Today is Leo Tolstoy’s 186th birthday. I’ve always had an affinity for Russian filmmakers and writers, and Tolstoy is no different. He wrote exceptional pieces of realistic fiction that tackle issues which remain relevant today.
Tolstoy became accustomed to loss and death early in his life. He lost his mother when he was two, his father when he was nine, and his aunt (who had subsequently cared for him and his siblings) a few years later. Despite this, Tolstoy remembered his childhood fondly as reflected in his writings.1
In 1844 Tolstoy began studying law and Asian languages at the University of Kazan. Tolstoy performed less than adequately and eventually dropped out to pursue a career in farming on his parents’ estate. He also struggled with this and his brother, Nikolai, convinced him to join the army. During this time, he began to write and kept a journal.
Tolstoy’s army experience left a profound impact on him and it was the beginning catalyst that prompted his shift to a non-violent Christian anarchist.… Read the rest