Analysis Pages

Plot in Fathers and Sons

Plot Examples in Fathers and Sons:

Chapter I

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"but spent the greater part of his time in endeavouring to fraternise with his son's youthful acquaintances..."   (Chapter I)

We see here at Nikolai Petrovich not only stayed in St. Petersburg to educate himself but also spent the majority of his time in the company of his son and his son’s friends. This shows the closeness between father and son, and it also sets up the tension between them since his son is returning from his last year in the capital—which he didn’t spend with his father. They haven’t seen each other in quite some time and much may have changed.

"the reader may care to become better acquainted with his personality..."   (Chapter I)

Turgenev, as the narrator, inserts his own voice into this passage. This creates a less formal, almost storytelling aspect to the tale by showing readers that important information will be given at appropriate times to maintain interest and fully flesh out characters.

"Whither his thoughts were wandering God only knows..."   (Chapter IV)

Turgenev’s narrator does not provide us with the inner thoughts of Paul Petrovich in this passage. We’ve previously been allowed access into the thoughts of Arkady, so it is a little unclear why the narrator is not consistent with his point of view here, beyond a simple tactic to try and create a sense of anxiety or apprehension to fuel the plot.

"Inclining his supple figure with a faint smile, Paul Petrovitch this time did not offer his hand...."   (Chapter IV)

In this gesture, we encounter the first suggestion of Paul’s distaste for Bazarov. Rather than shaking hands with Bazarov, Paul smiles condescendingly and raises his finger. Paul’s poor opinion of Bazarov proves to be an important source of conflict throughout the novel.

Analysis Pages