December 14th, 2011

Alexander Solzhenitsyn--Nobel Lecture

This speech, to which someone has given the title "Beauty Will Save The World" was prepared over 41 years ago.  It was finally delivered thirty-six years ago, abstracted in a book called The World Treasury Modern Religious Thought twenty-one years ago, which i purchased five years and read for the first time this morning.  I wish i had read it earlier.  Here is a quote (certainly not the best quote) from its conclusion.

"The simple act of an ordinary courageous man is not to take part, not to support lies! Let that come into the world and even reign over it, but not through me. Writers and artists can do more: they can VANQUISH LIES! In the struggle against lies, art has always won and always will. Conspicuously, incontestably for everyone. Lies can stand up against much in the world, but not against art.

Once lies have been dispelled, the repulsive nakedness of violence will be exposed--and hollow violence will collapse.

That, my friends, is why I think we can help the world in its red-hot hour: not by the nay-saying of having no armaments, not by abandoning oneself to the carefree life, but by going into battle!

In Russian, proverbs about TRUTH are favorites. They persistently express the considerable, bitter, grim experience of the people, often astonishingly:


Alexander Solzhenitsyn--Nobel Lecture