Anton Tchekhov

T.J. Elward
4th Hour World Lit
Mr. Corcoran
1/7/99

The Cherry Orchard
by: Anton Tchekhov

Information About the Author

Anton Tchekhov is one of the few big time authors who not only wrote but also practiced medicine. By using his compassionate and objective skills as that of a doctor his works became famous. He was able then to establish himself as one of the great figures in Russian Realism.

Anton was the son of a serf who had bought his freedom. He was born in a small town called Taganrog in Southern Russia. After his fathers attempt at a grocery business failing, the family let to go to Moscow, while Anton remained in Taganrog to complete his schooling. In 1879 he moved to Moscow for an attempt at achieving a medical degree. While in Med. school he drew comics and began to compose short stories. This helped him by earning him money to support his own needs and those of the family. Once he achieved his goal and graduated from Medical school in 1884 he published his first compilation of stores entitled, Tales of Melpomeme. In the same year he also experienced his first symptoms of tuberculosis.

Although Anton was accepted into getting a position at a hospital on the outskirts of Moscow, he instead began to spend all of his energy towards his writing and started a very substantial literary reputation. Although he never completely stopped using some sort of humor, his stories now began to become more serious and complex due to the current time in Russia. In fact many of the stories he created in the later 1880\'s were highly insightful and penetrating studies of a person\'s inner thoughts. Anton also shows his profound understanding of human nature in the first play he wrote which is given the name, Ivanov.

In 1890 Anton Tchekhov embarked on a long , rough, and taxing journey across Siberia to the island of Sakhalin. This was the cite of a Russian penal colony. There he conducted many sociological experiments on the effects of prison life on people , and later publishing his findings in The Island of Sakhalin, which was released in 1894. This book had brought about some minor reforms in the Russian penal system. After returning home, he bought an estate in Melikhovo, a village about fifty miles south of Moscow. While he lived here he cared for his elderly parents, offered medical attention to his fellow villagers, working with community affairs , and still managed to continue writing his ground breaking stories throughout the 6 years he lived in Melikhovo.

Toward the end of the nineteenth century, Anton\'s physical condition began to rapidly whither away. No longer able to withstand the cold climate of Melikhovo, Anton moved to a coastal resort on the Black Sea called , Yalta. His ill health did not impair his writing skills however because in the final years he produced his two critically acclaimed plays, The Sisters and The Cherry Orchard.


Setting

The setting for this story is believe to take place in the later part of the nineteenth century. It takes place on Madame Ranevsky\'s property in a small village. The current season is May and the cherry trees are in blossom. Yet it is still cold in the garden because of morning frost.


Characterization

Through the course of this book you are introduced to many different characters. Madame Ranevsky is the land over to this estate and doesn\'t want to sell it no matter the cost. Anya he daughter is that of age 17. Barbara is her adopted daughter who is 26 and does not want her daughter Anya to fall in love with Peter Trophimof. Leonid Gayef is the brother of Madame Ranevsky. Lopakin is a merchant, he enforces selling the house and land to set up villa\'s and rent them to people. Peter Trophimof is a student who is in love with Anya. Simeonof-Pishthik is a land owner in Russia. Charlotte is a governess who is known for conjuring up magic tricks. Dunyasha is the house maid to Madame. Firs is an old man-servant to the Madame of age 87. Yasha on the other hand is a young man servant to Madame. Also through out the story you meet characters with little to no real part in