Best Selling Books by Svetlana Alexievich

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In Search of the Free Individual

release date: Jan 15, 2018
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Last Witnesses

release date: Jun 16, 2020
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Last Witnesses
"A masterpiece" (The Guardian) from the Nobel Prize-winning writer, an oral history of children's experiences in World War II across Russia NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY THE WASHINGTON POST For more than three decades, Svetlana Alexievich has been the memory and conscience of the twentieth century. When the Swedish Academy awarded her the Nobel Prize, it cited her for inventing "a new kind of literary genre," describing her work as "a history of emotions . . . a history of the soul." Bringing together dozens of voices in her distinctive style, Last Witnesses is Alexievich's collection of the memories of those who were children during World War II. They had sometimes been soldiers as well as witnesses, and their generation grew up with the trauma of the war deeply embedded--a trauma that would change the course of the Russian nation. Collectively, this symphony of children's stories, filled with the everyday details of life in combat, reveals an altogether unprecedented view of the war. Alexievich gives voice to those whose memories have been lost in the official narratives, uncovering a powerful, hidden history from the personal and private experiences of individuals. Translated by the renowned Richard Pevear and Larissa Volokhonsky, Last Witnesses is a powerful and poignant account of the central conflict of the twentieth century, a kaleidoscopic portrait of the human side of war. Praise for Last Witnesses "There is a special sort of clear-eyed humility to [Alexievich's] reporting."--The Guardian "A bracing reminder of the enduring power of the written word to testify to pain like no other medium. . . . Children survive, they grow up, and they do not forget. They are the first and last witnesses."--The New Republic "A profound triumph."--The Big Issue "[Alexievich] excavates and briefly gives prominence to demolished lives and eradicated communities. . . . It is impossible not to turn the page, impossible not to wonder whom we next might meet, impossible not to think differently about children caught in conflict."--The Washington Post

Voices from Chernobyl

release date: Apr 18, 2006
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Voices from Chernobyl
The people of Chernobyl talk about their lives before, during, and after the worst nuclear reactor accident in history, which occurred on April 26, 1986 in the Soviet Union in Chernobyl, a disaster that spread radioactive contamination across much of Europe. Reprint. 25,000 first printing.

The Unwomanly Face of War

release date: Jul 25, 2017
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The Unwomanly Face of War
A long-awaited English translation of the groundbreaking oral history of women in World War II across Europe and Russia—from the winner of the Nobel Prize in Literature NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY The Washington Post • The Guardian • NPR • The Economist • Milwaukee Journal Sentinel • Kirkus Reviews For more than three decades, Svetlana Alexievich has been the memory and conscience of the twentieth century. When the Swedish Academy awarded her the Nobel Prize, it cited her invention of “a new kind of literary genre,” describing her work as “a history of emotions . . . a history of the soul.” In The Unwomanly Face of War, Alexievich chronicles the experiences of the Soviet women who fought on the front lines, on the home front, and in the occupied territories. These women—more than a million in total—were nurses and doctors, pilots, tank drivers, machine-gunners, and snipers. They battled alongside men, and yet, after the victory, their efforts and sacrifices were forgotten. Alexievich traveled thousands of miles and visited more than a hundred towns to record these women’s stories. Together, this symphony of voices reveals a different aspect of the war—the everyday details of life in combat left out of the official histories. Translated by the renowned Richard Pevear and Larissa Volokhonsky, The Unwomanly Face of War is a powerful and poignant account of the central conflict of the twentieth century, a kaleidoscopic portrait of the human side of war. THE WINNER OF THE NOBEL PRIZE IN LITERATURE “for her polyphonic writings, a monument to suffering and courage in our time.” “A landmark.”—Timothy Snyder, author of On Tyranny: Twenty Lessons from the Twentieth Century “An astonishing book, harrowing and life-affirming . . . It deserves the widest possible readership.”—Paula Hawkins, author of The Girl on the Train “Alexievich has gained probably the world’s deepest, most eloquent understanding of the post-Soviet condition. . . . [She] has consistently chronicled that which has been intentionally forgotten.”—Masha Gessen, National Book Award–winning author of The Future Is History

Second-hand Time

release date: Jan 01, 2016
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Second-hand Time
Nobel Prize winner Svetlana Alexievich invents a new genre of narrative non-fiction as she writes the life stories of housewives, artists, party workers, students, soldiers, traders, living through a time of political upheaval -- the fall of the Soviet Union and the two decades that followed it.

