Princeton University Scholar and Writer



Interview on GULAG BOSS with Marshall Poe

Gulag Boss, Spanish edition, Alianza Editorial, 2012

GULAG BOSS: A SOVIET MEMOIR (OUP, 2010)


Simon Sebag Montefiore wrote "Gulag Boss is essential reading and I could hardly put it down." The Literary Review, August 2012.

David Priestland, in the Times Literary Supplement, says: "Gulag Boss, written in the late 1990s and translated by Kaple, is one of very few memoirs written by a camp administrator, and gives us a fascinating insight into the mind of a once-loyal Stalinist." TLS, 7 Oct. 2011

"This is a fascinating memoir, presenting for the first time the voice of a "gulag boss." It offers a devastating counterpoint to the existing picture of Stalin's gulag that we have from victims' memoirs. The discovery and superb translation of this memoir by Deborah Kaple represents a major contribution to Gulag studies." -Lynne Viola, author of The Unknown Gulag: The Secret World of Stalin's Special Settlements

"Many memoirs by people who lived under the Stalinist regime in the USSR have appeared, but few give any real sense of how the repressive apparatus functioned. Fyodor Mochulsky's memoir offers the perspective of a Gulag prison camp official who, despite being a committed Communist, was able to sense a disjuncture between his expectations and the terrible reality he confronted. Although Mochulsky's memoir is necessarily selective and was written with the benefit of hindsight, it gives a valuable sense of some of the things he felt and the dilemmas he faced while overseeing Gulag operations. The memoir undoubtedly leaves out the worst aspects of Mochulsky's job, but he does not pretend to have been a hero or a closet dissident. If only inadvertently, his account lays bare the evils of the system he loyally served." -Mark Kramer, director of Cold War Studies, Harvard University

"Gulag Boss provides a unique and fascinating insight into the mind and morality of the men who ran the Soviet concentration camps."--Anne Applebaum, Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Gulag: A History







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A look at China's socialist industrialization program in the 1950s
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