SOLZHENITSYN: A Documentary Record by Leopold -- Ed. Labedz

SOLZHENITSYN: A Documentary Record

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KIRKUS REVIEW

In the foreword, Harrison E. Salisbury states that throughout its long history no other country has persecuted its talent ""with such consistency and ferocity"" as Russia. This is corroborated in this compilation of letters, speeches, articles, reviews, etc. throughout the long attack against Solzhenitsyn following his 1956 rehabilitation by Khrushchev even to the point where Pravda tagged him a schizophrenic. On the other hand, via the sheaf of tributes which also appear, the steady course of his life manifests an anything but divided purposefulness and he figures along with many others in his own defense -- protesting against censorship and slander and remembering the words of Pushkin -- ""they are capable of loving only the dead."" There is detailed commentary on the whiplash each of his three major works provoked, on his expulsion from the Union of Soviet Writers, and finally of course on his receipt of the Nobel Prize in 1970 -- he is one of the three Russian recipients unacknowledged by the regime. But then as he wrote in The First Circle, ""Great writers are a second government."" The ""Record"" of the subtitle is the operative word apropos of the book's designation -- it is not for the casual admirer -- but once again Solzhenitsyn's extraordinary conscience and fortitude is affirmed.

Pub Date: July 28th, 1971
Publisher: Harper & Row