Monday, July 12, 2010

"Every individual existence revolves around mystery..."

I've been very lax about my daily reading of short stories this summer, but I'm going to try to be better during the second half of my summer vacation. I can't believe it's already half over! I'm feeling the need to get things done for the next four weeks, things that I had planned to do this summer. One of those things was to read a short story every day and tweet/blog about it.

This morning I read Anton Chekhov's "The Lady with the Dog." I'm not sure if I've ever read any of Chekhov's stories or plays before. In addition to being a constant reader, I majored in English as an undergrad and almost completed a masters in literature, so you would think that I had read something of his, but I can't remember ever doing so. My point is I've never studied Chekhov. I have read other Russian writers, and I thought this story pretty typical of nineteenth century Russian literature. (Please, correct me if I'm wrong.)

I enjoyed reading this story, but I wasn't surprised by its outcome. I did, however, find a statement in it that I really liked. Gurov, the main character, is a philanderer, and at one point he thinks "every individual existence revolves around mystery..." I think that a lot of people might disagree with this statement, or at least might be upset by the thought of it as a reality. However, I'm not sure if anyone can ever really know everything about another individual. We all have secrets of some kind, right? Some people like to claim that what you see is what you get, but I'm not sure that is even possible. Don't we all live a persona that we've created whether consciously or unconsciously? What do you think?

I'm going to ponder on this for a while and maybe I'll write more about it later. For now, I need to get some other things done. Later.

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