Grossman’s “Life and Destiny”

  Grossman’s most brilliant works are none other than “two epic wars” – “For a Just Cause” (completed in 1953) and “Life and Destiny” (completed in 1959). These two works are closely related to his more than 1,000-day front-line experience after the outbreak of the Soviet-German war in 1941. Among them, the latter work has received particular attention.
  ”Life and Destiny” is set in Stalingrad, where the Soviet and German armies fought fiercely, and tells the story of the ups and downs of the Shaposhnikov family and their relatives and friends during the war. The story takes place from September 1942 to February 1943. Grossman first described the brutality of the Nazi extermination camps in Germany and the Soviet Gulag in his long works. Those nightmarish stories are far more The reality of the Sud battlefield is even more creepy. Grossman presents his thoughts on the Russian Revolution in a panorama from the perspective of a Soviet Jew.
  The work was first introduced to Soviet readers in the form of samizdat. Grossman certainly hopes to publish his works through official channels, and he sent the manuscript of “Life and Destiny” to the editorial office of “New World” with liberal tendencies. It was the well-known editor-in-chief Tvaldowski who received him. He was famous in the Soviet Union for publishing author Solzhenitsyn’s “A Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich” in “New World” in early 1960. Literary publishing. However, on December 19, 1960, the editorial office of “New World” gave a final opinion: “Life and Destiny” is an anti-Soviet work and should not be used. Perhaps Grossman overlooked an important detail, that is, “New World” published author Solzhenitsyn’s novel, with the permission of General Secretary Khrushchev beforehand.
  Just when Grossman was stunned, Kozhevnikov, the editor-in-chief of another well-known literary magazine in Moscow, The Flag, took the opportunity to ask Grossman for a manuscript, claiming that the Flag would consider adopting it. But Kozhevnikov was a speculator and whistleblower in the literary publishing world. After he got the manuscript of Life and Destiny, he gave it directly to the KGB. On February 14, 1961, the KGB confiscated the manuscripts and printouts of “Life and Destiny”, and on the 23rd Grossman sent a letter to Khrushchev, asking him to let go of “Life and Destiny”. He defended in the letter: “What I write is the truth, because I love and wish people, I believe in them. I ask for the freedom of my book.” Suslov, secretary of the Central Committee of the CPSU, was ordered to reply to Grossman, He called Grossman to the office and announced in an official tone: “Life and Destiny will not be published in the Soviet Union for two hundred years.” The
  Soviet government refused to publish “Life and Destiny,” and the KGB took away the manuscript , the torment and tearing of Grossman’s soul can be imagined. His wife Olga also persuaded Grossman to give up chasing manuscripts and publishing Life and Destiny, and she even asked her husband to burn all typed manuscripts. Fortunately, Grossman’s friend Ukrainian poet Lipkin kept a typescript of “Life and Destiny” with the help of Soviet physicist Sakharov, poet Okuzava and writer Voinovich Tossed and sent the manuscript away. Finally, in 1980 Switzerland published the Russian edition of Life and Destiny. In the mid-1980s, the former Soviet Union President Mikhail Gorbachev promoted “new thinking” reforms, and many banned literary works were brought to light. In 1988, an abridged version of “Life and Destiny” was published. 24 years after his death. In 1990 Moscow reprinted the full version of the novel.
  In 1964, Grossman suffered from kidney cancer after suffering from “Life and Destiny” and exhaustingly completing his final novel, “Everything Is Flowing.” After his kidney was removed, the disease spread to the lungs. In the last days of Grossman’s life, he was tortured to death by illness. When he was dying, he was delirious and babbled. He told his wife in a brief sober moment that he dreamed that he was arrested and tortured to extract a confession, but he could not remember who he had betrayed…
  The first 30 years of Grossman’s life were generally smooth sailing. He was born in 1905 into a wealthy Jewish family in Berdichev, Ukraine. After graduating from Moscow University’s Department of Chemistry, Grossman taught chemistry at Donetsk University in Ukraine. When he was young, he believed deeply in Marxism and Leninism, and was a Bukharinian socialist. Grossman was the first Soviet writer to expose the persecution of Jews by Nazism. In 1944, his essay “Treblinka Hell” became the court material for the Nuremberg International Trial.