Thursday, June 9, 2011

Freedom and GoodReads

I have been involved in some discussions lately on Goodreads.  A very fun place on the Internet for book-lovers - I highly recommend it!  I was participating in a review of a and older Russian novel written during the early Soviet years.  The author, Bulgakov, was sometimes subtle, other times not so subtle in his...well...rebellion.  I found that Stalin liked his plays so never killed him (as he did so many others). 

So this writer, like so many, was always chasing truth as an individual.  The thought of writing to conform is distasteful to writers.  If they are not repulsed by this idea - they would at least see it as a pointless venture.  Like a macro-economics student being asked to draw 100 graphs...based on the premise of 'all things being equal". (okay, still a little bitter about that ;-)

Anyhow, I am thinking a lot of writers through history...you know, just guys and gals seeking truth in story.  They wrote in their times, be it the French or American revolution.  The Soviet or Post-Soviet period.  Pre-Mao, Post-Mao.  Every little or large country, any time and place.  Any cultural or market pressures demanding conformity.  Any government. 

They wrote in freedom.  If they had to veil truth or not...it was always there.  If it wasn't there would be no reason to write.  They would simply have set their pens down.  Writers....are free.   Maybe that's why so many do such good work in prison.  Freedom plus freedom from distraction. ;-)  Picture Bunyan in his damp little stone cell for years...blissfully completing his allegorical masterpiece.