“Art is not an image of life, it is life itself.” This key phrase of Varlam Shalamov is the starting point of Eva Geulen’s reflections. The detour she takes to get into the heart of Shalamov’s prose leads from the 18th century novel via Lukács and Adorno to contemporary forms of modern literature. Her thesis that the incompatibility of realism and modernity could be a special Western path opens up the series of essays on Shalamov’s work. This is followed by statements on Shalamov’s narrative ethics, his poetry, his relationship to Marcel Proust and the cosmos of camp civilization. Schalamow. Lektüren brings together substantial and surprising confrontations with a literary work of the century of modernity. These contributions are supplemented by poetological texts by Shalamov translated for the first time.