Reading for Tuesday, 17 February
And here we zoom out again for the big picture of everybody leaving Moscow. In probably the first time that Tolstoy has taken his philosophy from out of the battlefield context, he shows us that the leaving of Moscow by everyone was inevitable as well (despite what the single individual, Rastopchin, would try to do to the contrary).
One person started leaving, somebody else did as well, and the fervour spread to the crowd. And it was that crowd that was going to determine what happened, not what Rastopchin did.
Granted, it does all sound a bit crazy, and things have certainly escalated from the time when everyone was doing their best to think about anything besides the impending invasion.
And certainly, there’s nothing more diverting from the invasion than the events of the next chapter . . .