Other formats

    Adobe Portable Document Format file (facsimile images)   TEI XML file   ePub eBook file  


    mail icontwitter iconBlogspot iconrss icon

Salient: Victoria University Students' Newspaper. Vol. 24, No. 7. 1961.

"I Have My Own Philosophy..."

"I Have My Own Philosophy..."

Outwardly, Stanislav Zhukov was a normal hard-working student. His teachers at the Moscow Economical-Statistical Institute regarded him highly, he got excellent grades, and he headed a student "political economy" study group.

Inwardly, however, Zhukov was far from normal—by Soviet standards. He was becoming more and more interested in "foreign" magazines and fashions. He grew a beard. And he was developing his own—and highly personal—philosophy.

Suddenly Zhukov was arrested, and a student meeting hearing his case expelled him from Komsomol and the Institute. The offllcal reason: "buying things foreign from foreigners." But perhaps the more accurate reason, put forward by a girl who was Zhukov's fellow student: "Isn't it clear that the point at issue is the man's convictions, his Weltanschauung?"

His convictions. In his own words, were these:

"I have my own philosophy ... You say that man lives for a great cause. Rubbish! Man just lives. He was born and he lives. He is guided by nothing else but instinct. The main thing is to achieve harmony with oneself; as for those around me, why is that my business? I am guided by the aphorism, "Don't worm your way Into someone else's life: either you dirty it or you get yourself dirty' ... The study of social-economic disciplines does not Impose any moral obligation on me." (Komsomolskaya Pravda, March 24, 1961.)

This is clearly not the kind of philosophy that sits well with the regime. It is reasonable to suppose that it was because of this—not because of his "buying things foreign"—that Zhukov fell from grace. And, judging from the Soviet press, it is probable that others like him have been discredited for the same reason.