Since 1997, you’ve been coming to BarnesandNoble.com to discuss everything from Stephen King to writing to Harry Potter. You’ve made our site more than a place to discover your next book: you’ve made it a community. But like all things internet, BN.com is growing and changing. We've said goodbye to our community message boards—but that doesn’t mean we won’t still be a place for adventurous readers to connect and discover.

Now, you can explore the most exciting new titles (and remember the classics) at the Barnes & Noble Book Blog. Check out conversations with authors like Jeff VanderMeer and Gary Shteyngart at the B&N Review, and browse write-ups of the best in literary fiction. Come to our Facebook page to weigh in on what it means to be a book nerd. Browse digital deals on the NOOK blog, tweet about books with us,or self-publish your latest novella with NOOK Press. And for those of you looking for support for your NOOK, the NOOK Support Forums will still be here.

We will continue to provide you with books that make you turn pages well past midnight, discover new worlds, and reunite with old friends. And we hope that you’ll continue to tell us how you’re doing, what you’re reading, and what books mean to you.

Reply
Inspired Scribe
IBIS
Posts: 1,735
Registered: ‎11-22-2006
0 Kudos

Re: Questions for Tom Rob Smith

[ Edited ]

Tom_Rob_Smith wrote:

Robert Cullen's book will be fascinating, in its own right, but also as a comparison. When reading the book it was clear to me that I needed to create a fictional detective with a very different predicament. Nesterov is in many ways much more like the real detectives who worked on the case.

I kept the name Andrei just to be clear about which case I was referencing, I don't want any doubt that the real life case had been the start point. I wasn't trying to imply that my Andrei was the same as the real Andrei. They are very different....

Some people have argued that the motivation I concoct for the killer is wildly insane. But I would argue that all serial killer are insane! It strikes me as bizarre to start suggesting that are sensible reasons for killing fifty people and not so sensible reasons!




I vaguely remember seeing a movie some years ago called CITIZEN X which is loosely based on Andrei Chikatilo's story; the movie detectives were portrayed as regular working stiffs similar to your General Nesterov.

In the book, your decision to make the State itself the real source of danger jumped the thrill quotient up a quantum leap...

As for Andrei's motivation, the search for his missing brother, his response to feeling abandoned, his little daughter caught in his cellar... all these touches added humanity to what could have been a cardboard monster.

Whether we need to put a human face to such criminal behavior is another story.

IBIS

Message Edited by IBIS on 06-08-2008 11:01 AM
IBIS

"I am a part of everything that I have read."
Author
TRS_Old
Posts: 107
Registered: ‎05-20-2008
0 Kudos

Re: Questions for Tom Rob Smith



IBIS wrote:

Tom_Rob_Smith wrote:

Robert Cullen's book will be fascinating, in its own right, but also as a comparison. When reading the book it was clear to me that I needed to create a fictional detective with a very different predicament. Nesterov is in many ways much more like the real detectives who worked on the case.

I kept the name Andrei just to be clear about which case I was referencing, I don't want any doubt that the real life case had been the start point. I wasn't trying to imply that my Andrei was the same as the real Andrei. They are very different....

Some people have argued that the motivation I concoct for the killer is wildly insane. But I would argue that all serial killer are insane! It strikes me as bizarre to start suggesting that are sensible reasons for killing fifty people and not so sensible reasons!




I vaguely remember seeing a movie some years ago called CITIZEN X which is loosely based on Andrei Chikatilo's story; the movie detectives were portrayed as regular working stiffs similar to your General Nesterov.

In the book, your decision to make the State itself the real source of danger jumped the thrill quotient up a quantum leap...

As for Andrei's motivation, the search for his missing brother, his response to feeling abandoned, his little daughter caught in his cellar... all these touches added humanity to what could have been a cardboard monster.

Whether we need to put a human face to such criminal behavior is another story.

IBIS

Message Edited by IBIS on 06-08-2008 11:01 AM




Yes, that is the movie - which I haven't seen yet.

You bring up an interesting moral question about depictions of criminality. As it happens criminality does, in my view, often have a human face. For example, the real killer, Andrei Chikatilo, was extremely short sighted (as my killer is). He didn't get glasses until he was a teenager, something like 15 or 16. There's something incredibly sad about a young boy who grows up seeing the world as a blur, squinting, not daring to ask, no one spotting his problem. Seeing these chinks of humanity isn't about qualifying his insanity. It isn't even about trying to understand it. Somewhere their emotional development went catastrophically awry, with tragic consequences for their victims - pin-pointing that moment in a work of fiction felt like a necessary thing to do.

