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Was Shalamov right?

Szuchow

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Varlam Shalamov (author of Kolyma Tales and GULag survivor) wrote that There is a much that a man should not see, should not know, and if he should see it, it is better for him to die. Was he right? Wrong? Or it entirely depend on person and circumstances of said person life?
 

GenesisNemesis

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I would say it depends on the person's life. There are plenty of Holocaust survivors who went through absolute hell, and still live fulfilling lives, for example. For me personally, I'm not sure what would cause me to break, but it would have to be something that would cause even more severe trauma than what I've already experienced in life.
 

T.G.G. Moogly

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Varlam Shalamov (author of Kolyma Tales and GULag survivor) wrote that There is a much that a man should not see, should not know, and if he should see it, it is better for him to die. Was he right? Wrong? Or it entirely depend on person and circumstances of said person life?

He was wrong. Sand is not for burying one's head.
 

WAB

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Varlam Shalamov (author of Kolyma Tales and GULag survivor) wrote that There is a much that a man should not see, should not know, and if he should see it, it is better for him to die. Was he right? Wrong? Or it entirely depend on person and circumstances of said person life?

He was wrong. Sand is not for burying one's head.

AAAAAaaaaaaaaaAND the award for Most Insensitive Things People Say That, However True, Should Probably Remain In One's Noodle goes to...!!!
 

jab

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Varlam Shalamov (author of Kolyma Tales and GULag survivor) wrote that There is a much that a man should not see, should not know, and if he should see it, it is better for him to die. Was he right? Wrong? Or it entirely depend on person and circumstances of said person life?

Thomas Gray wrote something similar in the 1700s:
To each his suff'rings: all are men,
Condemn'd alike to groan,
The tender for another's pain;
Th' unfeeling for his own.
Yet ah! why should they know their fate?
Since sorrow never comes too late,
And happiness too swiftly flies.
Thought would destroy their paradise.
No more; where ignorance is bliss,
'Tis folly to be wise.

And T. S Eliot, in the first half of the 1900s, thus:
After such knowledge, what forgiveness? Think now
History has many cunning passages, contrived corridors
And issues, deceives with whispering ambitions,
Guides us by vanities.

I am undecided, I waver.
 
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