Select your language

logo br en 1

A.M. Gorky Institute
of World Literature
of the Russian Academy of Sciences

IWL RAS Publishing

A.M. Gorky Institute of World Literature
of the Russian Academy of Sciences


Povarskaya 25a, 121069 Moscow, Russia



Types of publications

  • Classification – name: Literary studies
  • Author: Natalia I. Gorodilova (Romanova)
  • Pages: 323–344
  • Publisher: A.M. Gorky Institute of World Literature of the Russian Academy of Sciences (IWL RAS Publ.)
  • Rights – description: Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivatives 4.0 (СС BY-ND)
  • Rights – URL: Visit Website
  • Language of the publication: Russian
  • Type of document: Monograph
  • Collection: L.N. Tolstoy: Moral Search and Creative Laboratory
  • DOI:
  • Year of publication: 2021
  • Place of publication: Moscow
  • PDF

  • Gorodilova, N.I. “L.N. Tolstoy’s Novel ‘Anna Karenina’ in Russian Criticism: Typology of Positive Reviews (1875).” L.N. Tolstoy: Moral Search and Creative Laboratory. Moscow, IWL RAS Publ., pp. 323–344. (In Russ.)

About the author:


The article is devoted to the interpretation of the novel “Anna Karenina” in periodicals contemporary for the author. The appeal to critical articles of 1875, in which Tolstoy’s novel received a positive assessment, is motivated by the poor degree of their study. For the first time, materials from such publications as “Novosti”, “Remeslennaya Gazeta”, “Astrakhansky Spravochny Listok” and others are introduced into scientific circulation. The originality of the critical position of each reviewer is revealed, contradictions are noted in their judgments concerning the author’s intention, composition, system of images, narrative drawing. In the scientific tradition, there is a strong opinion that positive reviews are not of interest, since they contain only compliments to the writer without a serious analytical beginning. However, on one hand, among the reviewers who rated the novel positively, there was no consensus regarding the author’s intention. On the other hand, positive critical articles are a part of numerous judgments on the novel, expressed both in print on pages of periodicals and in personal documents (letters, diaries), therefore, they fit into the context of journal and newspaper polemics and are considered in the light of the reflection of typical judgments on the novel. In positive reviews, there are often direct or indirect references to the statements of critics who expressed a different point of view on the novel. The noticeable commonality of perception between ideological opponents convincingly proves that a positive reading of the novel did not yet testify to an understanding of the artistic idea of “Anna Karenina”.

  • Keywords: L.N. Tolstoy, criticism, novel, polemic, interpretation, periodicals, creative history, reception, review.


Find book in the current section