RUSSIA: Ars Gratia Partis

"Generally speaking," said recently purged Soviet writer Mikhail Zoshchenko (TIME, Sept. 2), "it is rather difficult to be an author." In the U.S.S.R. last week it was proving harder than ever.

U.S. writers like Eugene O'Neill, John Steinbeck, J. P. Marquand and John Hersey could afford—as the Moscow Radio charged last week—to "stay out of touch with the life of their people and the problems which moved all freedom-loving humanity," but Soviet writers, warned a Pravda editorial, must dispense with the "nonsensical theory of a postwar breathing space and the right of...

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