Literature and Russian Politics Essay

Literature and Russian Politics
A look at why literature become such an important force for opposition to the Soviet government in the years 1953-1985.
# 51342 | 2,425 words | 9 sources | APA | 2004 | GB
Published on May 24, 2004 in Literature (Russian) , History (Russian)

$19.95 Buy and instantly download this paper now


This paper examines how literature became an effective source of opposition to the regime in the U.S.S.R. because of a number of complex factors. It explores how the Russian literary tradition of forming a "second government" dates back to the 19th century and provided inspiration to literary dissidents in the Soviet Union. It discusses how the failure of "Socialist Realism" to sufficiently replace genuinely critical literature meant that there was a desire for a form of literature that more accurately reflected the reality of life in the U.S.S.R and how the relaxation of censorship immediately after the fall of Stalin saw literary boundaries pushed through journals and then through unofficial samizdat literature. It also looks at how when the samizdat writers began to be prosecuted the movement became one of dissidents and how these writers who defended their right to free speech against the regime became the start of the democratic movement in the U.S.S.R..

From the Paper:

"Literature on the experiences of Russian people in Soviet camps had been restricted under Stalin's regime. According to Toker, the only accounts of life in the gulags that were permitted were "loyalist" narratives in which the protagonist remained loyal to the regime. It was notable that in his secret speech Kruschev did not denounce camps as such and merely condemned the unjustified persecution and discrediting of loyal communists. Therefore, literature on camps was still restricted under Khruschev. According to Toker, through his secret speech Khruschev had been essentially oppressing a wider truth by revealing a small amount. By showing up some of the previous regimes brutality he meant to imply that any kind of public exposal of the Stalinist regime was superfluous."

Cite this Essay:

APA Format

Literature and Russian Politics (2004, May 24) Retrieved October 25, 2020, from

MLA Format

"Literature and Russian Politics" 24 May 2004. Web. 25 October. 2020. <>