Nikolai Ostrovsky: Utilizing Brains beyond what the Body Could Perceive

A man known for his contributions to the development of the Russian society during the years of the war, Nikolai Ostrovsky was noted to be among the few Russians who stood for their idealisms with strong conviction and desire to make sure that the nation they love would not be completely ruined by the war. Although Ostrovsky was born to a working class family, this did not keep him away from attaining a social reputation that was almost impossible to acquire for someone belonging to his class. For several years, he served as a regular employee, however, in 1918, he decided to join and serve for the Red Army. During this time, he experienced several occasions of being subjected to challenging events. Physical trauma was not an exemption to the service he is ready to provide the army with. He was strong willed and determined to make sure that his people do not develop negatively because of the war years.

The year 1922 however offered him with a new challenge in life. He suffered rheumatism and typhus and was then sent to Berdyansk for treatment. The diagnosis was certain and he was declared incapable of retaining his regular job and his position in the Red Army. However, Ostrovsky thought otherwise. He did not stop working. He knew that his physical ailment was just part of the challenge and simply subjecting himself to it was a choice he does not want to take. Instead of simply putting himself under treatment and doing nothing, he began to write and one of his most celebrated written works is that of the novel entitled How the Steel was Tempered. Through pen and paper, he related the realities behind the impact of the war in his country and his people. At this point, he was then considered as one of the most influential individuals of his time and even at present in relation to defining the realities of communism.

True, even beyond the physical incapacities he has incurred, he did not stop in creating more possibilities for himself to help the society, to contribute to its growth and even to provide inspiration to others. As a legacy, he was recognized as one of the Russian heroes the country celebrates up to this day. An award giving body was also named after him along with that, the recognition of the Order of Lenin was also given to him . These achievement were beyond the expected results from a person at his condition. At the age of 32, Ostrovsky died due to complication of his ailments [namely paralysis, blindness and other accompanying illnesses]. Nevertheless, his death did not end his name’s flourishing point, instead, it was the beginning of the recognition of his works and legacies. His life became a proof to the fact that no disabilities should hinder one person from achieving the most out of his life as he tries to contribute to the betterment of the lives of the people around him.


Richardson, Dan (2001). The rough guide to Moscow. Rough Guides. p. 135.