By Harold Bloom

ISBN-10: 0791059189

ISBN-13: 9780791059180

Regardless of persecution and censorship in his place of birth, this Russian author has been capable of produce such vital works as in the future within the lifetime of Ivan Denisovich and The Gulag Archipelago. This name, Alexander Solzhenitsyn, a part of Chelsea residence Publishers’ smooth serious perspectives sequence, examines the main works of Alexander Solzhenitsyn via full-length severe essays through professional literary critics. furthermore, this identify includes a brief biography on Alexander Solzhenitsyn, a chronology of the author’s lifestyles, and an introductory essay written via Harold Bloom, Sterling Professor of the arts, Yale college.

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Additional info for Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn (Bloom's Modern Critical Views)

Example text

And . . Rusanov, caught unawares by this stealthy approach of death, not only could not fight it, but he could not in general think or decide or say anything about it in any way. It came illegally, and there was no rule, no set of instructions which would defend Pavel Nikolayevich. But once we accept that Ivan Ilyich and Rusanov share a common situation— both are bureaucrats who have fallen seriously ill—we realize that they have hardly anything in common. Tolstoy and Solzhenitsyn develop the same situation in radically different ways.

Solzhenitsyn had never before used Tolstoy so openly in the narrative; paradoxical as it may seem, he could only write like this about Tolstoy after he had proved his mettle against him in The First Circle. Only an artist who believes in his own strength and independence can open his work to the precursor in this way. In chapter 8, "What People Live By," Yefrem Podduyev, a construction worker, reads Tolstoy's didactic story of the same name (published in 1881), after noting the titles of several others from the same period.

He gave it to himself—for his creation day. In both cases, the tree represents a state of mind evoked by a woman—Natasha and Vega, respectively—and in both cases the sense of renewal proves illusory. Andrey does not marry Natasha, and Kostoglotov chooses not to stay with Vega. Both trees refer to moods, rather than permanent states. Cancer Ward thus continues Solzhenitsyn's engagement with Tolstoy and his legacy. He treats Tolstoy's innocents in a wonderfully sly way—by having them enter the government.

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Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn (Bloom's Modern Critical Views) by Harold Bloom

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