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The Historical-Spiritual Destinies of Russia and the West
“Lee Congdon has succeeded in encapsulating Solzhenitsyn’s intellectual engagement with the twentieth century through an integration of Solzhenitsyn’s corpus into its historical, political, philosophical, and religious context. This is a masterful accomplishment and a major contribution to the field of Solzhenitsyn studies.” —Joseph Pearce, author of Solzhenitsyn: A Soul in Exile
This study of Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn (1918–2008) and his writings focuses on his reflections on the religiopolitical trajectories of Russia and the West, understood as distinct civilizations. What perhaps most sets Russia apart from the West is the Orthodox Christian faith. The mature Solzhenitsyn returned to the Orthodox faith of his childhood while serving an eight-year sentence in the GULag Archipelago. He believed that when men forget God, communism or a similar catastrophe is likely to be their fate. In his examination of the author and his work, Lee Congdon explores the consequences of the atheistic socialism that drove the Russian revolutionary movement.
September 2017 164 pp., 6x9
Lee Congdon is professor emeritus of history at James Madison University and the author of six previous books, including George Kennan: A Writing Life and Seeing Red: Hungarian Intellectuals in Exile and the Challenge of Communism (NIU Press, 2001). He has been a Fulbright research scholar in Budapest and a visiting member of the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton.
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