Well, here’s a surprise that I never expected. I can’t believe that I don’t remember this from the last time I remembered the novel. (Dont’ believe anything that anyone says about speed reading – you miss heaps of details!)

Here’s Denisov and Dolohov, teaming up as guerilla fighters to whup the French! Out of the woodwork have come thousands of French peasants, all dedicated to bashing the French. I know Tolstoy’s not in favour of war, but do I detect a certain note of glee in his descriptions of how all this works?

Because it does kind of prove the point that if you get a whole nation behind you (not just an army), you can be pretty powerful.


2 thoughts on “One-Year War and Peace 14.3 – Dolohov Returns

  1. I’m sure you’re right, Matt, in detecting a bit of glee in Tolstoy’s description of the partisan war here … and I have to admit that I was even a little shocked at how casually he mentioned all the French that were killed. I, too had forgotten that Dolokhov turns up in this scene – but as soon as I read it today, I remember having thought at the time, when I read it last, how appropriate it was that Dolokhov, the eternal rebel, should be involved in this.

    And I think what we see here, if not Tolstoy’s pacifism, at least some real signs of his anarchism – it’s the people acting without rules who, in this chapter, are the ones who really get things done.

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