Life and Fate Read Along, Part 2 Chapter 52

Life and Fate Read Along, Part 2 Chapter 52
Photo by Martin Adams / Unsplash

This post, covering Part 2, Chapter 52 is part of The Slavic Literature Pod’s chapter a day read along of Vasily Grossman’s Life and Fate. Learn more about our project here.

Things aren’t looking good for Viktor’s Stalin Prize nomination. A rising tide of antisemitism in the Soviet Union threatens his research, his staff, and perhaps even his life.

Viktor learns at the chapter’s onset that Shishakov, the Institute’s newly appointed director, had a few other scientists and staff over his house the previous night. Sokolov, summarizes the meeting to Viktor by saying “I get the feeling, Viktor Pavlovich, that the people who sing your praises so unreservedly are doing you a disservice. It upsets the authorities,” (p. 569). Although Sokolov was still comparatively reserved with his political discussions in Kazan, back in Moscow he appears to have almost no individuality.