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News

Family Motives in Epic Novel "And Quiet Flows the Don"

08.07.2020

The family plays a very important role in the life of every person. After all, these are not only people who love us, protect and support us, but also it also a place where we are always welcome. Family is the strongest bond in our entire life. The family topic is central in the works of the great writer Mikhail Sholokhov. 

The history of the Melekhov family is one of the main plot lines of the novel. This family was a close-knit little world of kindred people with their own special feelings, experiences, destinies: “... the work went on side by side, together they shared both joy and sorrow, and a great long-term coherence was felt throughout life. There was a tightly knit family ...”.

The fierce battles of the civil war gradually destroyed the Melekhov family. “The family was falling apart in front of Panteley Prokofievich. He was left alone with the old woman. Suddenly and quickly, family ties were destroyed, the warmth of the relationship was lost, in conversations more and more often notes of irritability and alienation slipped ... They sat at the common table not as before - as a united and friendly family, but as people who had accidentally gathered together.

Even the experience of the death of loved ones did not contribute to the rapprochement of the fragments of the once large and friendly family. Ilyinichna's quarrel with her daughter over the "murderer" Mishka, and later Grigory's irreconcilable conflict with him are the last links in the chain of destruction. The way of life of the Cossack family collapsed, based on respect for elders, on reverence for the mother.

In the Melekhov family, they tried to keep the faith to the end. Even during the years of the civil war, when many family foundations wavered, the Melekhovs did not abandon the Orthodox tradition: "After praying, the whole family sat down at the table."

It is noteworthy that Dunyashka is the only one of the Melekhovs to maintain an attitude towards the family as a sacred union: her insistence on the wedding issue will break the iron stubbornness of the red atheist Koshevoy. A mother's blessing and church ceremony will sanctify this strange union of opposites.

By Sholokhov, the civil war destroyed human nests to the ground. Nevertheless, many researchers interpret the ending of the novel as optimistic: "The symbolic figurine of a child in the father's arms indicates that life goes on."

 

Marina Debur