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READER Õ DOC The Zhivago affair FREE µ Drawing on newly declassified government files this is the dramatic story of how a forbidden book in the Soviet Union became a secret CIA weapon in the ideological battle between East and West In May 1956 an Italian publishing scout took a train to a village just outside Moscow to visit Russia’s greatesDrawing on newly declassified government files this is the dramatic story of how a forbidden book in the Soviet Union became a secret CIA weapon in the ideological battle between East and West In May 1956 an Italian publishing scout took a train to a village just outside Moscow to visit Russia’s greatest living poet Boris Pasternak He left carrying the original manuscript of Pasternak’s first and only novel entrusted to him with these words “This is Doctor Zhivago May it make its way around the world” Pasternak believed his novel was unlikely ever to be published in the Soviet Union where th “You are herby invited to my execution” Last year I read Pasternak’s masterpiece “Doctor Zhivago” and fell in love with this amazing epic and heartbreaking novel While I was reading it I did some cursory research about it because I am a curious person by nature and I love learning about the context in which great books were written What I found looking up “Doctor Zhivago” was intriguing and almost shocking I knew there was heavy censorship of publication during the Soviet regime and I knew about Stalin’s Purge but the convoluted story about the manuscript secreted out of the Soviet Union and subseuently used as a tool of propaganda and blackmail was obviously worthy of its own book And true to their nature as bookworms a few of my GR friends eagerly recommended I get my hands on “The Zhivago Affair” the very book that looked into the history of the publication of Pasternak’s only novel and the repercussion his book had on the USSR and the world in general big thank you to all who recommended it especially Antigone and to my mom in law who put a copy in my Christmas stocking “The Zhivago Affair” almost reads like a spypolitical thriller but about books which I have to admit is a pretty cool and compulsively readable combination It is also a story about the battle for artistic freedom and the refusal to back down even under the most terrifying of pressures – that of a government that’s not afraid to shoot its writers 1500 in the head for writing things it doesn’t agree withOn top of the fascinating Cold War story I was very interested in learning about Pasternak’s life and he various tidbits of it that fuelled his inspiration for “Doctor Zhivago” there is even autobiographical elements weaved in Yuri’s story than I had guessed When I reread Yuri’s tragic story I will be seeing it in a different light Reading “Doctor Zhivago” it felt fairly obvious to me that the character of Yuri was often used as a mouthpiece for Pasternak’s opinions about the importance of art and the way his country had damaged that crucial aspect of its culture His feelings about the new regime were ambiguous because some aspects of it captured his imagination and gave him hope but the fallout soon tainted his idealism Pasternak’s nomination and eventual awarding of the Nobel Prize for literature – for a book that was perceived as a betrayal by the Soviet authorities could simply not be allowed and it broke my heart to read that the threat of never being allowed back into the country he still loved despite all the suffering and horrors he had witnessed did the trick and he turned the medal down What a cruel blackmail what an inhuman way to silence a person The smear campaigns he had to endure the public humiliations of having his honorifics taken away his loved one constantly followed and threatened It was often heartbreaking and infuriating to read about After reading a lot of Russian literature last year and uite a few non fiction books about the country’s history and politics when I read something like this book it’s hard for me not to shake my head and think “Only in Russia” – though I am fairly certain that other countries with a state controlled publication industry have similar stories The story of this book is a testament to the power of literature and the way some people fear what it might inspire others to think and do and how far some people are willing to go to stop that As often happens reading one book makes me want to read a bunch and I will now be on the lookout for collections of Pasternak’s poetry If you enjoyed this or Pasternak’s work I would also recommend checking out John Crowley’s “The Translator” about an exiled Russian poet – and obviously strongly inspired by Pasternak and references him often3 and a half stars because as interesting as the subject matter is the delivery is really uite dry and while some sections are very detailed others feel like they were rushed through which was frustrating because I definitely wanted details about the strange and convoluted journey of this amazing book

READER Û The Zhivago affair ☆ Peter Finn

s funeral in 1960 was attended by thousands of admirers who defied their government to bid him farewell The example he set launched the great tradition of the writer dissident in the Soviet Union  In The Zhivago Affair Peter Finn and Petra Couvée bring us intimately close to this charming passionate and complex artist First to obtain CIA files providing concrete proof of the agency’s involvement the authors give us a literary thriller that takes us back to a fascinating period of the Cold War to a time when literature had the power to stir the world With 8 pages of black and white illustrations This is an enlightening account of the life of Boris Pasternak and his defense of literary truth It is also a story of espionage and the CIA's use of the book Dr Zhivago as a weapon during the cold war It is a good read in spite of all those difficult Russian names

Peter Finn ☆ The Zhivago affair EPUB

The Zhivago affairE authorities regarded it as an irredeemable assault on the 1917 Revolution But he thought it stood a chance in the West and indeed beginning in Italy Doctor Zhivago was widely published in translation throughout the world From there the life of this extraordinary book entered the realm of the spy novel The CIA which recognized that the Cold War was above all an ideological battle published a Russian language edition of Doctor Zhivago and smuggled it into the Soviet Union Copies were devoured in Moscow and Leningrad sold on the black market and passed surreptitiously from friend to friend Pasternak view spoiler Bettie's Books hide spoiler