Censorship in Twentieth-Century Literature Criticism: Censorship And The Writer - Essay

Michael Scammell with Joseph Brodsky (interview date 1972)

(Twentieth-Century Literary Criticism)

SOURCE: Scammell, Michael. “Interview with Joseph Brodsky.” In An Embarrassment of Tyrannies: Twenty-Five Years of Index on Censorship, edited by W. L. Webb and Rose Bell, pp. 51-7. London: Victor Gollancz, 1997.

[In the following interview, conducted in 1972, British journalist and translator Scammel speaks with Joseph Brodsky, a Russian poet who was sentenced to hard labor by the Soviet government before being expelled from the Soviet Union in 1972.]

[Scammell]: Joseph, when did you start writing poetry?

[Brodsky]: When I was 18.

Was your work ever published in the Soviet Union?

Yes, when...

(The entire section is 2214 words.)

J. M. Coetzee (essay date 1996)

(Twentieth-Century Literary Criticism)

SOURCE: Coetzee, J. M. “Zbigniew Herbert and the Figure of the Censor.” In Giving Offense: Essays on Censorship, pp. 147-62. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1996.

[In the following essay, Coetzee considers how censorship by the Communist Party has informed and shaped the poetry of Polish writer Zbigniew Herbert.]

Under pressure at the 1934 Soviet Writers' Congress to embrace socialist realism, Isaac Babel announced that he would prefer to practice “the genre of silence.”1 As a form of resistance to ideological prescription, the genre of silence was obdurately followed by a handful of Russia's leading writers. Widely interpreted as a refusal to...

(The entire section is 6231 words.)