Fathers and Sons: Chapter 14,15,16

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Chapter 14: Summary


At the ball, Arkady dances with Odintsova, and he is “struck by the dignity of her bearing” (70). But she treats Arkady as if he were her brother. Still Arkady is taken with her.  Bazarov also is taken with her but for different reasons, which Arkady finds disrespectful. Bazarov did not dance at all at the ball.


Chapter 14: Analysis


At the ball, Arkady falls passionately in love with Odintsova, and we see his still immaturity. He also goes on and on about Bazarov, building him up in her eyes, to his own detriment. Arkady is irritated with Bazarov’s comments about the lady Odinstsova’s “pair of shoulders” (73).


Chapter 15: Summary


Bazarov and Arkady go visit Odintsova in her hotel room. Her first name is Anna. Her dead husband left her a fortune. Bazarov makes a bad first impression on Anna. But she invites them to come and visit her in her home. They leave the next day for her mansion.


Chapter 15: Analysis


From the start of their visit to Anna’s hotel room, Arkady notices things about Bazarov that disappoint him. Bazarov is “awkward,” and as Bazarov himself became aware of his awkwardness, he became agitated (74). Arkady speaks to Bazarov under his breath, so Bazarov cannot hear him, and the reader is aware of Arkady’s developing dislike for his friend.


Tergenov gives much exposition for Anna. We can assume that she will play a vital role in future chapters. She is rich, a widow, a “free spirit and quite strong minded” (76).  Yet Bazarov seems only interested in her on a physical level. Arkady is attracted to her.


Chapters 16: Summary


Bazarov and Arkady have a long visit with Anna and her aunt, her younger sister, and a neighbor who comes over to play cards. Arkady’s mother and Anna’s mother had known one another, so Arkady enjoys talking about his mother with Anna.


Bazarov and Anna talk together for a long time. Arkady listens to Katya (Anna’s sister) play the piano while the rest play cards.


The next day, Bazarov and Anna spend the entire day together on a walk. Arkady spends time with Katya.


Chapter 16: Analysis


The novel is all about relationships and how people deal with feelings about themselves, about the world, and about one another. The reader begins to see that Anna and Bazarov are very much alike. Anna has “no prejudices,” “no real beliefs,” and she moves in no particular direction (85). She is not completely satisfied and probably does not want to be completely satisfied, much like the ambiguity that surrounds Bazarov’s character. As the author so well puts it, “rainbow colours sometimes flashed before her eyes, but when they faded she was relieved and didn’t regret them” (86).


Turgenev gives an in-depth exposition on Anna’s character in this chapter, and we can see how much she resembles Bazarov through their personalities and beliefs. Neither of them have been in love, and they are attracted to one another as soon as they meet. Arkady spends time listening to Katya play the piano when he really wants to be with Odintsova. Bazarov and Odintsova have a long talk, and then he plays cards with her and a visiting neighbor. Bazarov is his old self: chastising and sarcastic. He and Arkady discuss the ladies, and Bazarov’s crude remark about Katya makes Arkady very uncomfortable (85). Anna is curious about Bazarov, and we can assume here that this is a foreshadowing of a future relationship between them.

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