Making It in Capitalist Moscow

At the age of 23, the Russian novelist Leo Tolstoy was something of a train wreck. A handsome young man of privilege, he gambled away part of his inheritance at cards. He became an accomplished drinker and an even more accomplished womanizer. His prolific hedonism landed him in the venereal disease clinic at the University of Kazan, where he studied law for two years before dropping out. Desperate to turn his life around, he enlisted in the Russian army and fought in the Caucasus, the...

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