Why Are Some Peoople Able to Survive Longer Than Others? Essay
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The aim of this work is to answer the question, “Can we generalize why certain people were able to survive more than others”? To survive the Gulag, many prisoners had to fight with others for food, shelter, and simple medical care. Certain prisoners went into religious and intellectual medications to preserve at least the appearance of intelligence. The survival required willpower, strength of mind, skills, mercilessness, and a lot of luck. Every former Gulag prisoner explained his/her survival as a result of many insignificant strategies. A variety of memoirists claimed that the only reason why they have survived was due to their spiritual life. To distract themselves for the physical sufferings, many prisoners created mental…show more content… The administrators of the camps used minimal resources for hospitals and severely limited the number of prisoners, who could ask for an absence of work. Prisoners were perceived skeptically and were considered to be potential malingerers, who used to shirk off. Such suspicious prisoners were usually substantiated. Prisoners deliberately mutilated themselves to avoid heavy work.
Many authors still remember the cases when doctors felt the need for prisoners to miss work by giving them the ability to reestablish their health. As Evgenia Ginzburg questions, “…what has made Dr. Klimenko to not only keep me in the hospital, but also try to bring homemade, high-calorie food?” Medical services were accounted as some of the most privileged positions in the camp system. Prisoners fought each other for a place as a doctor or an assistant, trying to avoid the devastating and dangerous heavy work in the Gulag. Often prisoners, who held the medical positions, did not have any medical college degrees.
Janusz Bardach was able to survive the harsh conditions in Kolyma partly because he pretended to be a junior at Medical University. Thus, it gave him the opportunity to get a job as an assistant of the camp doctor. In 1942, twenty years old Janusz Bardach, who back then was a soldier in the Red Army was sentenced for the betrayal. Instead of punishment, he was sent to the most devastating Gulag camp in eastern Siberia. “How did I survive? Self-esteem and desire to live. I wanted to