There is a real life time line of the killer on the child44 website....

www.child44book.com

The original music on the website is totally amazing!


Learn more about Child 44.
Frequent Contributor
tgem
Posts: 270
Registered: ‎08-06-2007
0 Kudos

Re: Questions for Tom Rob Smith

IBIS,
 
Thank you for your wonderful post.  I think I can understand now why you use the quote:  "Everything that lives is holy." (William Blake)  It's a very meaningful reminder, coming from you.
 
Bless you,
 
tgem



Tom_Rob_Smith wrote:
When writing about this period, I felt our privileges very strongly. I never really got down. I was often very moved by the way in which personal stories of love managed to fight their way through difficulties. No matter how authoritarian a rule, there's something about love which it just can't defeat. And the State really did try, actively attempting to weaken the bond between families.

IBIS wrote:


Your comment about appreciating our civil liberties resonated with me personally. I escaped from Cambodia during Pol Pot's Khmer Rouge massacres... our family met many strangers who risked their own safety to help us.

Many of your characters moved me because they reminded me of them... both major and minor, motivated by love for each other... willing to risk their lives to help Leo and Raisa catch the murderer. Their simple love for children and their safety overcame their personal fears.... the passengers on the train... the villagers who hid them... the little boy who distracted the hunting dog... the wagon drivers... and, of course, General Nesterov (along with Leo, he is a marvelous creation!)...

Today, as a naturalized citizen, I have the utmost appreciation for our guaranteed civil liberties. Books like Child 44 is a great reminder of how truly blessed we are.

IBIS


Inspired Scribe
IBIS
Posts: 1,735
Registered: ‎11-22-2006
0 Kudos

Re: Questions for Tom Rob Smith



tgem wrote:
IBIS,
 
Thank you for your wonderful post.  I think I can understand now why you use the quote:  "Everything that lives is holy." (William Blake)  It's a very meaningful reminder, coming from you.
 
Bless you,
 
tgem


tgem, thank you... i'm glad you understand.
IBIS
IBIS

"I am a part of everything that I have read."
Inspired Scribe
IBIS
Posts: 1,735
Registered: ‎11-22-2006
0 Kudos

Re: Questions for Tom Rob Smith

[ Edited ]
Hi Mr Smith,
Regarding your comment that criminality has a human face... I share the sentiment. It's a very difficult moral issue... balancing the delicate line between sympathy and clear-sightedness.

I visited the www.child44book.com site... the timeline of Chikatilo's life makes him very very real... the detail of his not having glasses until he was 16... that he was an object of ridicule in school... these humanizing details touches something human in all of us... something that reminds us of how vulnerable we all are...

No matter how much I wish to understand why bad people do the terrible things they do... . why creative writers and musicians create artworks which encourages us to sympathize with the damaged among us...

My young life in Cambodia has taught me that sympathy only goes just so far... and no farther. No matter how sympathetic we make the killers among us, I will always remember that they are exactly that... killers.

IBIS

I agree, the original music on that site telegraphs the mood of your book instantaneously!

Message Edited by IBIS on 06-09-2008 01:17 AM
IBIS

"I am a part of everything that I have read."
Inspired Scribe
IBIS
Posts: 1,735
Registered: ‎11-22-2006
0 Kudos

Re: Questions for Tom Rob Smith

This topic hasn't come up... your thoughts would give us much insight into Child 44. Andrea Chikatilo actually committed his crimes in the 80s... you chose the Stalin-era 50s.  It's a very interesting time period... and it makes absolute sense since you make the State the actual source of danger in the book.
 
Are there particular paranoic symptoms of the era that helped you set the tone and mood for your story? Could you talk a bit more about this period in history that helped you shape Child 44?
 
IBIS
IBIS

"I am a part of everything that I have read."
Author
TRS_Old
Posts: 107
Registered: ‎05-20-2008
0 Kudos

Re: Questions for Tom Rob Smith



tgem wrote:
IBIS,
Thank you for your wonderful post. I think I can understand now why you use the quote: "Everything that lives is holy." (William Blake) It's a very meaningful reminder, coming from you.
Bless you,
tgem



Tom_Rob_Smith wrote:
When writing about this period, I felt our privileges very strongly. I never really got down. I was often very moved by the way in which personal stories of love managed to fight their way through difficulties. No matter how authoritarian a rule, there's something about love which it just can't defeat. And the State really did try, actively attempting to weaken the bond between families.

