Question by : What happens in the novel Petersburg?
I have to have read to page 200 by tomorrow and i don’t think I’m gonna make it. Can you tell me what happens, enough to give me something to discuss in class? Thanks!
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Answer by KIRKUK
The focus is on a father and a son – Apollon and Nikolai – who have been abandoned by the mother, who two and a half years earlier ran off with an Italian singer. Apollon is 68 and a senator hoping for one final advance in his career. He is unloving towards his son and isolated from much of the world around him. Nikolai has made some sort of promise to a group planning to kill his father with a bomb and is handed a sardine tin containing the explosives. The promise seems to have been made after a failed bid the win the hand of Sofia who is married to his old school friend Sergei. Meanwhile the conspirators Dudkin and the head of the party, who uses various aliases, start to fall apart with the former going mad and killing the latter. Nikolai disgraces himself and his father by going round town in a mask and after his mother returns and his father shows some sort of love after his career collapses he no longer wants to use the bomb. But the bomb has gone missing, discovered by his father, and goes off in the study not killing anyone but exposing the hate at the core of the family and driving son and father apart for ever…
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