One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich: A Novel

One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich: A Novel

Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, H. T. Willetts

Language: English

Pages: 192

ISBN: 0374226431

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub

First published in the Soviet journal Novy Mir in 1962, One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich stands as a classic of contemporary literature. The story of labor-camp inmate Ivan Denisovich Shukhov, it graphically describes his struggle to maintain his dignity in the face of communist oppression. An unforgettable portrait of the entire world of Stalin's forced work camps, One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich is one of the most extraordinary literary documents to have emerged from the Soviet Union and confirms Solzhenitsyn's stature as "a literary genius whose talent matches that of Dosotevsky, Turgenev, Tolstoy"--Harrison Salisbury

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barbed wire may distort the zeks’ personalities, but they cannot blot them out completely: “Outwardly, the gang all looked the same, all wearing identical black jackets with identical number patches, but underneath there were big differences. You’d never get Buynovsky to sit watching a bowl, and there were jobs that Ivan Denisovich left to those beneath him.” At supper, Ivan Denisovich takes a moment to indulge in a character study of an old man who has been imprisoned “as long as the Soviet

Kh-123’s spoon stopped short of his mouth. “Bogus,” he said angrily. “So much art in it that it ceases to be art. Pepper and poppy seed instead of good honest bread. And the political motive behind it is utterly loathsome—an attempt to justify a tyrannical individual. An insult to the memory of three generations of the Russian intelligentsia!” (He was eating his gruel without savoring it. It wouldn’t do him any good.) “But would it have got past the censor if he’d handled it differently?” “Oh

me of my winter uniform and gave me a summer outfit, secondhand, socks that had done three tours of duty, a shortarsed greatcoat. I was a young fool; I didn’t know I could have refused to turn the stuff in and sent them to hell. And I’d gotten this deadly entry in my papers: ‘Discharged—son of a kulak.’ Try and get a job with that in your record! I was four days from home by train, but they wouldn’t issue me a travel pass, or a single day’s rations. They just gave me one last dinner and booted me

yelled. Counting again, the bastards! Why now, when they’d cleared it all up? An ugly noise went through the ranks. All the hatred they’d felt for the Moldavian was switched to the guards. They kept up their din and made no effort to move away from the gates. “What’s this, then?” the guard commander bellowed. “Want me to sit you down on the snow? Don’t think I won’t. I’ll keep you here till morning!” He would, too. Nothing out of the ordinary. Prisoners had been made to sit down often enough

before. Or even lie down. It would be: “Down! Guards—guns at the ready!” The zeks knew this sort of thing could happen. They started inching back from the gates. The guards urged them on with shouts of “Get back! Get back there!” Zeks in the rear shouted angrily at those in front. “What are you leaning on the gate for, anyway, you sons of bitches?” The mob was slowly forced backward. “Form up in fives! First five! Second! Third!” By now the moon was shining full-strength. The redness had gone

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