Communism in USSR : 1917 to 1991. It’s a long time for no-freedom! In these times, a single sentence could send you in Siberia for decades!

Many artists ran away, or became dissidents. There’s a wiki about them :

Where I found that their possible paths were : “Exile, the mental hospital, or the labor camp”.

One safer way to resist, used by the people, was jokes and sarcasms. There are entire books of these! Talking, with persons well known, in kitchens, was the only way to express…

Today let’s talk about one Russian author : Pasternak, who, like Shostakovich, stayed in the country. Many others had to run away (Prokofiev, though he returned to Russia, Stravinsky, Nabokov).

There’s a study to make : How to stay under terrible political pressure and survive?

  • Offer nothing to grip. Pasternak translated classical authors in Russian for years.
  • Show your disagreement, but not enough to get shot.
  • Disappear into nothingness, get yourself unnoticed.
  • Hide.
  • Get so famous that you become almost untouchable. Then you can act strongly… or more risky.

Pasternak wrote Doctor Zhivago and got it published in Italy (after USSR rejection), and got the Nobel Prize. He had to reject it but the international impact was huge…

I’m interested by this attitude, between escape/evasion and staying/death.

How to stand up, dangerous maybe but not enough to get killed. How to resist invisibly. How to have an impact, without getting arrested for it?

Thanks for reading!



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