Fall 1979 • Vol. I No. 4 InterviewOctober 1, 1979 |

An Interview

From the Russian.  This interview was conducted by Janis Sapiets in Vermont on February 3, 1979. Later that month, in two parts, it was broadcast in Russian by the Russian/East European Services of the British Broadcasting Corporation. The first part was published in the previous issue of The Kenyon Review. SAPIETS. Aleksandr Isayevich, as you know, an emigre is often full of bitterness. He's lost the ground from under his feet and lives only in the past. SOLZHENITSYN. Ivan Ivanovich, I am not an émigré. I took.no such spiritual decision as to leave my homeland and start a new life somewhere else. So I have a different outlook. SAPIETS. Yes, but I am talking about emigration in general. It's a social phenomenon with its own---as it believes---historical mission. SOLZHENITSYN. The first wave of emigration did, of course, have a historical mission: to help us preserve a historical memory of the prerevolutionary and revolutionary years at a time when everything

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