World Literature Essay

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Lana Elborno
World Literature
Final Essay

Alexander Solzhenitsyn revolutionized the world of literature; he changed it from being about simply telling a story or just reiterating facts to exposing the truth and hoping to change the world. This began when Solzhenitsyn spoke out against the Russian government and was then sent to a prison camp in Siberia. He wrote about his experience in prison, and this was the first time anyone found out what was happening in the prison camps. Solzhenitsyn realized since no one knew about the cruelty in the prison camps, the violence kept taking place. But by him exposing the truth, he drew attention to the prison camps and stopped the violence. This then became his philosophy, that it was an author’s job to point out the lies and ills of the government, and then the lies and violence will stop. He made that clear in his speech for the Nobel Prize; he also stressed the importance of reading literature from different nations. He said that it allows people to understand different cultures and different backgrounds. The books and works that we have read in class, such as In Time of the Butterflies, Inspector General, Things Fall Apart, and Kite Runner help up to Solzhenitsyn’s standard because they exposed the faults in their governments and allowed the readers to gain more perspective about their history and culture.

The books and works that most exemplified Solzhenitsyn’s ideals of exploiting a corrupt government were “Babi Yar” by Yevgeny Yevtushenko, In Time of the Butterflies by Julia Alvarez, and “The Inspector General” by Nicolay Gogol. All of these works have something in common: they all bring the readers attention to an unknown event or situation. Before “Babi Yar”, this execution of Jews in Kiev was never recognized. However, Yevtushenko revealed this tragedy and brought the death of 33,000 Jews to justice. Also since all the evidence of Babi Yar was to be destroyed and the people who escaped the...
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