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Alexander Solzhenitsyn portrays the corruption of the Soviet nation and the gulag by using first hand experiences in "One Day In The Life of Ivan Denisovich".

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Introduction

Martin 001134-0042 The Corrupt gulag system in Soviet Russia One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich, contains a deep meaning of life, but it is also a novel that Alexander Solzhenitsyn, a gulag victim, used to reveal the horrors found within the walls of a prison camp. Prison camps, during the time of Stalin, were a cheap labor workforce monitored by fear and corruption. Alexander Solzhenitsyn portrays the corruption of the Soviet nation and the gulag, simultaneously, by using first hand experiences in One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich. Through his use of explicit details, Solzhenitsyn exposed the corrupt laws of the bureaucracy. Solzhenitsyn grew up in Kislovodsk, Russia, and was later enlisted in the Red army under Joseph Stalin. He was later arrested in 1945 for letters he had written, containing information that denounced Stalin. The deed was done once he was accused of betraying the Soviet Union. With his humanist ideals, Solzhenitsyn risked his life to make the world a better place. Ivan Denisovich Shukhov (Shukhov) in Solzhenitsyn's novel was captured by the German army and "sentenced for high treason. He had testified to it himself" (55). The personal experience of Solzhenitsyn was reflected onto the fictional character Shukhov, "Yes, he'd surrendered to the Germans with the intention of betraying his country" (55). ...read more.

Middle

Solzhenitsyn intensifies the oppression placed upon the prisoners by the camp staff, with his use of diction. Soviet corruption was present during Shukhov's time in the gulag especially due to Krushchev destalinizing the nation. Khrushchev renounced many of Stalin's policies, "it's one o'clock, not noon." (53). This is one of the least important decrees to them, but is still recognized as being passed by "Soviet power" (53) exemplifying the prisoners awareness of the renouncements. Portraying how corrupt soviet power can simply walk into office and change a policy that was accepted for a long period of time under the prior premiere. The corrupt Stalin parliament made prison life dreadful, but Khrushchev improved these conditions by allowing letters to be sent home, or clothing to be sent from home. "A new year, 1951, had begun, and Shukhov had the right to two letters that year" (32), the corrupt government stopped those who rebelled against them from spreading their ideas. With the destalinization of the Soviet Union, the government was portrayed as being non-corrupt, but the government allowed the guards in the camp to take over the role that the prior government played. Corruption of power was found in the guards of the gulag, with the use of profanity to portray the intensity of the camp, but the carelessness of the guards at the same time. ...read more.

Conclusion

Russia does not need it, nor does any other country, for it will only lead to corruption and ultimately destruction. A human's basic rights and freedom are important, and by deny that, the government turns into an enormous, life-stealing, leach. After all, especially if corruption is at the root of it, no suffering should go unnoticed. Consequently, it was important for Solzhenitsyn to include this corruption of power as it was a firsthand experience and gives the reader a perspective of the cruel actions during Stalin and Khrushchev's reign in Soviet Russia. However, to what extent is Solzhenitsyn's recount of the situation accurate as he was imprisoned in 1945, released in 1953, but the novel was not published for another nine years. Despite how traumatizing a situation may be, nine years from the occurrence of the situation to the novel being written allows for other events that have been encountered to skew his memories. Was the corruption described in the novel over exaggerated, or was it accurate? Another possibility would be that since Solzhenitsyn was imprisoned by the Soviet government for eight years, all that time in the camp allowing for him to soak up the corruption to be more severe then it may honestly be. Alexander Solzhenitsyn portrays the corruption of the Soviet nation and the gulag, hand in hand, by using first hand experiences in One Day In The Life of Ivan Denisovich. ...read more.

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