May 28, 2024

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Persian publisher takes readers to “The Gulag Archipelago”

TEHRAN – Markaz, a major publisher in Tehran, has released a Persian translation of the first volume of “The Gulag Archipelago, 1918-1956”, a history and memoir of life in the Soviet Union’s prison camp system by Russian novelist Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn.

Ehsan Sanai Ardakani is the translator of the book, which is from a three-volume non-fiction text written between 1958 and 1968.

“The Gulag Archipelago” is Solzhenitsyn’s attempt to compile a literary-historical record of the vast system of prisons and labor camps that came into being shortly after the Bolsheviks seized power in Russia in 1917 and that underwent an enormous expansion during the rule of Stalin from 1924 to 1953. 

Various sections of the three volumes describe the arrest, interrogation, conviction, transportation and imprisonment of the Gulag’s victims by Soviet authorities over four decades. 

The work mingles historical exposition and Solzhenitsyn’s own autobiographical accounts with the voluminous personal testimony of other inmates that he collected and committed to memory during his imprisonment. 

Upon publication of the first volume of “The Gulag Archipelago” in 1973, Solzhenitsyn was immediately attacked by the Soviet press. 

It was translated into English and French the following year.

Despite the intense interest in his fate that was shown in the West, he was arrested and charged with treason on February 12, 1974, and was exiled from the Soviet Union the following day.

Photo: A combination photo shows Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn and the front cover of the Persian edition of his book “The Gulag Archipelago”.


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