A New York Times Notable Book of 2007"A tremendous achievement."--The Sunday Times (London)
The Whisperers is a triumphant act of recovery. In this powerful work of history, Orlando Figes chronicles the private history of family life during the violent and repressive reign of Josef Stalin. Drawing on a vast collection of interviews and archives, The Whisperers re-creates the anguish of family members turned against one another--of the paranoia, alienation, and treachery that poisoned private life in Russia for generations. A panoramic portrait of a society in which everyone spoke in whispers, The Whisperers is "rigorously compassionate. . . . A humbling monument to the evil and endurance of Russia's Soviet past and, implicitly, a guide to its present" (The Economist).
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"Its importance cannot be overestimated. . . . This book should be made compulsory reading in Russia today."--The Times (London)"Extraordinary . . . Victims do not always make good witnesses. But thanks to Figes, these survivors overcame their silence and have lifted their voices above a whisper."--The New York Times Book Review"A profound service . . . Figes redeems the gloom by demonstrating compassion for flawed human beings and revealing compelling examples of moral courage and kindness."--The Christian Science Monitor"An extraordinary work of synthesis and insight . . . an awfully good read . . . Figes is both a prodigious researcher and a gifted writer."--St. Petersburg Times"Lucid, thorough, and essential to understanding Stalinist society . . . an exemplary study in mentalits."--Kirkus Reviews"Extraordinary."--The New Yorker
Orlando Figes is the author of Natasha's Dance: A Cultural History of Russia and A People's Tragedy: The Russian Revolution, 1891–1924, which received the Wolfson Prize, the NCR Book Award, the W. H. Smith Literary Award, the Longman/History Today Book Prize, and the Los Angeles Times Book Prize. He is a professor of history at Birkbeck College, University of London.