IBIS wrote:


Your comment about appreciating our civil liberties resonated with me personally. I escaped from Cambodia during Pol Pot's Khmer Rouge massacres... our family met many strangers who risked their own safety to help us.

Many of your characters moved me because they reminded me of them... both major and minor, motivated by love for each other... willing to risk their lives to help Leo and Raisa catch the murderer. Their simple love for children and their safety overcame their personal fears.... the passengers on the train... the villagers who hid them... the little boy who distracted the hunting dog... the wagon drivers... and, of course, General Nesterov (along with Leo, he is a marvelous creation!)...

Today, as a naturalized citizen, I have the utmost appreciation for our guaranteed civil liberties. Books like Child 44 is a great reminder of how truly blessed we are.

IBIS








I agree - a wonderful response, very touching from my point of view.


Learn more about Child 44.
Author
TRS_Old
Posts: 107
Registered: ‎05-20-2008
0 Kudos

Re: Questions for Tom Rob Smith



IBIS wrote:
This topic hasn't come up... your thoughts would give us much insight into Child 44. Andrea Chikatilo actually committed his crimes in the 80s... you chose the Stalin-era 50s. It's a very interesting time period... and it makes absolute sense since you make the State the actual source of danger in the book.
Are there particular paranoic symptoms of the era that helped you set the tone and mood for your story? Could you talk a bit more about this period in history that helped you shape Child 44?
IBIS





I moved the story back in time, as you rightly point out, so that the State would become the primary source of danger in the novel, not the serial killer. I guess I thought it was interesting to flip the serial killer narrative by almost making the serial killer secondary, or rather, reconfiguring the State as a "serial killer".

The Soviet Union in the 1980s was going through a period of liberalization, after having already taken huge steps forward from Stalinism. In a way, the period always felt slightly melancholic to me, the end of era, a system in collapse. I suspect keeping the story in the 1980s would have ended up as a much more slow moving, contemplative narrative.

The 1950s grabbed me, or rather Stalinism grabbed me, because it was so extreme. I say this in my video, which is on the B & N book page, but in thrillers you're always looking to place your characters in danger. Because our lives now are so safe, relatively, that can be a challenge for an author. But in Stalinist Russia, everyone was in danger, all of the time, so the danger doesn't feel constructed, it becomes ordinary - which is fascinating to me. How did people cope with no clear end in sight?

Also, and we've touched on this already, totalitarian regimes strips everyone naked: spiritually, morally, they can't hide. They have to make absolute decisions.

Is that an answer? I'm not sure... maybe you wanted more specific details.


Learn more about Child 44.
Inspired Scribe
IBIS
Posts: 1,735
Registered: ‎11-22-2006
0 Kudos

Re: Questions for Tom Rob Smith



Tom_Rob_Smith wrote:


Is that an answer? I'm not sure... maybe you wanted more specific details.




I hoped my question would draw out specific details from your research of Stalinist Russia... details which made your novel so vivid to me...

On p. 150, for example, you had Leo identify 4:00am as the arresting hour when three low-ranking officers walked into their apartment... they'd be violent without hesitation... they gave off a smell of cigarette smoke and alcohol...alcohol would make them unpredictable, volatile...To survive these next few minutes Leo would have to be cautious, submissive...

The vivid detail of being arrested at 4:00am in the morning rang so true... Was that a factual tactic? Being arrested in your nightclothes... it brings into sharp focus how vulnerable Leo and Raisa were...

It's the accumulation of tiny, but crystal-sharp details like these that makes Child 44 stand out so sharply in my mind...

IBIS
IBIS

"I am a part of everything that I have read."
Inspired Correspondent
Maria_H
Posts: 791
Registered: ‎07-19-2007
0 Kudos

Re: Questions for Tom Rob Smith


Tom_Rob_Smith wrote:

....I say this in my video, which is on the B & N book page....

Right!

And here it is -- just click the play button below to see Tom in action.




Looking for a discussion? Find a Book Club for all your interests!


Author
TRS_Old
Posts: 107
Registered: ‎05-20-2008
0 Kudos

Re: Questions for Tom Rob Smith

That's me!

I had a cold on the day it was filmed...


Learn more about Child 44.
Author
TRS_Old
Posts: 107
Registered: ‎05-20-2008
0 Kudos

Re: Questions for Tom Rob Smith



IBIS wrote:


Tom_Rob_Smith wrote:


Is that an answer? I'm not sure... maybe you wanted more specific details.




