SOLZHENITSYN, Alexander. The Gulag Archipelago. 1918 - 1956. An Experiment in Literary Investigation. London, Collins & Harvill, [1974-1978].
Seven parts in three volumes. Original illustrated boards with illustrated dust-wrappers (volume one price-clipped), the others not; volume one with gist inscriptionon front fly leaf, spines of volume two and three faded (as usual), a good set, rarely seen complete.
First British edition of Solzhenitsyn's epic non-fiction masterpiece. Written between 1958 and 1968 the carefully composed narrative combines historical sources including reports, interviews, statements, diaries, legal documents, and Solzhenitsyn's own experience as a Gulag prisoner. Throughout the writing and preparation of zamisdat publicatins the KGB had repeatedly seized typescripts and raided flats of collaborators. One typist and collaborator of Solzhenitsyn's was found hanged in her flat in 1973. This prompted the author to go ahead with a Russian language publication in the West (Éditions du Seuil, end of December 1973), despite his wish to have it published (even if only illegally) in Russia. In 1974 Solzhenitsyn was deported to West Germany.