Litchfield County: Happening in the Hills
Jan 12 – March 2, 2021 at 4pm each Tuesday

Cornwall Reads Great Fiction: Roxana Robinson teaches Anna Karenina

This winter, author, professor, and Cornwall resident Roxana Robinson, will lead a discussion of Tolstoy’s Anna Karenina, for 8 weeks. Each week, through Zoom meetings, Roxana will read a short excerpt from the book, and then lead a discussion of the week’s reading. With this series, the Cornwall Library continues its online programming designed to offer enlightenment, community, and a shared love of learning so valued by Cornwall residents.

“We’ll talk about vital, electrifying Anna and her handsome and mysterious lover, Vronsky”, says Robinson. “We’ll talk about Tolstoy, who he was and what he represented in 19th-century Russia, what Russia was like at that time, what the novel was doing, how Tolstoy prefigured modernism, what his intentions were in writing the book, what its factual origins were, how his family played into it, and anything else that comes in to my head. It is a fabulous, moving, fast-paced novel, not at all ponderous or weighty, and it is one of the greatest novels ever written, so this is the chance for everyone who’s been meaning to do so to read it, and the chance to re-read and savor it for those who already have done so.”

Robinson has taught Anna Karenina for nearly fifteen years in the MFA Program at Hunter College in New York City, and as she says, “I know it well and love it.” Participants should plan to read 100 pages a week. She expects people to fall behind in their reading but encourages everyone to stay with the group, saying “I hope they’ll come to the discussion anyway, so as they finally finish the book they’ll have these thoughts in their minds.”

Roxana Robinson is the author of ten books – six novels, three story collections and the biography of Georgia O’Keeffe. Her work has appeared in The New Yorker, The Atlantic, The New York Times, Best American Short Stories and elsewhere. She is the recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship and the Barnes & Noble Writers for Writers Award, among others, and she is a former president of the Authors Guild.

Class is open to all, and is free but donations are encouraged and welcomed. You don’t need to be in or from Cornwall to join the class! The edition of the book that will be used in the class is the Pevear and Volkhonsky translation. To register, go to the events/programs page on the Cornwall Library website at:

The Cornwall Library is a free library serving the Town of Cornwall. Its core book-lending program is supplemented by community-based educational events for children and adults, information services, art exhibitions, and a broad range of other activities. The Library depends upon private contributions and grants to support its activities; all donations are tax-deductible to the extent permitted by law.

online – please register in advance at

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