Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn was a writer and historian who was a native of Russia. He spent over a decade in labour camps and in exile for criticizing the Soviet leader Joseph Stalin. In 1970 he was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature.
Aleksandr Isayevich Solzhenitsyn was born in Kislovodsk, Russia, in December 1918. He served with distinction in the Red Army during World War II, but was arrested in February 1945 for criticizing the conduct of the war. Solzhenitsyn was sentenced to an eight year term in a labour camp. Having served his sentence he was exiled to Kazakhstan where he remained until his release in 1956.
On release he was employed as a secondary school teacher. In 1962 he was allowed to publish the novel, One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich in the Soviet Union. He later published novels such as Cancer Ward (1968), August 1914 (1971) and The Gulag Archipelago (1973) in the west.
Solzhenitsyn was expelled from the Soviet Union in 1974. He spent most of the following two decades living and working the United States. He returned to Russia in 1994 following the dissolution of the Soviet Union. He died in Moscow at the age of 89 on August 3rd 2008.
Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn was born in the year 1918 On This Day.