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Ivan’s unexpected death was certainly a terrible shock for Peter at the moment he first learnt about the same; as the painful moments his childhood friend spent at the verge of death portrayed a dark, drab and dismal picture of the ultimate ceasing of mortal life. Although he was well aware of the bitter reality that everyone had to give up the ghost sooner or later, yet no one actually appears to be ready to submit to the fact that his name is also included in the list of those leaving the world. An intense sway of unpleasant idea looked piercing into his mind, leaving him at the state of horror and anxiety. However, soon he realized that it was actually Ivan, and not he himself to become the prey of death. Consequently, man’s urge to live a long and an immortal life for the future decades to come could be explored in his sub-conscious that forbids him to admit the certainty about the end of life. It is therefore, Peter pretended to ignore the entire sourness of the memories related to Ivan’s immediate demise within days (Tolstoy, 101-102). The author rightly elucidates an imperative divergence between “intellectual knowledge and emotional realization” of any social or natural phenomenon, which keeps humans at a safe distance from realizing the bitter facts courageously at heart. Consequently, man does not surrender before the powers that could turn all his strength and abilities into weaknesses and disabilities respectively. Although Peter scared death, and felt unpleasant exit of his friend from the world, yet he mistakenly viewed that death had also departed from there along with Ivan far away to some yonder lands. The contemporary era psychologist R. Kastenbaum has elaborated the facts behind anxiety, denial and acceptance of the death phenomenon in various volumes on human perils and fears about death. While explaining the reasons behind one’s anxieties about the inevitability of the end of life, Kastenbaum is of the opinion that age, gender and life experiences certainly play dynamic role in respect of the intensity of the anxiety people maintain regarding death. The psychologist, based on his study on the same topic, refutes the false notion that the elderly fear death more than the young and middle aged individuals. On the contrary, the elderly start accepting the bitter reality that they are entering the period of life when death is at hand, and they could become prey to it at any moment. Since they already have consumed the most productive years of their life, and have made accomplishments in accordance with the education, skill, experience and proficiency etc they had obtained in their active years. Thus, they happily accept the death phenomenon as an inevitable part of life, and do not try to deny the same. On the other hand, since the young individuals have developed many dreams in life, they have serious reservations about the end of life without meeting the goals and hitting their targets in an apposite manner. It is therefore, Kastenbaum (2010) regards early 20s as the period of lif ...Show more

Summary

The Death of Ivan Ilyich Module title: Module ID: Submission date: The Paper: First published in 1886, The Death of Ivan Ilyich serves as a remarkable novel by distinguished nineteenth century Russian novelist and intellectual Leo Tolstoy, in which the author has elucidated the experience of witnessing the death by the protagonist’s friend Peter Ivanovish at the eve of the despondent condition of his close friend and protagonist of the novel under-examination, Ivan Ilyich, struggling between life and death at his death bed…
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