With all the mess here I have completely neglected to contemplate something everybody in our circles is talking about: the death of Alexander Solzhenitsyn. Yet he has been decisive for what I am. He opened my eyes when I was fourteen and made me a thinking individual. My parents were not directly dissidents, but as every intellectual in the former
I translated a spiteful article from a Swedish Communist newspaper and typed it with five carbon copies to circulate among friends.
During the year when Solzhenitsyn lived outside
But it does not matter. These days, when every newspaper and news agency carries obituaries and comments, I cannot help recalling the fourteen-year-old who sat as if enchanted, reading a ragged carbon copy of First Circle. It started me thinking. It has finally brought be to