Posted 5 апреля 2021, 15:38

Published 5 апреля 2021, 15:38

Modified 25 декабря 2022, 20:57

Updated 25 декабря 2022, 20:57

Prison Memories: Equality of the Worst

5 апреля 2021, 15:38
Алина Витухновская
Memory is selective. I remember only bad things about my childhood. And only good things about prison. Well, you can see such a childhood. I remembered about torture by lack of sleep only after the news on Navalny. Although I once gave an interview about this and even wrote to Novoye Vremya. But it faded away.

Alina Vitukhnovskaya, writer

It was like this. Courts were held almost every day. And the prisoners who had a trial were woken up in the middle of the night, taken to the so-called assembly, where people sat for several more hours, then they were seated in paddy wagons and shook them along the seemingly uncomfortable roads of Moscow for several hours.

Then they kept him in some room in the court for a long time. I don’t remember what it’s called. I did not use specific prison slang at all. In the evening you wait until late for a paddy wagon and everything repeats. You find yourself in the cell already late at night. As a result, you have at best a little over an hour to sleep.

So on the fifth or sixth day, I just realized that I could not get up and refused to go to court, having previously called a doctor. Who even gave me sleeping pills. Then the order came from the court "to take me in any condition." I again refused to go. Then the prisoners were taken out of the cell and the dogs were brought in. The inmates asked me to agree to go and not allow this, but it was a matter of principle. Subconsciously, I realized that this is the right position - to go to the end to aggravate.

It looks like the dogs got scared of me and two "guards" dragged me by force. In court, however, I described everything in front of media cameras and the trial was adjourned. Moreover, some higher authority made an official claim to the court for such treatment of me. Of course, it was extreme on the edge. But. And those were the free 1990s. Free, of course, in comparison with today's Russia.

"Requires a special attitude towards itself." This was constantly presented to me, and it was in this formulation. In prison. And before that, in the family - everywhere else.

In Rossiyushka, in the firmware of the mass unconscious, all this is already incorporated - "Keep your head down", be erased by an impersonal zero, become a Templar of socialist emptiness, to renounce rights, from selfhood, in principle.

Why would I obey you and your laws? This is the main political question of the free subject. My prison diary began with this quote from Camus's Caligula: "I will show you what you have never seen, the only free person in this state."

Surprisingly, people advocate worse conditions for everyone when they see that someone else gets the best. The famous experiment with monkeys proves this:

“In the room (cage) a banana is suspended from the ceiling; after which several monkeys (chimpanzees) settle into this cage. Upon attempt

get one of the monkeys a banana, ALL the monkeys are doused with cold water. This is repeated several times, until the reflex is fixed: an attempt to get a banana inevitably means a collective cold shower (which is unpleasant).

1. Monkeys begin to beat any companion trying to get hold of a banana. Gradually, the situation develops in such a way that all the monkeys are sitting, looking at the banana, but no one is trying to get hold of it anymore. The first stage of the experiment is complete.

2. One of the monkeys in the experimental group is replaced by another one that has not previously taken part in the experiment. The beginner, of course, tries to get a banana, and therefore is subjected to a group beating, after which he abandons attempts to taste the monkey's joy.

3. Experimenters change the next old-timer monkey. The beating is repeated, with the previous rookie being the most vicious, beating up rookie # 2.

The process is repeated over and over again, until only monkeys remain in the cage, who have never tasted jets of ice water. They all sit and look at the banana (see the end of the first part of the experiment). The question is: why aren't any of them trying to get a banana? But because IT IS FUNCTIONAL HERE. " ©

I remembered that I had a similar story in prison. The inferno-cold set in there, people were freezing, turning blue, as if they were dying off before our eyes, turning into their own frozen likenesses. I slept under a fur coat, while others - under a pile of rags. On the advice of a lawyer, I wrote a letter to the then mayor of Moscow, Yuri Luzhkov, after which the heating was immediately repaired in the pre-trial detention center. I have never seen such mass discontent, such an almost Russian revolt (senseless ... and senseless). In all the primordial infantilism - laziness, envy, stupidity, dull masochism. The following sounded: "too warm", "too fat", "who is this Alina?", "Why because of her?" etc., etc.

It seemed that death to these people was preferable to "bourgeois warmth". What are the prisoners! The head of the prison herself - an aunt with Soviet chemistry and the face of a pseudo-SSF Freken Bok (Freken God) - rushed about the office for a long time and hysterically, wringing her hands in front of German journalists - “And what's all Vitukhnovskaya? What's all Vitukhnovskaya?! We have so many people sitting there!"

Then, in a fit of despair, she rushed to the cage with a parrot, took out a crumpled piece of paper, already soiled with food (those were my poems, confiscated during a search), fidgety unfolded it and recited with a strange and mournful pathos, shouting at last - “Here! Pushkin - I understand! Yesenin - I understand! Vitukhnovskaya? No, I don't understand!"

This story was told to me by Irina Revin-Hofmann, a journalist and human rights activist, who then managed to infiltrate the enemy's lair.