Daily Archives: March 6, 2016

59% done with War and Peace


Here Tolstoy is trying to show us that Napoleon is just a man like any other man and that this man is not in control of everything – in this case his cold and the time on his watch till the battle starts. And Tolstoy is right, Napoleon was just a man like any other and no man should be worshiped like a God. But to diminish the power men like Napoleon have over people is to allow them to gain power again.

59% done with War and Peace


Tolstoy’s thesis breaks down because men will do nothing without leadership. Tolstoy is being a pedant when he says Napoleon shot nobody at Borodino. Napoleon may not have fired a shot, but no shots would have been fired without him. To go further, Christian’s would have no leadership without Christ. Christ does not make man sin or not sin. The same is true of all leaders. I get his point, but don’t buy all

58% done with War and Peace


I think there is a contradiction that Tolstoy fails to see in his observation. He claims that the turn of a battle can rest with one man who says “Hurrah” rather than “We’re lost!”, but can’t the same be said for the turn of an army? A Nation? The fact that the French had marched all that way victoriously, while not exclusively Napoleon’s doing, is in large-part his doing.

58% done with War and Peace


Tolstoy wrote this novel about 50 years after the events that take place in the novel: a full half-century. This along with the notion that the study of history was a far more inexact art as it is now (which is still mighty inexact) I can’t help but question how he thinks he knows what really happened. Yes, Napoleon is not nearly as responsible for winning as we would think, but I don’t go as far as Tolstoy

58% done with War and Peace


More vanity from Napoleon.

We see how tenuous and idiotic royal heredity is with this painting of the boy King of Rome playing at stick and ball with the celestial globe. We also see how dangerous it is to think you can actually conquer the world.

This scene is repeated in another masterpiece, Chaplin’s ‘The Great Dictator’ in the playing with the globe scene. Vain, cruel, egotistic: so-called ‘great men’

58% done with War and Peace


Andrei is what we become when we can’t forgive. His cynicism is modern, his view on war in its totality is modern (take no prisoners, kill everyone).

War is the expression of hate we can’t express any other way just as poetic feeling can’t be expressed even with the most beautiful poetry (this is why he remembers Natasha’s story she didn’t feel she could tell right).