The Power of Darkness. A Drama in Five Acts - Leo Tolstoy - ebook

The Power of Darkness. A Drama in Five Acts ebook

Leo Tolstoy

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The very concept of „The Power of Darkness” for Tolstoy corresponds to the Gospel, where darkness is identified with the concept of hell and death, and light with hope and paradise. The Power of Darkness expresses not only religious, but also philosophical ideas of the great Russian writer. Darkness is the moral blindness of people who commit a crime in order to satisfy the most base motives. The power of „The Power of Darkness” for Tolstoy is the tragedy of hopelessness, a heavy chain of sins that entangle a person. But „The Power of Darkness” is also the path to moral regeneration through repentance.

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Liczba stron: 143

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Contents

CHARACTERS

ACT I

ACT II

ACT III

ACT IV

VARIATION

ACT V

CHARACTERS

PETER IGNÁTITCH. A well-to-do peasant, 42 years old, married for the second time, and sickly.

ANÍSYA. His wife, 32 years old, fond of dress.

AKOULÍNA. Peter’s daughter by his first marriage, 16 years old, hard of hearing, mentally undeveloped.

NAN (ANNA PETRÓVNA). His daughter by his second marriage, 10 years old.

NIKÍTA. Their labourer, 26 years old, fond of dress.

AKÍM. Nikíta’s father, 50 years old, a plain-looking, God-fearing peasant.

MATRYÓNA. His wife and Nikíta’s mother, 50 years old.

MARÍNA. An orphan girl, 22 years old.

MARTHA. Peter’s sister.

MÍTRITCH. An old labourer, ex-soldier.

SIMON. Marína’s husband.

BRIDEGROOM. Engaged to Akoulína.

IVÁN. His father.

A NEIGHBOUR.

FIRST GIRL.

SECOND GIRL.

POLICE OFFICER.

DRIVER.

BEST-MAN.

MATCHMAKER.

VILLAGE ELDER.

VISITORS, WOMEN, GIRLS, AND PEOPLE come to see the wedding.

N.B.–The “oven’ mentioned is the usual large, brick, Russian baking-oven. The top of it outside is flat, so that more than one person can lie on it.

THE POWER OF DARKNESS

ACT I

The Act takes place in autumn in a large village. The Scene represents Peter’s roomy hut. Peter is sitting on a wooden bench, mending a horse-collar. Anísya and Akoulína are spinning, and singing a part-song.

PETER [looking out of the window] The horses have got loose again. If we don’t look out they’ll be killing the colt. Nikíta! Hey, Nikíta! Is the fellow deaf? [Listens. To the women] Shut up, one can’t hear anything.

NIKÍTA [from outside] What?

PETER. Drive the horses in.

NIKÍTA. We’ll drive ’em in. All in good time.

PETER [shaking his head] Ah, these labourers! If I were well, I’d not keep one on no account. There’s nothing but bother with ’em. [Rises and sits down again] Nikíta!... It’s no good shouting. One of you’d better go. Go, Akoúl, drive ’em in.

AKOULÍNA. What? The horses?

PETER. What else?

AKOULÍNA. All right. [Exit].

PETER. Ah, but he’s a loafer, that lad... no good at all. Won’t stir a finger if he can help it.

ANÍSYA. You’re so mighty brisk yourself. When you’re not sprawling on the top of the oven you’re squatting on the bench. To goad others to work is all you’re fit for.

PETER. If one weren’t to goad you on a bit, one’d have no roof left over one’s head before the year’s out. Oh what people!

ANÍSYA. You go shoving a dozen jobs on to one’s shoulders, and then do nothing but scold. It’s easy to lie on the oven and give orders.

PETER [sighing] Oh, if ‘twere not for this sickness that’s got hold of me, I’d not keep him on another day.

AKOULÍNA [off the scene] Gee up, gee, woo. [A colt neighs, the stamping of horses’ feet and the creaking of the gate are heard].

PETER. Bragging, that’s what he’s good at. I’d like to sack him, I would indeed.

ANÍSYA [mimicking him] “Like to sack him.” You buckle to yourself, and then talk.

AKOULÍNA [enters] It’s all I could do to drive ’em in. That piebald always will...

PETER. And where’s Nikíta?

This is a free sample. Please purchase full version of the book to continue.

This is a free sample. Please purchase full version of the book to continue.

This is a free sample. Please purchase full version of the book to continue.

This is a free sample. Please purchase full version of the book to continue.

This is a free sample. Please purchase full version of the book to continue.

This is a free sample. Please purchase full version of the book to continue.

This is a free sample. Please purchase full version of the book to continue.