In Search of the Free Individual
The History of the Russian-Soviet Soul
Translated by Jamey Gambrell
"I love life in its living form, life that’s found on the street, in human conversations, shouts, and moans." So begins this speech delivered in Russian at Cornell University by Svetlana Alexievich, winner of the 2015 Nobel Prize in Literature. In poetic language, Alexievich traces the origins of her deeply affecting blend of journalism, oral history, and creative writing.
Cornell Global Perspectives is an imprint of Cornell University’s Mario Einaudi Center for International Studies. The works examine critical global challenges, often from an interdisciplinary perspective, and are intended for a non-specialist audience. The Distinguished Speaker Series presents edited transcripts of talks delivered at Cornell, both in the original language and in translation.
Born in Ukraine and raised in Belarus, Svetlana Alexievich was trained as a journalist but was soon drawn to literature. She went on to create her own genre, which she has described as "a chorus of individual voices and a collage of everyday details." Her books have been published in more than fifty countries and translated into more than forty languages. Alexievich is the winner of the 2015 Nobel Prize in Literature.