes on a fair somewhere in Nizhny. His wife pleads him to just let theday pass and not go into the fair because of a nightmare that his hair was gray when hereturned home. Aksionov however, disregards the warning and proceeds.On the way he saw a merchant whom he knew well, though his name wasn
t mentionedby Tolstoy.
This merchant goes to the same fair Aksionov’s going, so they decided to
 join each other. They stayed in an inn at the night, but Aksionov woke the merchant upearly so that they may travel faster. However, the scene changes to him being alone,feeding the horses and playing his guitar. Suddenly, the police officers came to inspecthis things, telling him that the merchant he was with died and suggesting he was thekiller. They came to look for a knife, and they found one and it was even bloodied.He was tried and he also tried to make appeals to the Tsar, but it was continuouslytrashed down. He finally gave up and swore that only God knows the truth. He decidedto accept his sentence and was deported to the Russian penal colony at Siberia. Fortwenty-five years he lived there.Until one day, a new inmate came in. His name was Makar Semyonich, who lived in thesame town as Aksionov. Makar then recognized Aksionov as the one of the richest guys
 
in Vladimir.
He however eluded the murder case of Aksionov, making Aksionov think thatMakar is the criminal.
One day he caught Makar digging a tunnel underneath the jail. He then confessed whathe did: he killed the merchant that Aksionov was with, and that Aksionov is suffering forthe sin of Makar. Makar still warns Aksionov, though, that once he tell the authorities ofthe tunnel he will die. Aksiono remained silent the next day when he was interrogated.In the end, Makar confessed his sin of killing the merchant, and the authorities grantedAksionov a full pardon
 –
posthumously though, as he was dead already.
Analysis
The story was writt
en at the time when Tolstoy renounced the words ―literary‖ and―artistic‖ in
his vocabulary. That means that he has already denied his writing professionand continued to his spiritual life. He is of immense proportions once because of hiswritings, but now he is also well known because of his ideology of Christian anarchy. Henonetheless continued to write, and these later writings were more profound than that ofthe past.The character of Aksionov suddenly splits up in the middle: from being a businessmanto becoming a religious man. He almost abandoned his fame as the rich merchantbecause he accepted that his pleas were kind-of nonsense to the Tsar. He also is acharacter of an innocent man being suddenly destroyed by injustice and coincidence.The very mindboggling thing about this is that this story represents the life of Tolstoypretty much exactly. First, Tolstoy attained a state of social prominence in Russiabecause of his literary expertise. He carried his fame everywhere, and the novels
War and Peace 
and
Anna Karenina 
were attached to his name and were credited to hisexceptional skills in writing
the very same fame that Aksionov attained. Tolstoy,
however, read Arthur Schopenauer’s
The World and Will as Representation 
(a bookrejecting aesthetics, especially the Kantian ones) and became slowly converted to anascetic type of morality and slowly commenced the renunciation of all his works andeven his fame as a writer. This last sentence is the very same that happened to

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