What conflicts does Gurov face in "The Lady with the Pet Dog" and how does Chekhov present or portray these conflicts? Also, talk about how these conflicts change throughout the story.
Dmitri Dmitrich Gurov and Anna Sergeyevna, both parted from their significant others, find each other in their times of loneliness and eventually fall in love with one another. In "The Lady with the Pet Dog," Anton Chekhov portrays a strong theme of love, but he also presents a conflict within the characters themselves. The main character, Gurov, is faced with a number of conflicts within himself and Chekhov does a great job in making it obvious for the reader to isolate. Anton Chekhov begins the story with a description of Dmitri Gurov's home life. Chekhov writes, "and though he secretly considered her shallow, narrow-minded, and dowdy, he stood in awe of her, and disliked being at home. He had begun deceiving her long ago and he was now constantly unfaithful to her." This passage portrays Gurov's unhappiness with his life. He had been pressured into marrying his wife in only his third year of college and now was suffering the consequences of making a life-long commitment too early. This dissatisfaction, therefore, leads him to cheat on his wife. Constantly being unfaithful meant that he had to live a secret life, one of which nobody but himself knew of. "He led a double life---one in public, in the sight of all whom it concerned, full of conventional deception, exactly like the lives of his friends and acquaintances, and another which flowed in secret." This secret life gave Gurov a sense of fulfillment and overcame any unhappiness he felt in his surface life. It gave Gurov a chance to feel as if his life wasn't a full mistake and let him live the life that he had always wanted to live. "The utter idleness, these kisses in broad daylight, accompanied by furtive glances and the fear of discovery, the heat, the smell of the sea, and the idle, smart, well-fed...
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