Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Alexandr Solzhenitsyn 1918 - 2008

One of the world's greatest writers, 1970 Nobel prizewinner for Literature, Russia's Alexandr Solzhenitsyn died August 3, 2008, in Moscow. His main works, One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich, and the Gulag Archipelago dealt with the repressive imprisonment of free thinkers under the Communist regime in the Soviet Union. Solzhenitsyn was himself a prisoner in such camps.

From Contemporary Authors Online, available with a library card at the Glendale Library Online Resources page in BIography Resource Center (under "General Resouces"): "Solzhenitsyn first ran afoul of communist authorities in 1945 while serving in the Soviet Army. Accused of transmitting questionable correspondence to a fellow officer, Solzhenitysn was sent to a Moscow prison, where he became a regular patron of the prison library and absorbed the works of writers ranging from Yevgeny Zamyatin, a Soviet master of the 1920s, to John Dos Passos, the celebrated American novelist. After being transferred to a research prison populated by scientists and technicians, Solzhenitsyn regularly occupied himself by imagining poems and committing them to memory. "

He was exiled from his home country from 1974 - 1994, for a time living in the United States, and returned to Russia after the fall of the Soviet Union. Solzhenitsyn was eighty-nine years old at his passing.

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