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The Gulag Archipelago [Kindle Edition]

Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn , Thomas P Whitney , Harry Willets
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (19 customer reviews)

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Book Description

The Gulag Archipelago is Solzhenitsyn's masterwork, a vast canvas of camps, prisons, transit centres and secret police, of informers and spies and interrogators and also of heroism, a Stalinist anti-world at the heart of the Soviet Union where the key to survival lay not in hope but in despair.



The work is based on the testimony of some two hundred survivors, and on the recollection of Solzhenitsyn's own eleven years in labour camps and exile. It is both a thoroughly researched document and a feat of literary and imaginative power. This edition has been abridged into one volume at the author's wish and with his full co-operation.


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Editorial Reviews

Review

"To live now and not to know this work is to be a kind of historical fool missing a crucial part of the consciousness of the age" -- W.L. Webb Guardian "The ferocious testimony of a man of genius" -- Stephen Spender London Magazine "What gives the book its value is the sound it gives out; the harsh roar give out by a wise and experienced animal as a warning that the herd is in danger" -- Rebecca West Sunday Telegraph "He is one of the towering figures of the age as a writer, as moralist, as hero... in The Gulag Archipelago he has acheived the impossible" -- Edward Crankshaw Observer

About the Author

Aleksander Solzhenitsyn was born in Kislovodsk, Russia, in 1918. He was brought up in Rostov, where he graduated in mathematics and physics in 1941. After distinguished service with the Red Army in the Second World War, he was imprisoned from 1945 to 1953 for making unfavourable remarks about Josef Stalin. He was rehabilitated in 1956, but in 1969 he was expelled from the Soviet Writers' Union for denouncing official censorship of his work. He was forcibly exiled from the Soviet Union in 1974 and deported to West Germany. Later he settled in America, but after Soviet officials finally dropped charges against him in 1991, he returned to his homeland in 1994 and died in August 2008, aged 89. He has written many books, of which One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich, Cancer Ward and The Gulag Archipelago are his best known.

Product Details

  • File Size: 1727 KB
  • Print Length: 496 pages
  • Publisher: Vintage Digital (December 31, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B0069SPA34
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #332,007 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
35 of 36 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars This is the Abridged Version October 19, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition
Although there is nothing inherently wrong with abridgements, books like this, and this book in particular, should never be abridged. I have read the 3 volume paperback version and it is worth the time...and some effort.

I'm writing this review so people will know they are buying the abridged version and not as an attempt to trash this masterwork. This is a great book! Because of this it should be read in its entirety.

Also, as an eBook there is no reason all 3 books could not be sold as one...after all, there is no weight to them.

Happy Reading.
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16 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Stunning depiction of the epitome of Communist Tyranny December 3, 1997
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
If one defines a totalitarian sytsm as a classification of government which attempts, throught the use of power and coercion, to control and regulate all aspects of communication and organizational life, there can be no doubt that The Gulag System, as depicted in The Gulag Arcipelago was in fact a mirror reflection of the larger totalitarian regime, and the epitome of ideological disparity which both motovated and inhibited Russo-American relations throughout the cold war era.

A skillfully crafted true-to-life account of the penal system of the Stalinist regime. Awesome in the true sense of the word.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The largest holocaust March 6, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition
This is a testimony of Russia's tragedy, and although Steven Spielberg will never tell this story, we have something much better in Solzhenitsyn: we have a man whose Will was made of iron and who survived it all and documented the story for the whole world.

This book is like eating prehistorical salamanders (you will have to read the book to understand this reference).
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
Format:Unknown Binding|Verified Purchase
I had purchased The Gulag Archipelago for my Kindle but ordered the hard copy at the same time, mainly because while the Kindle is great for travelling, nothing beats the real deal. Images that might as well not exist in the Kindle are clear (and disturbing) in this New Boston Fine and Rare Books edition. The book itself is of a very high quality, paper and font appropriate to the era and content, well bound and with a smart and robust slipcase. This is my first purchase from this publisher but I feel it is the start of a long and satisfying relationship; I love reading and, clearly, they bring the same passion to publishing.

