Each year the World Summit of Nobel Peace Laureates organization convenes individuals and organizations which have received the Peace Prize to address critical challenges to peace. It is humbling to serve the Secretariat of this endeavor and be amongst a group of people, many of whom have faced imminent death threats without permitting fear to deter them.
Alexievich was born and bred in the sadness of this place, in what is now Ivano-Frankivsk, Ukraine. No wonder her work is all about it. Her sister was killed and her mother was blinded in the Chernobyl nuclear disaster of 1986. Even before that, Alexievich had already resolved to chronicle the endless misfortunes of her land -- most of them intentionally silenced by the Soviet system.
MOSCOW -- Alexievich, who writes primarily in Russian, is very much a part of this "Russian world" -- that is, in the cultural and civilizational sense, and not in the political or military sense that gained currency during events in Ukraine. This "Russian world," this "Russian civilization" now stands at possibly the most critical juncture of its existence. And it is very timely that a Russian-language Slavic author who writes that this "Russian world" is standing at the threshold of the deepest crisis of its long history has received this award now.