40% done with War and Peace

Tolstoy continuously sets up one situation and then almost immediately contrasts it with its opposite. Once Andrey realizes that Natasha has rejuvenated him and now wants to live life to the fullest, we get the chapter of Berg and the party and the great line “Everything was just as it was everywhere else”.

Tolstoy clearly sees the shallow, fake, pointless existence of striving towards suburban mediocrity.