I borrowed the title of this paper from Virginia Woolf’s essay about Ivan Turgenev, “the Novels of Turgenev”. Woolf’s several essays had read and interpreted many classic writers in a Woolfian way. In particular, she expressed great interest and respect for Russian writers, one of whom is Ivan Turgenev. Although he is known as a 19th-century realist writer, Woolf understands him as the starting point of a comtemporary writer with dual attributes. Jessie Matz also uses “literary impressionism” to describe Woolf, Russian and other writers, “Impression” did not intend only objective sight but subjectivity, a duality of real seeing and personal vision. Related dualities followed, as impressionism could seem to deliver appearance or reality; to require innocence or sophistication; to favor life or art, the natural or the aesthetic.
Woolf often set up a parallel relationship between binary oppositeness such as form and content, the private and the public, major character and minor character, etc. Then she freely crossed their boundaries and translated a certain problem in the one world unto that of the other. Of course this ambivalence in Woolf and Turgenev does not resolve the real problem of war, nor does it conclude the tragic troubles of all human beings. It does enable us, however, to broaden our vision and envisage a possible common life.