On today's Radio Free Acton podcast, John Couretas talks with Daniel J. Mahoney, of Assumption College, about the legacy of Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn. The segment is about 20 minutes long, beginning at timecode 1’48” and running until 22’20”.
The BBC’s flagship discussion program, The Forum, has run a 44-minute episode entitled Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn: Revealing the Gulag. According to its website:
The Russian author Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn was a towering literary figure whose novels, chronicles and essays have lifted the lid on the horrors of the Soviet gulag network, which over several decades incarcerated millions of often innocent prisoners. Born a hundred years ago, Solzhenitsyn survived the brutal conditions of a gulag in Kazakhstan and it was this harrowing experience that provided the impetus for his best-known works, starting with his novella, One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich and culminating in The Gulag Archipelago, a multi-volume history of the Soviet forced labour camps from 1918 to 1956.
Bridget Kendall is joined by two Solzhenitsyn scholars: Professor Daniel Mahoney from Assumption College in the United States and Dr. Elisa Kriza from Bamberg University; and by Professor Leona Toker of Hebrew University in Jerusalem, an expert on labour camp literature.
Go here to listen online or download the entire episode. And here below is a 2-minute excerpt:
In connection with Solzhenitsyn’s centenary, Почта России (Russian Post) has issued a new first-class stamp (denomination 27 rubles) that goes into circulation immediately around the entire Russian Federation.
CoLibri Books have just published a new collection of Solzhenitsyn’s thoughts, entitled “Россия. Запад. Украина” (“Russia. The West. Ukraine”), compiled by Natalia Solzhenitsyn. This is a beautifully presented slim 5x7 hardback of 176 pages. It opens with a 4-page introduction from the compiler, followed by a 110-page section entitled “Россия и Запад” (“Russia and the West”). This section, presented in chronological order, is comprised of 21 selections excerpted from Solzhenitsyn’s speeches, press-conferences, interviews, and essays, beginning with the Walter Cronkite/CBS interview of June 1974, and ending with the Der Spiegel interview of July 2007. There follows a 39-page second section entitled “Об Украине” (“About Ukraine”), comprised of 11 selections, again presented chronologically, from the prophetic part V, chapter 2 of the Gulag Archipelago (written in 1967), to the author’s Izvestiya article from March 2008, just months before his death. The book is rounded off by a 9-page “Краткие пояснения” (“Brief explanatory notes”) that place each selection in context and provide precise bibliographical information about earlier publications across various languages.
Jack Fowler at the National Review reflects on Solzhenitsyn’s centennial, and posts the full text of Solzhenitsyn’s 1983 Templeton Address, which originally ran in the 22 July 1983 issue of National Review.
A beautiful new re-issue of the abridged Gulag Archipelago (authorized by Solzhenitsyn) is just out from Vintage Classics in the UK. This thoughtful new edition adds a profound foreword by Jordan B. Peterson that goes to the very heart of what this terrifying and uplifting book is all about, as well as a new glossary and index that will help readers orient themselves anew in Archipelago's rich material.
The new issue of St. Austin Review contains several interesting articles about Solzhenitsyn, including an editorial by Joseph Pearce on the lasting significance of Solzhenitsyn; Daniel J. Mahoney on Solzhenitsyn’s “capacity to illumine the truth of things”, Fr. Benedict Kiely on the miniature “Remembrance of the Departed”, and Susan Treacy on Solzhenitsyn and Shostakovich.