Lopakhin character analysis and review in The Cherry Orchard, by Anton Chekhov



The role of Lopakhin is very important in highlighting the ludicrous attitude of Lyubov . He is a practical person and flourishing businessman. He belongs to the lower strata of Russian society that gained affluence after the emancipation of serfs. His "father was a serf". He himself had served the aristocratic family of Lubov once. He advises her to "divide up the orchard...rent them out". It would earn her an income of a "twenty thousand roubles a year" as well as she will be able to save her a vast portion of the orchard. But she is concerned more for the symbol of her aristocratic name i.e. Cherry Orchard. This is really silly, laughable and ironical. But this holds deep pathos too. "Cut it down?" is her reaction to the advice of Lopakhin. Ironically, though she does not want to cut even a single tree of the orchard, yet not cutting a portion of the orchard would mean auction of the entire orchard. And the worst thing is...the serf buys the orchard in auction.

Though Lopakhin is a big success in business yet he seems to have neglected the most important part of his life i.e. love and family. Varya is in deep love with him but he would ignore her at all events despite the fact that she is a good match for him and he does like her but Varya feels very negative about him:

"His mind is all consumed with his deals, his business; I'm the furthest thing from it...Everyone is saying we're congratulating me, but the truth of it is there's nothing there, nothing at all whatsoever, it's all just a dream".

His role remains more of a professional business man than that of a sympathiser and rescuer of the family. Though he really and awfully respects Lyubove yet he would not help her out of the situation except for the suggestion to divide the land into portions and lease it out to the vacationers. Everybody in the play expects that he would save the family but he acts like a pure utilitarian.



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Cute Angel123
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Feb 2018
Cute Angel123 says...

Nice Post on the nineteenth century curvature of the class system and birth of a new merchant class from the very debris of the then aristocrats. We may put all the weight on his side but the truth is that he has no human heart for feelings like being humane and kind. Probably, its necessary to crush feelings for success in the new world order.

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Usman Butt
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Feb 2018
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Usman Butt says...

To wound up his character,we can say that he is niether too supportive nor too selfish.He has pure professional skills.Moreover,Lopakhin is the symbol of merchant class-an uprising class in Russia at the end of nineteenth century.One of the fundamental drwabacks of his personality was his unromantic approach as he did not ever ready to accept Varya as his mistress.Most of the times,his character shows autobiographical elements.Chekhov's and Lopakhin's childhood have many similarities.On the other hand,Lopakhin is antithesis to Lyubov Ranevsky.If Ranevsky is romantic and generous,Lopakhin is prosaic,mercenary and vulnerable.

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