The Gulag

1443 Words6 Pages
One day in the Life of Ivan Desinovich by Alex Solzhenitsyn, published in 1962 describes the Gulag as a prison used by the Soviet government under Stalin to dehumanize it’s prisoners. Despite being in the Gulag, Alexander Solzhenitsyn manages to survive these experiences and describes them through the use of Ivan and his fellow protagonists. Solzhenitsyn explores this topic by employing vivid imagery while appealing to the Russian people with his symbolism and allegories. The combination of themes and motifs communicate to the Russian people how a few prisoners managed to survive in such a prison that was meant to take away their humanity and transform them into mindless slaves.
The author used the theme of the struggle for human dignity, as the Gulag was designed to attack not only the character’s physical and spiritual dignity. Officials called prisoners by numbers, for example, guards called
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Solzhenitsyn uses this text for it to serve as an allegory, as a waking call to the Russian people, he uses it as a way to get through what happens in the Gulag through the use of third person, a combination of visual imagery, motifs, symbolism, metaphors to develop the themes of faith, struggle for human dignity, and the techniques used by the Gulag to dehumanize its prisoners. He also uses them to develop the characters, as each character is a symbol of people he met in real life while he was in the Gulag, thus this shows us that Solzhenitsyn uses the themes and literary features to describe his past as being an “enemy of the state”, as well as being locked up in the Gulag, the author used this book as a memoir, so it recounts what the prisoners suffered, to have an effect on the Russian people and show them what the System was really like for those who were lower class “Enemies of Stalin’ setup
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