Nikolaï Viliams

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(4084) Viliams, Nikolaï Nikolaevich (1926-2006). “GNIIPI” “Kratkii Kurs pod red. N.Viliamsa, soavtora i kollektiva, souchastnikov.”

Photocopy of an original typescript. 45 unstapled looseleaf sheets, missing page 8. 27,8cm x 21,6cm.

Mathematician, dissident, prisoner of the Stalinist camps Villiams is the author of the poem “Kommunisty poimali parnishku” (“The Communists caught a little boy”).
After his first year at university Viliams was condemned to five years in the camps for his participation in the “Nishchie Sibarity” (“The Poor Sybarites”) a group of self-styled anti-Soviets. Once released he finished his higher education then took up a teaching post at the Mendeleev Russian Unversity of Chemistry and Technology before being fired in 1968 for his signed support on a petition for Soviet political prisoners. Stripped of Soviet citizenship in 1977 he emigrated to the United States with Lyudmila Alexeyeva, his wife (herself a public figure associated with dissidence; see http://www.sptimes.ru/index.php?action_id=2&story_id=771).
Viliams takes up another teaching post and publishes in the review “Kontinent” and in 1993 he returned to Russia.
Written with V. Medvedskii in 1954 the short story “Ostrov GNIIPI” is a satirical “slanderous anti-Soviet diatribe” taking place in the fictional State Scientific Research Institute of Perversions and importantly is one of the first texts to be become a samizdat.
Our samizdat which also includes poetry in an appendix, is a photocopy of the original typewritten text, the only copy of which Viliams kept in his possession. The annotations are in his own hand as is the title. The former owner could not remember the exact date of acquisition but the paper format would lead us to believe that it should be around the years 1962-3.

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