I hoped my question would draw out specific details from your research of Stalinist Russia... details which made your novel so vivid to me...

On p. 150, for example, you had Leo identify 4:00am as the arresting hour when three low-ranking officers walked into their apartment... they'd be violent without hesitation... they gave off a smell of cigarette smoke and alcohol...alcohol would make them unpredictable, volatile...To survive these next few minutes Leo would have to be cautious, submissive...

The vivid detail of being arrested at 4:00am in the morning rang so true... Was that a factual tactic? Being arrested in your nightclothes... it brings into sharp focus how vulnerable Leo and Raisa were...

It's the accumulation of tiny, but crystal-sharp details like these that makes Child 44 stand out so sharply in my mind...

IBIS




We were speaking about detail in an early exchange. It is a very tricky balance, too much, the pace slows, too little, the world feels thin and insubstantial, or worse, the reader loses all confidence in the writer as having a handle on the world.

The example you quote is mostly from my imagination. It is true, arrests were carried out very late. But actually, that is true even today - in the UK the police often carry out raids at 5AM because people are unlikely to be able to react, destroy evidence, or whatever. It's more the degree to which these arrests were widespread. And could be carried out without a court order.

There are some specific examples relating to the arrests which are lifted from historical sources. For example, sick people were rolled out of their beds so the officer could search the mattress. The joke that is repeated about the couple relieved when they wake up in the middle of the night to find it's just the building on fire, was a real joke. It's terrifying... to think of people trying to make light of such intense fear.

An excellent book for the nuts and bolts of Stalinism is EVERYDAY STALINISM by Shelia Fitzpatrick, I'm sure you can buy it online at B & N. It's great on the details of this world, if you want more.


Learn more about Child 44.
Author
TRS_Old
Posts: 107
Registered: ‎05-20-2008
0 Kudos

Re: Questions for Tom Rob Smith

www.bn.com
Cover Image
Everyday StalinismSheila Fitzpatrick

Textbook Paperback
BUY THIS ITEM

* $19.95 Online Price
* $17.95 Members Price

Fast & Free Deilvery

Usually ships within 24 hours
BUY IT USED..

Used Copies Available from
our Authorized Sellers.
Average Customer Rating:
Customer Rating for this product is out of 5

* Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
* Pub. Date: March 28, 2000
* ISBN-13: 9780195050011
* Sales Rank: 135404
* 312 pp
*

Synopsis

Here is a pioneering account of everyday life under Stalin, written by a leading authority on modern Russian history. Focusing on the urban population, Fitzpatrick depicts a world of privation, overcrowding, endless lines, and broken homes, in which the regime's promises of future socialist abundance rang hollowly. We read of a government bureaucracy that often turned life into a nightmare, and of how ordinary citizens tried to circumvent it. We also read of the secret police, whose constant surveillance was endemic at this time, and the waves of terror, like the Great Purges of 1937,
which periodically cast society into turmoil.

Biography

Sheila Fitzpatrick teaches modern Russian history at the University of Chicago. A former President of the American Association for the Advancement of Slavic Studies, and a co-editor of The Journal of Modern History, she is also the author of The Russian Revolution, Stalin's Peasants, and many other books and articles about Russia. She lives in Chicago.


Learn more about Child 44.
Inspired Scribe
IBIS
Posts: 1,735
Registered: ‎11-22-2006
0 Kudos

Re: Questions for Tom Rob Smith

[ Edited ]


Tom_Rob_Smith wrote:

Everyday Stalinism by Sheila Fitzpatrick


Thank you for referencing Sheila Fitzpatrick's book...  I remember it ... it was one of several textbooks in my daughter's university class four years ago on Russian history ....
 
I remember her being horror-struck by the failure of collectivization.... ... when Stalin abolished the market, all these horror stories of food and consumer goods shortages like clothing... overcrowding, endless queues for limited resources....
 
I chatted with her about Child 44, and we both pointed out the absurdity in one of the scenes...
 
The scene where Leo and Raisa attempt to visit Ivan, to hide from the authorities, they pretend to wait in a queue... which can last for several hours... a couple of hours to place an order... a couple more hours to pay for the order... and then a couple more to pick up the order....
 
We both enjoyed the absurdity of that scene... if only it wasn't so serious.
 
