Academic journal article Cross - Cultural Communication

The Three Sisters: Chekhov's Idea into Cultural Conflict between the Attitudes and Aspirations

Academic journal article Cross - Cultural Communication

The Three Sisters: Chekhov's Idea into Cultural Conflict between the Attitudes and Aspirations

Article excerpt


Chekhov was a far-sighted and freedom-loving personality; he respected the human rights and equality. In his stories and plays he presented social problems of the people, prospective ideas of Russian Intellectuals, Realism, Cynicism, Skepticism, Pessimism, Failure, etc.. In Chekhov's opinion life of the human is based on false conviction such as slavery. In The Three Sisters, he reflects his ideas of life, deep look at people, and sympathy for each other to attract attention of the readers and continues his way, having raised new issues of life.

Key words: Chekhov; Comedy; The Three Sisters; Moscow; Satire; Character


Chekhov's humor is refined satire that is far from exaggeration. In contrary to classical writers he never focuses on a character and shows everybody and not the only one. It is interesting that the scene decoration and requisites originate from Chekhov's spirit. Chekhov's characters are fatigued and weary persons, obstinate, stupid and talkative, they do not listen to anybody and nobody listens to them. Love is present here, just like the works of all the other writers of the world. But there is a difference, love is mainly unrequited in Chekhov's works as even the lovers do not understand each other as e.g. Treplov's love to Nina in "Seagull", Sonya's love to Astrov in "Uncle Vanya" and Audrey's failure in "Three Sisters". On the other hand Chekhov's characters are miserable and feeble to personal mistakes and social difficulties. They only try to pretend just and keep away from the reality to release from various difficulties. "The Cherry Orchard" becomes an abandoned and insignificant area and the sisters leave their house in the play "Three Sisters" and seek for a refuge. Treplov ruins his reputation and is terrified from his residence in the play "The Seagull"; just like the coffee table and the whole house in a mess in "Uncle Vanya". Chekhov skillfully used satire in his plays. E.g. there are wanderers in the play "The Seagull" who look for happiness and some, meeting their fates, do not make attempts. All the characters in "The Cherry Orchard" are landlords or servants; it is interesting that the rich men do not have advantages to servants and the servants sneer at their landlords. The characters of "Uncle Vanya" are hopeless, in spite of being unemployed or working; they do not find a way at dead ends. There are two opposite groups in "Three Sisters", some are romantic and polite; the others are realists. Nobody can do work as all of them are in misunderstanding.


Three sisters live in a town far away from Moscow where there is a military base; they have higher education and want to return to Moscow, which they left for about eleven years ago. From sisters Olga teaches in the school and to her words she got tired from free working.

Olga: ". . .and these four years that I have been teaching at the school I really have felt my youth and strength draining out of me, drop by drop and my one dream growing stronger all the time." (Chekhov, 1973, p. 94)

The other sister Masha who had broken up marriage when she was young and now was in love with Vershinin, tries to reveal her intellectual skills in public and at last third sister Irina decided to overcome own depression and sadness using own volitional abilities. She is indifferent to Tuzenbach and Solyony who continuously made court to her. At the end Tuzenbach is killed in a duel. Irina is a very dreamy person and she expresses the following about her:

"Irina: I am twenty-three, I have been working for a long time, my brain has dried up, I have got thin, old and stupid. And there is nothing, no satisfaction! Time is passing and I seem to be moving away from the real, beautiful life, moving further and further away into a king of chasm. I am in complete despair. And how I am steel alive, how I have not killed myself yet. I do not understand." (Chekhov, 1973, p. 13 9). Their brother Andrey is married to Natalya and his sisters are not fond of her appreciating her as illiterate. …

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