The Gulag is a book that covers a long and horrifying period of Russian history, of enslavement and brutality, with astonishing mortality rates. Of those who did not perish, few retained any semblance of physical or mental health. The author is perhaps the only survivor with the intellectual strength and determination to remember and recount the horrors of that period. Throughout the book there is a sense that there is much, much more to tell, that the author is restraining himself from unleashing the full flood and overwhelming the reader. This book is not a relaxing read, it is heavy going but you will find yourself going back and re-reading passages, scarcely able to accept that humans are capable of such cruelty to their fellows, with no limit to their ability to dream up new and more imaginative forms of punishment. At the same time intense anger and frustration abounds; not directed towards the camp guards and administrators, but to all those who knew something, said nothing, condoned everything. Especially in the west, the free world, the land of the 'useful idiots' and the gullible.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This was not written by an author, but a survivor April 2, 2013
By RK
Format:Kindle Edition
This book can be repetitive at times. The writing is a bit rough at times. The subject matter is not for everyone to read, but if there is one book that is a summary of the brutality of the Stalinist system, this is it. Too many people forget about the purges in the USSR under Stalin, but this book is a reminder to everyone to read your history so it will not be repeated.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent. Well worth the long read. Classic! May 14, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This is an excellent series about the Soviet forced labour camp system. It was well-researched and used eyewitness accounts as well. The name means "Chief Administration of Corrective Labour Camps."
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This book should be a mandatory part of every high school curriculum in all countries. Generation after generation we must know what we could face if we allow for any authoritarian regime to rise and rule again.
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5.0 out of 5 stars What really happened in the USSR February 18, 2014
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
The Gulag Archipelago was written in secret, smuggled out in pieces, and is composed of several volumes. This book condenses into one volume the entire work, without losing the authenticity. Some chapters have been skipped or summarized, but every chapter of the original is listed so one can easily go find it in another volume.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars A Wakeup Call
This is what life lived in a secularized society (a society completely devoid of the sacred) becomes. Read more
Published 2 months ago by Patty Dann
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the most important books on Russia - ever.
This book not only reveals the immeasurable crimes committed against Russias' own people, but highlights the fact about communism: without it USA would have been a distant third in... Read more
Published 3 months ago by Jarno Lyytinen
5.0 out of 5 stars Should be required reading by all high school students
This is one of the most profound books and sometimes quite disturbing, but the truth often is.... It takes you through the many years of Marxist/Communist experience under Stalin... Read more
Published 5 months ago by KT
3.0 out of 5 stars Hard ReAD
Great book, A great deal of history, character development was difficult to follow at times. The subject matter was very interesting yet at times it was hard to say on track with... Read more
Published 11 months ago by Martha greenfield
4.0 out of 5 stars Early Exposé of Soviet Gulags
The Gulag Archipelago is about the gulag system in Soviet from 1918 to 1956. It is written by Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, who was imprisoned in the gulags himself. Read more
Published 13 months ago by M. E. Johnson
3.0 out of 5 stars Important but VERY long and a bit 'borring' in the end
The book documents the history of the Gulag with a lot of detailes from different prisoners and the author himself. Read more
Published 14 months ago by Claus Nue Møller
5.0 out of 5 stars Too Important to pass up!
Though probably still too long (it is reduced from the original), it is about the worst holocaust in history! Read more
Published 15 months ago by DaveMelton
4.0 out of 5 stars Review - The Gulag Archipelago
Overall a very thought-provoking book.
Sobering, disturbing in its details and implications.
Historically of great significance. Read more
Published 16 months ago by bruce williams
5.0 out of 5 stars Essential!
First read this in High School, almost 40 years ago. Still find it relevant and essential to understanding Russia, and the Soviet (and Marxist/Collectivist/Progressive) mindset... Read more
Published 17 months ago by D.A. Ford
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