IBIS


Message Edited by IBIS on 06-10-2008 04:18 PM
IBIS

"I am a part of everything that I have read."
Author
TRS_Old
Posts: 107
Registered: ‎05-20-2008
0 Kudos

Re: Questions for Tom Rob Smith



IBIS wrote:


Tom_Rob_Smith wrote:

Everyday Stalinism by Sheila Fitzpatrick


Thank you for referencing Sheila Fitzpatrick's book... I remember it ... it was one of several textbooks in my daughter's university class four years ago on Russian history ....
I remember her being horror-struck by the failure of collectivization.... ... when Stalin abolished the market, all these horror stories of food and consumer goods shortages like clothing... overcrowding, endless queues for limited resources....
I chatted with her about Child 44, and we both pointed out the absurdity in one of the scenes...
The scene where Leo and Raisa attempt to visit Ivan, to hide from the authorities, they pretend to wait in a queue... which can last for several hours... a couple of hours to place an order... a couple more hours to pay for the order... and then a couple more to pick up the order....
We both enjoyed the absurdity of that scene... if only it wasn't so serious.
IBIS


Message Edited by IBIS on 06-10-2008 04:18 PM




It's a really great book. She's also written a very good book called STALIN'S PEASANTS.

You're absolutely right to point out the absurdity. One of the things I loved about THE GULAG ARCHIPELAGO was how brilliantly he picks apart the insane "reasoning" of the system. For example, the way in which the prisoners were processed was shrouded in secrecy, as if the general population wouldn't notice that millions of people were being arrested and exiled. It just didn't make any sense.


Learn more about Child 44.
Frequent Contributor
tgem
Posts: 270
Registered: ‎08-06-2007
0 Kudos

Re: Questions for Tom Rob Smith

IBIS,
 
Another wonderful post from you.  You're able to express yourself so well.  I agree with you , and have some thoughts I'd like to share, but I'm going to wait until I get relocated.  I'll be getting on a train for at least 30 hours, and then have to get back online.  My laptop is old enough that it doesn't even have an internal card for the Internet, and I keep breaking the external ones.
 
I understand from your posts that you travel quite a bit.  Just getting ready for this trip, I wonder how people do it. I'm excited, but nervous.  I haven't been on a train, long distance, since I was a child.  I'm very drawn to things that are older though.  The pictures I've seen on the Internet of the LA and Portland train stations look gorgeous to me.
 
I remember one time I was staying in a turn-of-the-century boutique hotel in Portland.  My son was working there at the time.  It's right next to an Art Center.  Members of a traveling symphony were staying there, and there was someone practicing cello on my floor.  It was just lovely...
 
Enjoy,
 
tgem
 


IBIS wrote:
Hi Mr Smith,
Regarding your comment that criminality has a human face... I share the sentiment. It's a very difficult moral issue... balancing the delicate line between sympathy and clear-sightedness.

I visited the www.child44book.com site... the timeline of Chikatilo's life makes him very very real... the detail of his not having glasses until he was 16... that he was an object of ridicule in school... these humanizing details touches something human in all of us... something that reminds us of how vulnerable we all are...

No matter how much I wish to understand why bad people do the terrible things they do... . why creative writers and musicians create artworks which encourages us to sympathize with the damaged among us...

My young life in Cambodia has taught me that sympathy only goes just so far... and no farther. No matter how sympathetic we make the killers among us, I will always remember that they are exactly that... killers.

IBIS

I agree, the original music on that site telegraphs the mood of your book instantaneously!

Message Edited by IBIS on 06-09-2008 01:17 AM


Inspired Scribe
IBIS
Posts: 1,735
Registered: ‎11-22-2006
0 Kudos

Re: Questions for Tom Rob Smith



tgem wrote:
IBIS,
I remember one time I was staying in a turn-of-the-century boutique hotel in Portland.  My son was working there at the time.  It's right next to an Art Center.  Members of a traveling symphony were staying there, and there was someone practicing cello on my floor.  It was just lovely...
 
Enjoy,
tgem


tgem, it's funny your mentioning the cello... it's an evocative instrument. As a string instrument afficionado...
Instruments each have their distinctive "voice", just as all writers have their own... 
 
Which reminds me of the movie Amadeus... King Leopold attended a concert of Mozart's latest symphony.. afterwards, Mozart asked him how he liked it. Leopold, after much thinking, said.... "Too... too many notes."
 
Mozart replied..."It had exactly the right amount of notes... no more and no less." 

I thought that was hilarious....
 
Which brings up another question for our author....
 
Mr. Smith... since you're working on your second novel, have you come across this dilemma that seems to haunt some writers of popular fiction... trouble knowing when their novel is "finished"... when to stop. When you are ready to hand it to your editor, knowing you've accomplished what you set out to do....  that it has just the right amount of words... no more and no less?
 
