The Death of Ivan Ilyich

Topics: Sociology, Middle class, Social class Pages: 1 (323 words) Published: November 17, 2008
The Death of Ivan Ilyich
Throughout Ivan’s entire life all he seemed to live for were his material possessions and his status within the world he lived. Regardless of what life he had before his very eyes, he went about trying to live a life that didn’t belong to him. Because of this, He always blamed his wife for not being good to him, when in reality he was the one that was not truly being good to himself. He always seemed to go for what would impress the social order, rather than what would lead him to happiness. If Ivan would have gone with his own feelings in the first place, he probably would not have become a lawyer, and would not have ended up in the stressful job he had to deal with now. Actually this job by itself may have been the cause of his distressed life as a whole. Throughout the entire story I noticed Ivan was trying to lead two different lives at the same time. Ivan is simply the same as any other average person in the middle class. Although, Ivan convinces himself that he is in the upper class of the social order. It seems as if Ivan only works so that he might become higher in society and attain a higher salary, not because he wants to secure the well being of his family. Because of this lack of admittance of his social status, this might have made him a bad family man and a worse lawyer. If he had only admitted that there is no way to separate the two of his “lives,” he could have worked out a much better system, and not been between the two. It seems as if Tolstoy’s point, to his audience, was to live a good life not lying to yourself, and most importantly live your own life, not a life of another person.
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