Zinky Boys: Soviet Voices from the Afghanistan War

release date: Sep 30, 1992
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Zinky Boys: Soviet Voices from the Afghanistan War
Winner of the Nobel Prize: “For her polyphonic writings, a monument to suffering and courage in our time.” —Swedish Academy, Nobel Prize citation From 1979 to 1989 a million Soviet troops engaged in a devastating war in Afghanistan that claimed 50,000 casualties—and the youth and humanity of many tens of thousands more. Creating controversy and outrage when it was first published in the USSR—it was called by reviewers there a “slanderous piece of fantasy” and part of a “hysterical chorus of malign attacks”—Zinky Boys presents the candid and affecting testimony of the officers and grunts, nurses and prostitutes, mothers, sons, and daughters who describe the war and its lasting effects. What emerges is a story that is shocking in its brutality and revelatory in its similarities to the American experience in Vietnam. The Soviet dead were shipped back in sealed zinc coffins (hence the term “Zinky Boys”), while the state denied the very existence of the conflict. Svetlana Alexievich brings us the truth of the Soviet-Afghan War: the beauty of the country and the savage Army bullying, the killing and the mutilation, the profusion of Western goods, the shame and shattered lives of returned veterans. Zinky Boys offers a unique, harrowing, and unforgettably powerful insight into the realities of war. The introduction has been omitted due to rights issues.

Chernobyl Prayer

release date: Apr 21, 2016
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Chernobyl Prayer
A startling history of the Chernobyl disaster by Svetlana Alexievich, the winner of the Nobel prize in literature 2015 On 26 April 1986, at 1.23am, a series of explosions shook the Chernobyl nuclear reactor. Flames lit up the sky and radiation escaped to contaminate the land and poison the people for years to come. While officials tried to hush up the accident, Svetlana Alexievich spent years collecting testimonies from survivors - clean-up workers, residents, firefighters, resettlers, widows, orphans - crafting their voices into a haunting oral history of fear, anger and uncertainty, but also dark humour and love. A chronicle of the past and a warning for our nuclear future, Chernobyl Prayer shows what it is like to bear witness, and remember in a world that wants you to forget.

Boys in Zinc

release date: Mar 02, 2017
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Boys in Zinc
The haunting history of the Soviet-Afghan War from the winner of the Nobel Prize in Literature 2015 - A new translation based on the updated text - From 1979 to 1989 Soviet troops engaged in a devastating war in Afghanistan that claimed thousands of casualties on both sides. While the Soviet Union talked about a 'peace-keeping' mission, the dead were shipped back in sealed zinc coffins. Boys in Zinc presents the honest testimonies of soldiers, doctors and nurses, mothers, wives and siblings who describe the lasting effects of war. Weaving together their stories, Svetlana Alexievich shows us the truth of the Soviet-Afghan conflict: the killing and the beauty of small everyday moments, the shame of returned veterans, the worries of all those left behind. When it was first published in the USSR in 1991, Boys in Zinc sparked huge controversy for its unflinching, harrowing insight into the realities of war.

Rapazes De Zinco

Rapazes De Zinco
De 1979 a 1989, o exército soviético combateu o Afeganistão, uma guerra que gerou cerca de quinze mil mortos e mais de quatrocentos e cinquenta mil feridos e doentes, atingindo profundamente toda uma geração. Alvo de contestação e polémica na União Soviética por altura da sua publicação, acusado por críticos de ser "uma fantasia carregada de mentiras" e parte de "um coro histérico de ataques perversos", Rapazes de Zinco oferece um testemunho sentido e afetuoso dos soldados, enfermeiras, mães, filhos e filhas que viveram a guerra e os seus efeitos devastadores. Nestas páginas revela-se uma história de brutalidade e mentira, próxima da experiência norte-americana no Vietname, marcada simbolicamente pelos caixões de zinco usados para transportar os mortos para casa, perante uma União Soviética que negava o horror e a destruição causados pela guerra. Recorrendo, como é sua marca, às vozes dos entrevistados, à eloquência e silêncio de um coro polifónico, espelho da realidade, Svetlana Alexievich mostra-nos a verdade acerca da guerra soviética no Afeganistão: a beleza do país contrastando com a violência do exército, a morte, a entrada em força do Ocidente no território e as vidas destruídas dos veteranos de guerra, toldados pela vergonha. Uma visão única, lúcida e poderosa da realidade da guerra.
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