“How do you tell a communist? Well, it’s someone who reads Marx and Lenin. And how do you tell an anti-Communist? It’s someone who understands Marx and Lenin.”
The following paper analyses a short story named “New Generation” written by Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn and published in 2011 in the context of Basic Philosophical and Religious Questions BPRQs approach. Before comprehending the underlying standpoint of the writer regarding the universe it is imperative to have a glimpse of its content briefly. The story sets in the era of 1920s to early years of 1930s and elaborates the analogous life experiences of leading disposition: Anatoly Pavlovich Vozdvizhensky which is a professor as well as an engineer at Rostov University. Evidently, Vozdvizhensky passes a working-class student Lyoshka Konoplyov regardless of his low obtained marking according to the state’s policy to observe affirmative actions toward working-class students. At a point in the story, a speaker in a rally affirms to the students that they are a new generation and will one day pilot the global communist revolution. The story ambiguously ends when after some years professor gets caught by special police GPU and meets Konoplyov there. At this stage, Konoplyov tries to give favour to his teacher.
In the light of the text of short story it is definite that Solzhenitsyn opposes the concept of the oligarchy that somehow has enveloped the democratic perception of new Russia; alongside he also resists the idea of Soviet communism. Through his characters, he attempts to assert the significance of moderate and self-criticism based patriotism, and by doing this, he denies any extremism-based nationalism. Through “New Generation” author depicts the catastrophe of Russian microcosm. The story tells that to offer favour and an easy escape to his professor; Konoplyov manipulates his subs and says that “either a bullet in the back of the neck or a term in the camps.” (Solzhenitsyn, 9) Solzhenitsyn develops a point that universe has an altering nature and therefore it is not possible to predict it. The positions and authorities changed from one character to other; once it was Vozdvizhensky who assisted his student and now Konoplyov gets the power to ease the troubles of his former professor.
According to Solzhenitsyn people sometimes left with no option except being maneuvered by the rules and regulations developed and implemented by their higher authorities. Konoplyov “dragged upside and own” (Solzhenitsyn, 2) in the field of engineering forcefully; regardless lack of his interest. And then Vozdvizhensky suppressed by policies to pass the working class student. Afterward, the subordinates of Konoplyov in GPU were enforced to obey his commands in releasing Vozdvizhensky. Consequently, all the revolutionary and communist chaoses make the professor to advise his daughter to follow a path that features less resistance and difficulties and recommends her to get connected with a youth organisation of communism. In this way, he fails all of his students, daughter and fellow engineers as well as himself.
By analysing the philosophical and ethical and in this case the political and authoritative point of view of the author; it becomes evident that people cannot live a happy life with a lighter conscience in the presence of undue pressure. Sometimes, unwarranted policies and regulations compel a person to go against his conscience that in turn tarnishes the soul and make him restless form inside. Take the instance of professor that despite being released he “broke into sobs.” (Solzhenitsyn, 10) Moreover, it can be concluded from the perspective of Solzhenitsyn that communism devises unhealthy and morbid ways of life and communism is chiefly responsible for the bitterness people confronted in the history.
Solzhenit︠s︡yn, Aleksandr Isaevich. Apricot Jam And Other Stories. Canongate, 2012.