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Kolyma Tales

Kolyma Tales It is estimated that some three million people died in the Soviet forced labour camps of Kolyma in the northeastern area of Siberia Shalamov himself spent seventeen years there and in these stories

  • Title: Kolyma Tales
  • Author: Varlam Shalamov
  • ISBN: null
  • Page: 230
  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • It is estimated that some three million people died in the Soviet forced labour camps of Kolyma, in the northeastern area of Siberia Shalamov himself spent seventeen years there, and in these stories he vividly captures the lives of ordinary people caught up in terrible circumstances, whose hopes and plans extended to further than a few hours This new enlarged edition comIt is estimated that some three million people died in the Soviet forced labour camps of Kolyma, in the northeastern area of Siberia Shalamov himself spent seventeen years there, and in these stories he vividly captures the lives of ordinary people caught up in terrible circumstances, whose hopes and plans extended to further than a few hours This new enlarged edition combines two collections previously published in the United States as Kolyma Tales and Graphite.

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      Published :2019-01-21T04:01:00+00:00

    1 thought on “Kolyma Tales

    1. This was a tough read but one I am very glad to have read. This was a collection of stories about the conditions in Soviet forced-labour camps during the Stalinist regime. It definitely filled in many of the knowledge gaps I had of what happened in the Siberian gulags. Only someone who spent time in a Siberian labour camp could ever have come up with such a collection of short stories, stories that capture the abysmal conditions of the camps, describe what the camp does to the human psyche (both [...]

    2. Kolyma Tales was my first used book purchase via . (I feel obligated to honor our benefactor at every turn now. I even touch my breast when I say .)Emerging from a blue period, I truly had no idea how beautiful this harrowing account would be. I don't detect any tension between the sublime and Kolyma. Imre Kertész has taught me well. It is chance, it is human. Survival simply wasn't possible. Those that did emerge, were stripped of something. Kolyma is a protean creation: it is a novel, a colle [...]

    3. "La nostra epoca è riuscita a far dimenticare all'uomo che è un essere umano"Salamov ci racconta quello che ha vissuto nei 17 anni trascorsi ai lavori forzati nell'inferno della Kolyma, ossia la Siberia orientale. Un luogo inospitale dove d'inverno si raggiungono i sessanta gradi sotto zero. Conosciamo così, tramite i suoi occhi, uno dei più terribili orrori dello scorso secolo: i campi di concentramento sovietici, organizzati da Stalin, dove tra gli anni trenta e cinquanta persero la vita i [...]

    4. I’ve written before about the idea of an ‘irrational attachment to life,’ which means that no matter how awful, how painful and degrading existence is one cannot forsake it. Not only that but, with a miser’s spirit, one actively clings to it. Of course it is not true of all – otherwise there would never be any suicide – but it is certainly true of many, including me. I had a very difficult childhood, and I would fantasise a lot about getting away, but at no point did I ever not want [...]

    5. Powerful, unsettling, triumphant. The best of the Gulag literature--- darker and more precise even than "Ivan Denisovich". Tales of survival, violence, hope, revolt, resistance, love, and death there in the world of the Gulag. Sharp, concise, etched in ice and steel, and with a deep sense of human worth and the human heart. You can't do 20th-c. Russian lit without reading this book. Yes, Solzhenitsyn--- yes: read "First Circle" and "Ivan Denisovich". But read this. Just go get a copy. Shalamov's [...]

    6. stunning book about a convicts 17 years in a Siberian death camp. The author who was In the camp writes some short stories of his time there. Think a day in the life of Ivan denisovic x 100 times worse. In fact Solzhenitsyn held shalamov in very high regard. This book is one of the biggest magnifying glasses into the human psyche that I have ever read. Some incredible truths in this book that feel so out of place in normal society. Some of the most interesting short stories were: shock therapy, [...]

    7. Ο Βαρλαάμ Σαλάμοφ βίωσε, ως αυτόπτης μάρτυρας, τη ζοφερή αιχμαλωσία στα στρατόπεδα εργασίας της Κολιμά. Στο βιβλίο του παρουσιάζει ωμά, χωρίς καμία ωραιοποίηση, τη ζωή-τραγωδία των άτυχων αντιφρονούντων. Πρόκειται ουσιαστικά για ένα χρονικογράφημα του θανάτου, μια κραυγή [...]

