Reply to "GNI BOOK CLUB [2]"

Finished reading "THE ZHIVAGO AFFAIR: The Kremlin, the CIA, and the Battle Over a Forbidden Book" by Peter Finn and Petra Couvée.

It deals with the Cold War-era controversy surrounding the novel "Doctor Zhivago" and its author Boris Pasternak.

Deeply and widely researched, it details how the Soviet government under Nikita Khrushchev refused to publish Pasternak's novel, deeming it "anti-Soviet", forcing the author to seek the help of an Italian publisher.

Publication abroad resulted in the hounding and pillorying of Pasternak by the Soviet authorities, the compliant Soviet Writers Union, the state-owned mass media and others who labeled the author a "traitor".

In 1958, one year after "Doctor Zhivago" appeared in print, Boris Pasternak was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature but was prohibited from accepting the prize and royalties accruing from the book's sales.

Naturally, in the midst of the Cold War, the American CIA got into the fray and clandestinely published Russian-language editions of the novel which were then smuggled into the Soviet Union by various means. But, as Finn and Couvée point out, "Pasternak was unhappy about the exploitation of his novel for Cold War propaganda purposes."

I shall soon re-read "Doctor Zhivago with revelations from "The Zhivago Affair" in mind.

The Zhivago Affair: The Kremlin, the CIA, and the Battle Over a Forbidden Book

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