Tolstoy developed his novel along the modernist realm by displacing a clear protagonist. Instead, there are dual protagonists in the form of Anna and Levin. They serve as comparisons and contrasts. Levin blooms from being a realist, into a modernist. He is a modernist who understands the problems of his society. Tolstoy includes this conversation exchange between the two brothers, Levin and Sergey, to show the modernist trends of being concerned over the political and social developments of the country; ‘ "Do you know I've been thinking about you, " said Sergey Ivanovitch.
"It's beyond everything that's being done in the district, according to what this doctor tells me. He's a very intelligent fellow. And as I've told you before, I tell you again: it's not right for you not to go to the meetings, and altogether to keep out of the district business. If decent people won't go into it, of course, it's bound to go all wrong. We pay the money, and it all goes in salaries, and there are no schools, nor district nurses, nor midwives, nor drugstores-- nothing. " Levin reveals his earnest modernism when he affirms; ‘ "Well, I did try, you know, " Levin said slowly and unwillingly.
"I can't! and so there's no help for it. " ‘ It is noted the persistent trends of modernism is repeated in the overlapping voices of the different characters. Levin is everything in contrast with Anna. He is the symbol of peace and goodness coming from rural purity. Anna represents the decadence from urban waste. The love lives of Levin and Anna are parallels that contrast. Tolstoy incorporated dual sets of love relationships to illustrate what happens with the different sets of couples.
In Part One, Chapter Thirty-Three, Alexey Alexandrovitch Karenin is introduced as a socially correct, important man who takes pride in doing everything right. Tolstoy develops his character to reveal chinks in the armor of hypocrisy and artificiality. He uses Anna to cast the initial doubt over Karenin.
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