Part 3, Chapter 12 Summary
When the last load of hay is finally loaded by Ivan Parmenov and his lovely wife, the couple walks the cart to the barn. Around them other men and women work merrily, and the sound of so many women in a “thunder of merriment” soon envelops Levin. He envies their health and happiness and longs to take part in their joy of living. Instead, he is helpless to do anything but watch and listen. When all the peasants finally leave for a time, Levin is left feeling an abject alienation.
Some of those merry peasants had been involved in the arguing and wrangling over the hay, but they are evidently incapable of bearing any grudge and move forward in a sea of “merry common labor.” Levin has often admired their lives;...
(The entire section is 513 words.)