Daniel J. Mahoney

Written by Daniel J. Mahoney

Daniel J. Mahoney is the author of Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn: The Ascent From Ideology (2001, 2008 and 2010 for the French and Romanian editions); The Other Solzhenitsyn: Telling the Truth about a Misunderstood Writer and Thinker (2014); and co-editor, with Edward E. Ericson, Jr., of The Solzhenitsyn Reader: New and Essential Writings, 1947-2005 (2006). His latest book, The Humanitarian Subversion of Christianity: Why the Christian Religion is Not the Religion of Humanity, will appear from St. Augustine’s Press in the spring of 2018.

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Macbeth’s self-justifications were feeble—and his conscience devoured him. Yes, even Iago was a little lamb, too. The imagination and the spiritual strength of Shakespeare’s villains stopped short at a dozen corpses. Because they had no ideology.
Ideology—that is what gives villainy its long-sought justification and gives the villain the necessary steadfastness and determination…
Thanks to ideology, the twentieth century was fated to…
Solzhenitsyn 2

The incomparable force of Solzhenitsyn is connected with his person, to what defines his message: the unconditional refusal of the lie. It can happen that one cannot tell the truth, he repeats, but one can always refuse the lie. The Soviet regime appears to him to be perverse as such because it institutionalizes the lie: despotism calls itself liberty, the…