"The Christmas Tree and the Wedding" is a short story written by Russian author Fyodor Dostoyevsky published in 1848. The piece is narrated by an awkward outcast attending a Christmas party. He observes the party's guest of honour and takes special interest in one of the children.
The narrator begins by mentioning to the reader that he had just been to a wedding but recalls a Christmas party that he had found more interesting.
The party was given with the pretext of being a children's party, but its real purpose was for the wealthy host's family to talk business with rich members of the community. The wealthiest guest was Julian Mastakovich, a rotund landowner.
Without anyone to talk to, the narrator fell to simply observing the guests. The narrator takes particular interest in the children. They were given gifts in accordance with their social standing. The eleven-year-old daughter of a wealthy government contractor received an expensive doll, while the poorest child, the son of the family governess, received only a small book without illustrations or even a front and back cover.
After being bullied by the other richer boys, the poor boy retreats to another room where he and the rich daughter play happily with the doll. Julian Matsakovich also retreats from the rest of the crowd to observe the rich daughter, who already had a dowry set aside of 300,000 rubles. As Mastakovich observes the girl, he calculates what her dowry (with interest) would be at age sixteen, and he comes up with the astounding sum of 500,000 rubles.
Mastakovich approaches the girl and kisses her on the head. The girl recoils from his gesture, and she looks to her playmate for protection. Mastakovich tries to scare the poor boy away while trying to get a promise of love from the young girl, and eventually he causes a scene where he chases the poor boy around the party, whipping at him with his handkerchief.
The wedding that the narrator came across five years later was indeed the wedding between Julian Mastakovich and the rich girl, now sixteen .
Famous works of the author Fyodor Dostoyevsky: Poor Folk, The Double, The Landlady, Netochka Nezvanova, Uncle's Dream, The Village of Stepanchikovo, Humiliated and Insulted, The House of the Dead, Notes from Underground, Crime and Punishment, The Gambler, The Idiot, The Eternal Husband, Demons, The Adolescent, The Brothers Karamazov.
The poem's structure was heavily influenced by Eliot's extensive reading of Dante Alighieri and makes several references to the Bible and other literary works—including William Shakespeare's plays Henry IV Part II, Twelfth Night, and Hamlet, the poetry of seventeenth-century metaphysical poet Andrew Marvell, and the nineteenth-century French Symbolists. Eliot narrates the experience of Prufrock using the stream of consciousness technique developed by his fellow Modernist writers. The poem, described as a "drama of literary anguish", is a dramatic interior monologue of an urban man, stricken with feelings of isolation and an incapability for decisive action that is said "to epitomize frustration and impotence of the modern individual" and "represent thwarted desires and modern disillusionment".
Prufrock laments his physical and intellectual inertia, the lost opportunities in his life and lack of spiritual progress, and he is haunted by reminders of unattained carnal love. With visceral feelings of weariness, regret, embarrassment, longing, emasculation, sexual frustration, a sense of decay, and an awareness of mortality, "Prufrock" has become one of the most recognised voices in modern literature.
Among the most significant works by Eliot's: "Portrait of a Lady", "Preludes", "Whispers of Immortality", "Gerontion", "The Waste Land", "The Hollow Men", "Ash Wednesday",Ariel Poems", "Journey of the Magi", "A Song for Simeon", "Old Possum's Book of Practical Cats", "The Awefull Battle of the Pekes and the Pollicles", "Gus: The Theatre Cat", "Growltiger's Last Stand", "The Naming of Cats", "Burnt Norton", "East Coker", "The Dry Salvages", "Little Gidding", "Four Quartets".