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Gulag Voices: An Anthology by Anne Applebaum, Jane Ann Miller

By Anne Applebaum, Jane Ann Miller

Anne Applebaum wields her enormous wisdom of this darkish bankruptcy in historical past and offers a set of the writings of survivors of the Gulag, the Soviet focus camps. even if the hole of the Soviet information to students has made it attainable to put in writing the historical past of this infamous focus camp method, files inform just one part of the tale. "Gulag: An Anthology" now fills within the different part. The backgrounds of the writers replicate the intense variety of the Gulag itself. listed below are the non-public tales of figures equivalent to popular literary student Dmitri Likhachev; Anatoly Marchenko, the son of illiterate labourers; and, American citizen Alexander Dolgun. those remembrances - a lot of them showing in English for the 1st time, every one selected for either literary and old worth - jointly highlight the unusual ethical universe of the camps, in addition to the relationships that prisoners had with each other, with their guards, and with specialist criminals who lived beside them. a necessary addition to the literature of this period, annotated for a new release that now not recalls the Soviet Union, "Gulag: An Anthology" will tell, curiosity, and encourage, supplying a resource for mirrored image on human nature itself.

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Documents are chosen not for their support of any single interpretation but for their particular historical importance or their general value in deepening understanding and facilitating discussion. The volumes are designed to be useful to students, scholars, and interested general readers. EXECUTIVE EDITOR OF THE ANNALS OF COMMUNISM SERIES Jonathan Brent, Yale University Press PROJECT MANAGER Vadim A. Staklo AMERICAN ADVISORY COMMITTEE Ivo Banac, Yale University Zbigniew Brzezinski, Center for Strategic and International Studies William Chase, University of Pittsburgh Friedrich I.

Our relatives too gathered, meeting at transfer points and at various little windows where information about us was given out, or more often was not. They were advised what to hand over, what to give us for when we stopped, where and what to provide for their prisoners. Many made friends. By that time we could guess how much they were going to give and to whom. One day we were all summoned “without belongings” to the governor of the prison. In a deliberately lugubrious tone, specially assumed for the occasion, he read out our sentences.

If a prisoner confessed, after all, then he or she must be guilty. Dolgun describes the methods he used to resist confessing—and to stay sane. Among other things he sang popular songs, hid his face under a hat to “train” the guards not to recognize when he was snatching an extra hour or two of illicit sleep, and “walked” from his prison cell in Moscow to America, counting tens of thousands of steps. He also made a “calendar” using dried bread balls and matchsticks. Eventually, he even learned the prisoners’ “Morse code,” tapped on the walls between cells, and was able to communicate with the prisoner next door to him.

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