The Righteous in the Gulag

The value of moral resistance to Soviet totalitarianism

International Conference
Milan, Italy, 9 - 11 December 2003
Teatro Franco Parenti
Gardens of the Righteous Worldwide Committee
Associazione PierLombardo Culture


Day 1st, December 9th
Morning, 9:00am
Discussant Dario Fertilio

Welcome by the Authorities

Gabriele Nissim -
“No, I will not give you my soul!”

Elena Bonner Sakharova
Andrei Sakharov’s struggle for legality and justice

Coffee break

Vittorio Strada
Completeness of memory and historical conscience. The century of totalitarianism and the metanoia of Vasily Grossman

Sergio Rapetti
The Gulag system: 1918-1991. Jacques Rossi and his extraordinary “recorded memory”


Afternoon, 3:00pm Discussant Marcello Flores

Defending truth

Nikita Struve
Osip and Nadezhda Mandel’shtam: together, at the service of poetry and truth

Irina Sirotinskaya
Responsibility and morality of the word in Varlam Shalamov

Natalia Gorbanevskaya
“Stolen air”. Anna Achmatova’s Requiem and the poetry magazines of the Sixties

Coffee break

Alexandr Daniel’
Literature on trial. Sinjavsky and Daniel: “the defendant pleads not guilty”

Arina Ginzburg
From the White Book on the Sinjavsky-Daniel’ case, to the support for political prisoners and to the Helsinki Movement: Alexandr Ginzburg


In the evening
“Life has fallen, distant flash of lightning…”
Recital by the songwriter and singer Elena Frolova on texts by Achmatova, Mandel’shtam, Shalamov, Barkova: love, poetry and music, despite the Gulag

Day 2nd, December 10th
Morning, 9:00am
Discussant Carla Tonini

Resistance in civil society

Vladimir Tolz
Samizdat free information in the Seventies and Eighties: the “Current events chronicle”, “Bulletin V” and the West

Giovanni Guaita
Resistance on the part of believers: the examples of Pavel Florensky and Alexander Men’

Coffee break

Elena Chukovskaya
Alexandr Solzhenitsyn. From the exposure of censorship to testimony about the “Gulag Archipelago”

Sergei Khodorovich
Resistance among ordinary people and support for prisoners’ families

Slavy Boyanov
Independent thought under totalitarian regimes


Afternoon, 3:00pm Discussant Pietro Kuciukian

Defending human dignity in the Gulag

Sergei Kovalyov
Resistance inside the camps in the Seventies and Eighties: the example of Anatoly Marchenko

Yuri Mal’tsev
The psychiatric repression of the thought: Petro Grigorenko, a rebel of the nomenklatura

iniziocorsivoCoffee break

Armenak Manukyan
The repressions of the Thirties: episodes of resistance of the Armenians

Amatuni Virabyan
The Armenians repatriated after the Second World War and the defence of national identity


Day 3rd, December 11th
Discussant Viktor Zaslavsky

The Gulag and Italy

Elena Dundovich
The Righteous who denounced the Gulag in the West. Some exemplary stories

Pierluigi Battista
Italians who refused to ignore the reality of the Gulag

Coffee break

Francesco M. Cataluccio
Against the removal of the Gulag. The case of Gustav Herling

Didi Gnocchi
Edmondo Peluso, an Italian victim of the Gulag

Francesco Bigazzi
The odyssey of Emilio Guarnaschelli


Afternoon, 3:00pm Discussant Francesca Gori

The Gulag and post-soviet Russia

Viktor Shmyrov
The “Perm-36” lager, a memorial to the Gulag

Arseny Roginsky
Keeping the memory of the Gulag alive in contemporary Russia

Anatoly Razumov
The Leningrad Martyrology: popular remembrance of the victims of the “Great Terror”

Closing debate, 6:00pm

The Righteous in the Gulag: why should we remember them?

Moderator Gabriele Nissim

9 November 2003

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