Photo from the Nobel Foundation archive.
Aleksandr Isayevich Solzhenitsyn
The Nobel Prize in Literature 1970
Born: 11 December 1918, Kislovodsk, Russia
Died: 3 August 2008, Troitse-Lykovo, Russia
Residence at the time of the award: USSR
Prize motivation: "for the ethical force with which he has pursued the indispensable traditions of Russian literature."
Prize share: 1/1
A literary work is a reflection of its time and its author's origin and situation. Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn's works grew out of Russia's narrative traditions and reflect Soviet society. His debut, One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich, and several of his later works, focus on life in the Soviet gulag camps. Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn's books often lack an obvious main character, moving instead between different characters at the center of the plot. This reflects a humanist view of the universality of human experience.