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Synopsis

"The Death of Ivan Ilyich and Other Stories" is a collection of short stories that includes "The Invaders" (or "The Raid"),"The Wood-Cutting Expedition," "Three Deaths," "Polikushka," "The Death of Ivan Ilyich," "After the Ball," and "The Forged Coupon." The most famous and superbly written of these is "The Death of Ivan Ilyich," which Tolstoy wrote later in his life. It tells a tale revolving around a man in his 40s who has spent his entire life climbing the social ladder in Russia. Barely tolerant of his wife and generally indifferent to the other people around him, Ivan has a minor accident hanging curtains in a new apartment that proves to be a terminal injury. As his life slowly and painfully spirals inexorably toward death, Ivan struggles immensely against what he perceives to be an unfair fate. Only in the end does he see how he might have lived differently and authentically. In this and the other short stories by Tolstoy, the themes of loss and death are deeply explored and developed by a brilliant and immortalized writer.

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