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The Lady with the Pet Dog Historical Context

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Historical Context

Marital Infidelity

"The Lady with the Pet Dog" was published in 1899 and heralded the moral dilemmas of the coming century. Marital infidelity was not exactly new in literature at the time. In fact, it was the central subject of three of the greatest novels of the latter half of the nineteenth century—Hawthorne's The Scarlet Letter, Flaubert's  Madame Bovary and Tolstoy's Anna Karenina. Marriages were often arranged at this time, and people married very young and often for social or economic advancement. Consequently many marriages were unhappy, and divorce was not usually an option. Love affairs, then, were something of a preoccupation among the upper classes though they occurred far less frequently than literature, and the gossip of the time, led one to believe. Chekhov himself complained that the seaside resort of Yalta had a greatly exaggerated reputation for immorality, but in "The Lady with the...

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This section contains 1,006 words
(approx. 4 pages at 300 words per page)
Purchase our The Lady with the Pet Dog Study Guide
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The Lady with the Pet Dog from BookRags and Gale's For Students Series. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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