Solzhenitsyn as he saw himself

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Stephen Kotkin on the turbulent life, exile and writing of the Russian author.

  • TLS

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One hundred years ago this month, Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn was born in Kislovodsk (“acidic waters”), a curative town in the North Caucasian foothills of Russia, which was then wracked by civil war.

Earlier that year, 300 miles north at Novocherkassk, the capital of the Don Cossacks, former tsarist officers had proclaimed the formation of a…

The force, labelled…

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