Lecture: Dr. Barbara Martin-Writing History in the Soviet Underground

DateDecember 4, 2019
Time4:30 - 5:30 pm
LocationDraper 152
DescriptionIn the 1970s, the struggle of Soviet dissidents for human rights made headlines all over the world. The publication in the West of Alexander Solzhenitsyn’s three-volume literary-historical research The Gulag Archipelago, in 1973, was undoubtedly the most significant milestone in this struggle for memory. While the regime preferred to ignore the dark pages of the past and to celebrate the Soviet Union’s victories, Solzhenitsyn was the first to reveal the huge scale of the Gulag phenomenon and to document the horror of a prisoner’s journey to the camps, based on hundreds of testimonies from former prisoners.
This talk will explore the history of the creation of this work, which involved a broad network of witnesses and secret helpers, the Soviet regime’s reaction to the publication, and its reception in the West and in the Soviet Union.
Dr. Barbara Martin is a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Basel, Switzerland. She is the author of Dissident Histories in the Soviet Union: from de-Stalinization to Perestroika (Bloomsbury, 2019).

Hosted by the Department of Modern Languages and Culture.
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PublisherCenter for Global Engagement
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