    8. Disturbing. In some ways, this book is actually better than Solzhenitsyn's stuff. Shalamov writes such short, concise stories that carry so much emotional punch. There is even one story that is only one paragraph long that is more disturbing than an entire novel. I love Shalamov, especially for his aesthetics.

    9. I dare you to find a literary genre more depressing than prison literature – go on, think about it for a bit, I'll wait. Kolyma Tales is a collection of short stories set in the various mines, dormitories, and work camps that made up the vast Siberian "human sewage disposal system" that Alexander Solzhenitsyn so famously chronicled in The Gulag Archipelago. Based on an unimaginable seventeen years of the author's own personal experience with the Gulag system, this is an unforgettably bleak loo [...]

    10. Rad je pitanje časti i slave, pitanje samopregora i herojstva."Hapšenja tridesetih godina bila su hapšenja slučajnih ljudi. Oni su bili žrtve lažne i strašne teorije o rasplamsavanju klasne borbe naporedo sa jačanjem socijalizma. Profesori, partijski radnici, vojna lica, inžinjeri, seljaci, radnici koji su u to vreme dupke napunili zatvore, nisu imali ama baš ništa određeno, osim, možda, ličnog poštenja, naivnosti, šta li - jednom reči, onih osobina koje su pre olakšavale nego [...]

    11. These short stories are the best GULag literature you will ever read. They put "Ivan Denisovich" in context, and are far more depressing and terrifying. The detachment the reader senses in the narrator is a bit disconcerting. He does not use wild language, however deserved it was, to describe suffering; in fact, it appears wildly understated. He is far more matter of fact than he probably had the right to be.The short stories allow Shalamov to explore many different aspects of the camp environme [...]

    12. Stark, brutal miniatures written by a man who spent 17 years (!) in the settings and conditions described here so bluntly and painfully. The cruelty and monotony of life in the Kolyma labor camps are enough to elevate the most mundane items (a can of condensed milk, a child's watercolor paintings) to the level of the miraculous; anything that wards off hunger or reminds the condemned of a brighter world beyond their present circumstances is an event to be cherished. Some of these tales were so d [...]

    13. Every now and then you read one of those books describing tough circumstances where the reader is almost inevitably forced to think "what would I do in this situation?" Kolyma Tales is most definitely one of those. When you're thinking of Russian prison literature, most people think of Solzhenitsyn. For my money, Shalamov was as good a literary craftsman, but rather than trying to impose an ideology-- which in Solzhenitsyn's case, was a rather nasty Orthodox conservatism-- he seemed more content [...]

    14. To quote Mr. Rochester, 'How tenacious we are of life.' Here is every trick in the book to hold onto life while being starved, frozen, and worked to death. Yes, it was bleak, but there was also a point where I really saw the wonder of this tenacity. Bread can be a squalid affair but it keeps us in life. History is ugly, especially for those who see its face close up rather than from a long look back.

    15. It's remarkable this book isn't better known and more widely read. Connects with you on a visceral level and instructs about life in the Gulag in a way Gulag Archipelago does not.

    16. Between 1929 and 1953, Varlam Shalamov spent 20 years in Soviet labour camps as a dissident. 16 of those in Kolyma, a region in the most distant part of Siberia that at the time was essentially a prison the size of a large country, half a world away from anything. When he was released, he started writing about it; short stories based on his and others' experiences. Stories of what it's like to survive for decades in an environment where everything is essentially trying to kill you, by violence o [...]

    17. Quando si inizia una raccolta di questo genere si sa già a cosa si va incontro. Forse, poichè piu' lontano temporalmente rispetto all'olocausto, si poteva pensare ad un racconto piu' lirico, morale, di fatiche ma non di disprezzo. Purtroppo qui Salamov mi contraddice e mostra racconti di ignoranza, abbruttimenti, violenza. Non mi capacito della fortuna di non aver mai conosciuto vite simili, o di non avere mai vissuto in tempi e soprattutto luoghi cosi' nefasti. Non so come si possa tornare vi [...]

