And here, as we get closer to the action that’s coming up, we meet the crazy peasant guerrilla, Tihon. (Well, okay, he’s not crazy – he’s just fearless.)

I’m almost sorry he didn’t get introduced earlier in the novel – I think he would be great fun. Certainly, if they were making a movie of War and Peace nowadays to appeal to the current generation of movie goers, there’s nothing quite like a fearless peasant armed with a musket and an ax, as a good “sidekick” character to cheer in the action scenes.

Of course, this feels like another bizarre stage of the whole war. We went through the formal battle years, then the destruction of Moscow, and now this snapshot of life among the guerrillas. It’s like reading about the Vietnam war, compared with, say, the American Civil War. A far different type of warfare . . . and it breeds different characters.

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2 thoughts on “One-Year War and Peace 14.5 – A New Character

  1. I had actually forgotten quite a bit of this coverage of the partisan war from my first reading of War and Peace – but now it just seems to make so much sense that Tolstoy would be honing in on it, and on characters like Tikhon, in this way … driving home his point that it is the cogs that ultimately go to make the wheel what it is.

    I’m not sure how much this rank-and-file war really did come into its own towards the end of 1812 – but it certainly fits perfectly here as far as Tolstoy’s telling of the story goes – after so much focus on the big picture, and on the endless posturings of the people who think themselves to be the movers and shakers, the power of these peasants trudging in the mud becomes all the more remarkable.

  2. Maybe throw the ‘Incredible Hunk’ in. Or one of those big wrestlers from the Saturday afternoon fights.

    How about one of those big zany amazon-type women!

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