Archive for August 4th, 2011

Solzhenitsyn’s “The New Generation” – for the first time in English

Thursday, August 4th, 2011

Solzhenitsyn at Stanford's Hoover Institution Archives in 1976

When Nobel Prize winning writer Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn ( The Gulag Archipelago, Cancer Ward, The First Circle, and One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich), died in 2008, he left behind uncollected short stories.  One of them, “The New Generation” appears for the first time in English (translated by Kenneth Lantz) on the American Scholar website, “The Scholar’s Connection.” 

The New Generation

They were writing the Strength of Materials exam.

Anatoly Pavlovich Vozdvizhensky, an engineer and associate professor in the Faculty of Civil Engineering, could see that his student Konoplyov’s face was very flushed.  He had broken into a sweat and had missed his turn to come up to the examiner’s desk. Then, with a heavy gait, he approached and quietly asked for a different set of questions. Anatoly Pavlovich gazed at the sweaty face beneath a low forehead and met the desperate, imploring look in his bright eyes—and he gave him some new questions.

Another 90 minutes passed, a few more students had already submitted their answers, and the last four in the class were already sitting before him ready to present their results, but Konoplyov, who had been sitting among them and who now seemed even more flushed, was still not ready.

He sat there until all the others had left. The two were now alone in the lecture hall.

Read the rest here.