By Denis Kozlov

In the wake of Stalin’s loss of life in 1953, the Soviet Union entered a interval of relative openness often called the Thaw. Soviet voters took benefit of the hot possibilities to meditate at the nation’s turbulent historical past, from the Bolshevik Revolution, to the phobia, to international warfare II. maybe the main influential of those conversations happened in and round Novyi mir (New World), the main revered literary magazine within the kingdom. In The Readers of Novyi Mir, Denis Kozlov exhibits how the discussion among literature and readers through the Thaw remodeled the highbrow existence and political panorama of the Soviet Union.

Powerful texts via writers like Solzhenitsyn, Pasternak, and Ehrenburg led hundreds of thousands of Novyi mir’s readers to re-examine their lives, entrenched ideals, and dearly held values, and to confront the USSR’s historical past of political violence and social upheaval. And the readers answered. sufferers and perpetrators alike wrote letters to the magazine, reexamining their very own activities and bearing witness to the tragedies of the former decades.

Kozlov’s insightful remedy of those confessions, present in Russian documents, and his cautious examining of the most important writings of the interval strength today’s readers to reconsider universal assumptions approximately how the Soviet humans interpreted their country’s violent prior. The letters demonstrate frequent know-how of the fear and that literary dialogue of its legacy used to be primary to public lifestyles throughout the overdue Soviet a long time. via tracing the highbrow trip of Novyi mir’s readers, Kozlov illuminates how minds swap, even in a closed society.

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