This article attempts to reassess the last years of the writer Lev Levanda's life and work in order to consider new paradigms for understanding the influence of Russia's first pogroms (1881–82) on Jewish individuals. Conventionally, studies of the pogroms deal with the macro-picture: How did the Jewish people react? This research investigates the response of one person, Levanda, who previously tethered himself ideologically to the idea of integration in Russia. After 1882, he found himself without an ideal and mission. He flirted with several movements, including Ḥibbat Tsiyyon, but could not find a positive solution and consolation to his disappointments. The pogroms apparently contributed to the mental illness that killed him.