I told her about our project, and since she interviews artists and writers -- she thought that the War and Peace Project would be a good fit. If I can figure out how to edit the interview -- leaving out other content which we got into -- I will upload it onto this blog. It was such a pleasure to talk to her about what we're doing.
We are now in Volume II, Part V, between chapters IV and V. Princess Marya is grilling Pierre about Natasha's character in chapter IV. Pierre is clearly in love with Natasha and doesn't want to criticize her, although he does tell Princess Marya she is "enchanting" but "she doesn't deign to be intelligent". Ouch! And in the next chapter, Boris is bride shopping and trying to decide between Julie, the wealthy heiress or Princess Marya who rebuffs his attempts to woo her.
This next line really caught my attention. A brutal time to be a woman!
"A man who, ten years before, would have been afraid of going every day to a house where there was a seventeen-year-old girl, so as not to compromise her and bind himself, now boldly came to her every day and treated her not as a prospective bride, but as an acquaintance who had no sex." Julie is now 27 and although even richer due to the death of her brother, less intimidating to prospective husbands. -- Lola
from page 687-688 of original text
page 547-549 Pevear/Volokhonsky translation