As a musician, I run smack into it all the time... have I practiced this piece enough? ... would the composer be content with my interpretation? Is this as good as I can make it sound?
 
is this something that you struggle with in your writing process?
 
IBIS
IBIS

"I am a part of everything that I have read."
Inspired Scribe
IBIS
Posts: 1,735
Registered: ‎11-22-2006
0 Kudos

Re: Questions for Tom Rob Smith



Tom_Rob_Smith wrote:


You're absolutely right to point out the absurdity. One of the things I loved about THE GULAG ARCHIPELAGO was how brilliantly he picks apart the insane "reasoning" of the system. For example, the way in which the prisoners were processed was shrouded in secrecy, as if the general population wouldn't notice that millions of people were being arrested and exiled. It just didn't make any sense.





This reminds me of a quote from The GULAG ARCHIPELAGO that has stayed with me all these years... it captures the insane logic... In 1944, one investigator, proud of his faultless logic, is quoted... "Investigation and the process are merely juridical figaration, that can't change your destiny, which has been determined before. If it is necessary to shoot you, you'll be shot, even if you're completely innocent."

What does it matter if you're innocent are not.... if we need to shoot you, we'll shoot you....

IBIS
IBIS

"I am a part of everything that I have read."
Author
TRS_Old
Posts: 107
Registered: ‎05-20-2008
0 Kudos

Re: Questions for Tom Rob Smith



IBIS wrote:


tgem wrote:
IBIS,
I remember one time I was staying in a turn-of-the-century boutique hotel in Portland. My son was working there at the time. It's right next to an Art Center. Members of a traveling symphony were staying there, and there was someone practicing cello on my floor. It was just lovely...
Enjoy,
tgem


tgem, it's funny your mentioning the cello... it's an evocative instrument. As a string instrument afficionado...
Instruments each have their distinctive "voice", just as all writers have their own...
Which reminds me of the movie Amadeus... King Leopold attended a concert of Mozart's latest symphony.. afterwards, Mozart asked him how he liked it. Leopold, after much thinking, said.... "Too... too many notes."
Mozart replied..."It had exactly the right amount of notes... no more and no less."

I thought that was hilarious....
Which brings up another question for our author....
Mr. Smith... since you're working on your second novel, have you come across this dilemma that seems to haunt some writers of popular fiction... trouble knowing when their novel is "finished"... when to stop. When you are ready to hand it to your editor, knowing you've accomplished what you set out to do.... that it has just the right amount of words... no more and no less?
As a musician, I run smack into it all the time... have I practiced this piece enough? ... would the composer be content with my interpretation? Is this as good as I can make it sound?
is this something that you struggle with in your writing process?
IBIS





You're right! There is a quote, I think it's Auden, who said something like (I'm paraphrasing, and it might not be Auden...) "you never finish a poem, you just leave it alone". There reaches a point when you have to present it to the world and find out what they make of it. You can tinker forever! I'm a big rewriter, I go over and over - I suppose I know I'm close when I'm only changing words, rather than entire paragraphs.

It's fascinating hearing your comparison to performing music. Just as you hold the composer's expectations in your head, I'm always trying to figure out how the reader will respond.


Learn more about Child 44.
Author
TRS_Old
Posts: 107
Registered: ‎05-20-2008
0 Kudos

Re: Questions for Tom Rob Smith



IBIS wrote:


Tom_Rob_Smith wrote:


You're absolutely right to point out the absurdity. One of the things I loved about THE GULAG ARCHIPELAGO was how brilliantly he picks apart the insane "reasoning" of the system. For example, the way in which the prisoners were processed was shrouded in secrecy, as if the general population wouldn't notice that millions of people were being arrested and exiled. It just didn't make any sense.





This reminds me of a quote from The GULAG ARCHIPELAGO that has stayed with me all these years... it captures the insane logic... In 1944, one investigator, proud of his faultless logic, is quoted... "Investigation and the process are merely juridical figaration, that can't change your destiny, which has been determined before. If it is necessary to shoot you, you'll be shot, even if you're completely innocent."

What does it matter if you're innocent are not.... if we need to shoot you, we'll shoot you....

IBIS





Yes, that's a brilliant example of the inside-out reasoning. I might try and look up some more. I'm sure I've marked a couple in my edition.


Learn more about Child 44.
Users Online
Currently online: 40 members 852 guests
Please welcome our newest community members: