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Book Title: Life and Fate|
The author of the book: Vasily Grossman
Date of issue: October 5th 2006
ISBN 13: 9780099506164
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 882 KB
Edition: Vintage Classics
Read full description of the books Life and Fate:This novel on the epic scale is a powerful, deeply moving and devastating depiction of a world torn apart by war and ideological tyranny. It is, as well, perhaps the most complete condemnation of totalitarianism to emerge from Russia, for the message that the Vasily Grossman—of Jewish origin and once an honored Soviet writer—delivers is that Stalinism and Nazism, in their falsehood, cruelty, and inhumanity, closely resemble each other.
As in War and Peace, the life of an entire society is evoked by the stories of a large number of vivid characters—most of them connected to one family, the Shaposhnikovs—and by a great variety of settings: domestic scenes, a physics laboratory (that of Victor Shtrum, probably a near-portrait of the author himself), German concentration and Soviet labor camps, the battlefield of Stalingrad.
The desperate struggle for this city, which became the turning point of the Second World War, is at the center of the novel. Grossman depicts it, and its effects on the wives and destinies of his characters, with Tolstoyan grandeur that finds room for intimate detail. This, along with the author's courageous attack on the ideologies of repression, underlies the importance of Life and Fate as one of the great novels of the century.
Read information about the authorрусс: Василий Гроссман
Born Iosif Solomonovich Grossman into an emancipated Jewish family, he did not receive a traditional Jewish education. A Russian nanny turned his name Yossya into Russian Vasya (a diminutive of Vasily), which was accepted by the whole family. His father had social-democratic convictions and joined the Mensheviks. Young Vasily Grossman idealistically supported the Russian Revolution of 1917.
When the Great Patriotic War broke out in 1941, Grossman's mother was trapped in Berdichev by the invading German army, and eventually murdered together with 20,000 to 30,000 other Jews who did not evacuate Berdychiv. Grossman was exempt from military service, but volunteered for the front, where he spent more than 1,000 days. He became a war reporter for the popular Red Army newspaper Krasnaya Zvezda (Red Star). As the war raged on, he covered its major events, including the Battle of Moscow, the Battle of Stalingrad, the Battle of Kursk, and the Battle of Berlin. In addition to war journalism, his novels (such as The People are Immortal (Народ бессмертен)) were being published in newspapers and he came to be regarded as a legendary war hero. The novel Stalingrad (1950), later renamed For a Just Cause (За правое дело), is based on his own experiences during the siege.
Grossman's descriptions of ethnic cleansing in Ukraine and Poland, and the liberation of the Treblinka and Majdanek extermination camps, were some of the first eyewitness accounts —as early as 1943—of what later became known as the Holocaust. His article The Hell of Treblinka 1944) was disseminated at the Nuremberg War Crimes Tribunal as evidence for the prosecution.
Grossman died of stomach cancer in 1964, not knowing whether his novels would ever be read by the public.
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