Imperium – Ryszard Kapuscinski

Reading can be a solitary journey and of course, that provides a lot of pleasure. But as I started reading more Non Fiction, I missed having conversations about the books. So, I started a Non Fiction book club and we just read and discussed our first book, Imperium.
It is always heartening to see a project come to life. I didn’t think anyone would be interested in this one. And I was so grateful to my three other fellow club members who attended our first meeting (one even dialed in via Skype from Paris!). The other club members also shared a lot of fascinating perspectives throughout the month as we read this book. Some disagreed and this added spark to the dialogue.

There is indeed something very special about sharing your love for reading with other human beings. Add to that the fact that you shared the experience of reading a highly unusual book.

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SLOW READ FOR X – MAY 2018
IMPERIUM – RYSZARD KAPUSCINSKI
Translated from Polish by Klara Glowczewska
Travelogue of the Soviet Union as it fell.

CLUB QUOTES
‘I liked it.’
‘It moves between years.’
‘It gave me a vivid impression of these distant places – Yerevan, Baku…’
‘His ability to draw macro trends into his writing.’
‘His metaphors.’
‘At times, it was like reading fiction.’
‘There aren’t many references, but the quotes (sometimes from memory) led me to other interesting writing.’

QUESTIONS
Cotton growing Uzbekistan
Languages of USSR
Armenian Genocide

MEMORABLE CHAPTER
‘Vorkuta – to freeze in fire’
The director states they would be exporting coal to the West. ‘And what does that mean – dollars? It means everything.’
Kapuscinski observes that the people are being fooled, but can’t do anything about it. ‘If only so as not to deprive them of the shred of comfort that they derive.’

MEMORABLE INCIDENT
Stalin’s orders to destroy the Temple of Christ the Saviour

DID THE BOOK MAKE YOU CURIOUS TO READ MORE ABOUT USSR/RUSSIA?’
‘Yes!’
‘Intrigue at the USSR’s pros too because when it fell, there was total chaos in many states.’

One thought on “Imperium – Ryszard Kapuscinski

Add yours

  1. What a fantastic idea!! So few book clubs read/discuss non-fiction, I love that you went ahead and started your own 😉 Keep up the great work!!

    Liked by 1 person

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