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(en) Russia: Obituary - Aleksandr Zinovyev

Date Mon, 22 May 2006 12:27:46 +0200 (CEST)

In memory of Aleksandr Zinovyev (written for Avtonom #27)
29th of October 1922 - 11th of May 2006
* * * * *
Aleksandr Zinovyev has passed. It is not difficult to define his lifework
- a philosopher, an author, a sociologist and a thinker. It is more
difficult to define his positions. Dissidents considered him as an agent
of special services, services considered him as a dissident. Liberals
quoted and quote "The Yawning Heights" and "Homo Sovieticus" in ecstacy,
while silent on "Kasastroyka" and "Global small human", whereas patriots
refer to two latter works with a rapture but remember two first only
through clenched teeth.

"I am a sovereign country", "I am not a victim of Soviet system, but
Soviet system is my victim, as it suffered more because of me than I
suffered for it" - such declarations were most typical for this extremely
non-party, strange and uncompromising man.

Witty and ruthless analyst of both Soviet totalitarism and bourgeois West,
Zinovev was always an extraordinaly radical and original, always provoked
a reader to self-dependent thinking. In one of his interviews, Zinovyev
declared himself as a "committed anarchist" and "romantical communist",
which is why he always exposed foulness of "real communism". Books of
Zinovyev do not zombify, but help to re-program human consciousness.

His fortune was fantastic - in his youth (1939) he was arrested for a
public speech against Stalin, but he succesfully escaped and went
underground, enlisted with a false identity and became a war hero as a
fighter pilot, due to which he was amnestied and soon advanced to be head
of chair of Logics in Moscow State University. He became a world famous
scientist, but in 1970's
took an open stance against Soviet system, was deported, given amnesty
during Perestroika, he returned to country after Perestroika, published
dozens of books with apocalyptic expectations and impassionated hatred of
both capitalism and state socialism, two systems which are equally
disgusting and unhuman. It makes no sense attempting to summarize all
ideas and works of Zinovyev here. Instead, it makes sense to read him, and
read aloud to everybody, who desire to understand something in our
difficult and frightful world!

Pyotr Ryabov

[Ed. ntoe: "Avtonom" is a journal of the Russian anarcho-communist
organization "Autonomous Action"]
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