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Aleksandr Isaevich Solzhenitsyn 1918-2008

Old 08-03-08, 11:27 PM
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Aleksandr Isaevich Solzhenitsyn 1918-2008

Although there is a thread in the Book Forum devoted to his passing, thought it worth noting here since he was so influential in world politics in addition to his standing in the literary world.

While not agreeing with all his stances, he became a hero to me during my college days thanks to a great literature professor named David McClellan who introduced Solzhenitsyn to wide-eyed college undergrads by regaling us with the exploits of Russia's most famous dissident in that day.

The courage that he and other oppressed writers displayed in facing Siberian labor camps, exile, reprisals, deprivation, and even death were shining examples of the triumph of the human spirit and thirst for freedom. If he had written nothing but "One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich", it would have cemented his place in world lit. While I don't regard him as the most accomplished or talented writer (say, along the lines of Tolstoy or Dostovesky), his life transcended his art (or became intertwined) in such a way as to inspire millions of oppressed peoples.

I also appreciated his shunning of the limelight and his willingness to criticize western culture for its lack of will & spirituality even though such positions did not endear him even to his anti-communist admirers.

Last edited by creekdipper; 08-03-08 at 11:31 PM. Reason: misspelled name
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Old 08-04-08, 04:13 PM
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A great man. RIP. He was pulling back the surface to examine the evil of communism while many of our media were willing accomplises in covering it up.
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Old 08-04-08, 07:27 PM
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His books influenced so many.

Al Stewart was profoundly influenced by his book 'The Gulag Archipelago', it was a big influence on his song 'Roads To Moscow'. The latter part of the song.
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Old 08-04-08, 07:33 PM
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I just ordered Ivan, I should really re-read Gulag again. I loved it in school, but really don't remember much of the details anymore.
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Old 08-05-08, 09:58 AM
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Someone should put together a you tube video of all the TV news folks screwing up his name while broadcasting news of his death..
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