Information about the author:
Stephan Lipke, PhD in Philology, Director, St. Thomas Institute, Friedricha Engelsa, 46-4, 105005 Moscow, Russia.
ORCID ID: https://orcid.org/0000-0001-9072-6945
The article deals with the contacts between Lev Kopelev, Russian specialist in German studies and literary critic, German novelist Heinrich Böll, and Russian writer Alexander Solzhenitsyn. We study the importance of Böll’s works for the perception of Germany in Russia after 1956, and the role of his friendship with Lev Kopelev in the relations between both countries. The article shows how their friendship influenced the way Böll perceived Solzhenitsyn’s works. Böll interprets Solzhenitsyn as a renewer of Socialist realism and as a writer who defends common people against the power of the State. Due to this Böll offers a “progressive” perception of Solzhenitsyn, that goes beyond interpreting him as an anticommunist or a Russian nationalist.