    18. Varlam Shalamov draws from firsthand experience in his depictions of suffering in his work. Unlike Primo Levi, for example, Shalamov chose not to present this suffering in the form of a nonfiction memoir. Instead, like Tim O’Brien and Tadeusz Borowski, he has fictionalized his experiences. I suspect Shalamov shared O’Brien’s belief that fiction can be just as “true” as nonfiction as long as the writer is able to accurately capture the physical details and emotions of the real-life expe [...]

    19. Extraordinario. El tipo de libro que se queda con uno para siempre. El horror del gulag descrito en relatos breves, de frases cortas y secas (recuerda a Chejov), sin alardes de heroísmo ni sermones edificantes. Son anécdotas, objetos, personajes que entran y salen en lapsos breves de un continuo que en su caso duró diecisiete años. No entiende uno cómo fue que Shalamov sobrevivió a esto que cuenta, y, sobre todo, en qué espacio íntimo consiguió resguardar la sensibilidad y entereza que [...]

    20. Qualcosa di più di un semplice libro-un'avventura dello spirito. In una lunghissima sequenza di racconti,l'autore ci accompagna in quell'orrore senza fine che fu la Siberia dei Lager. Non è un libro facile nè leggero, perchè non ambisce ad intrattenere: suo unico obiettivo è esorcizzare la malvagità umana, che alla Kolyma negli anni trenta ha trovato la sua massima espressione, nel solo modo possibile, il ricordo. In un'epoca di facili revisionismi, in cui da ogni parte si cerca di inquina [...]

    21. A monument of human endurance and soul in the face of absolute evil, Shalamov's book is a testament of what makes one human. The Gulag, one of the many plagues of the 20th century, a black hole into which people disappear never to come out again - and even if they did, they were but a fraction of their old selves, provides the back drop for this heartbreaking journey of death into life. Apart from providing us with an irrefutable historical document, Shalamov proves to be one of the true masters [...]

    22. Man, I need to take a break from the Gulag and the Holocaust. Maybe some post-apocalyptic fiction to cheer me up?

    23. Tutti i sentimenti umani - l’amore, l’amicizia, l’invidia, l’umanità, la carità, il desiderio di gloria, l’onestà - li avevamo persi insieme alla carne di cui il lungo periodo di fame ci aveva privati. Nell’insignificante strato muscolare che ancora ricopriva le nostre ossa, che ancora ci dava la possibilità di mangiare, di muoverci e respirare e persino di segare tronchi e ammucchiare con una vanga pietre e sabbia nelle carriole, e persino di trascinare quelle carriole lungo la [...]

    24. Though the Soviet Gulag extended across the entire continent, arguably the worst camps were in the Russian Far East, and particularly the gold fields of the Kolyma River basin.The port city of Magadan was the gateway to Kolyma, with Vladivostok and other ports as way stations.I visited Magadan, Vladivostok, Vanino, Khabarovsk, Komsomolsk-on-Amur and other cities of the Russian Far East in the early 1990s when they were first opened to Western businessmen.Our Russian guides showed us the apartmen [...]

    25. This was pretty brilliant right here. All the goodness of The Gulag Archipelago but about 7,000 pages shorter.--- 2008-10-23. I still don't want to buy Anne Applebaum's big book of misery, especially after The Years of Extermination (another totalitarian camp-oriented Pulitzer winner of late) left me feeling not so much educated, or entertained, but more like the contemplative minutes after one realizes the TaB you just pulled warm dregs from had been serving as an ashtray for several hours. pi [...]

    26. Easily among the best short stories I have ever read. 'Kolyma Tales' and 'Gulag Archipelago' go together like two halves to a whole.Shalamov spares nothing and provides it all with the classic Russian stoicism. His writing style is bare but fillingand he never forces a message or drives a point.The brutality in some of these stories leaves writers like Chuck Palahniuk, Cormac McCarthy, Hubert Selby Jr. and Donald Ray Pollack in the dust. There is just no comparison.There are a few duds, and ther [...]

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