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Andrew, though as noble a soul as Pierre, differs from
his friend in important ways that make him a very distinct character,
and that illustrate Tolstoy’s philosophy of life. Andrew has a highly
intelligent and analytical mind, as we see in the profitable way
he runs his estate. He is devoted to his country, returning to active
duty even after nearly being killed at Austerlitz, and spending
months helping Speranski write a new civil code for Russia. Andrew,
though often detached, is emotionally honest and willing to examine
mysteries in himself, as we see in his frank admission early in
the novel that he is dissatisfied with marriage to his virtuous
and lovely wife, Lise. But Andrew’s flaw is a spiritual one: his
detachment is an intellectual advantage, but an emotional handicap.
Andrew is free from Pierre’s disabling search for the meaning of
life, but he is also unable to forge deep and lasting connections
with others, and unwilling to forgive their misdeeds. When Andrew
is first introduced, Pierre touches his arm; Andrew instinctively
flinches, disliking the contact. This physical reaction reflects
Andrew’s inability to be touched by others throughout his life.
Ultimately, he is a lonely individual whom even the love of Natasha
Ace your assignments with our guide to War and Peace!