This book, first published in 1984, was the first full biography of Solzhenitsyn. Starting with his childhood, it covers every period of his life in considerable detail, showing how Solzhenitsyn’s development paralleled and mirrored the development of Soviet society: ambitious and idealistic in the twenties and thirties, preoccupied with the struggle for survival in the forties, hopeful in the fifties and sixties and disillusioned in the seventies. Solzhenitsyn’s life thus serves as a paradigm for the history of twentieth-century Communism and for the intelligentsia’s attitudes to Communism. At the same time, this book relates Solzhenitsyn’s life to his works, all of which contain a large element of autobiography.
Table of Contents
1. Out of Chaos and Suffering 2. Childhood 3. Farewell to the Old World 4. Writer and Communist 5. Marriage 6. Fighting for the Fatherland 7. Arrest 8. An Enemy of the Toiling Masses 9. Two Are An Organisation 10. First Steps in the Archipelago 11. To the New Jerusalem 12. Life Among the Trusties 13. Special-Assignment Prisoner 14. In the First Circle 15. The Parting of the Ways 16. Not Quite Siberia 17. A Son of Gulag 18. Exiled ‘In Perpetuity’ 19. Cancer Ward 20. Matryona’s Place 21. The Schoolmaster from Ryazan 22. On the Threshold 23. Breakthrough 24. A True Helper of the Party 25. The Crest of the Wave 26. First Doubts 27. Lenin Prize Candidate 28. Not Another Pasternak 29. Enter the KGB 30. The Turning-Point 31. A Period of Adjustment 32. The Best Form of Defence 33. Letter to the Writers’ Congress 34. Playing the Western Card 35. Portrait of the Artist at Fifty 36. Expulsion from the Writers’ Union 37. The Taming of Novy Mir 38. The Nobel Prize 39. The Start of a Vast Enterprise 40. Death of a Poet 41. Whose Life Is It Anyway? 42. Divorce 43. Coming Into the Open 44. The Gulag Archipelago 45. Deported 46. First Months in the West 47. Taking Positions 48. Clarifications 49. On the Move 50. Talking to the Europeans 51. The Sage of Vermont 52. Epilogue