Ivan Densovich Shukhov wakes up everyday wondering if he will survive the harsh day yet to come at the Russian gulag. He constantly worries that if he takes the wrong step he will be shot at or that he’ll freeze to death in the crisp winter winds.

Every day he wakes up knowing that no one is going to protect him and that every person with a gun in his hand has an order to shoot if they so wish. Everyday he wakes up knowing that he does not have something I value very much, safety. Imagine walking around knowing that no one and nothing is there to protect you. Ivan was always in a vulnerable spot because no matter what, he couldn’t protect himself. This is because the prisoners where not aloud any weapons. In the book he finds metals to make weapons and shanks.

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He had no choice, how was he supposed to protect himself in a desperate situation? Ivan has no protection; this is something that I value dearly. This is mainly because of the country I live in, the USA; we have certain rights and freedoms. We are allowed weapons to protect ourselves if necessary. Yet, even without a weapon, I still feel safe from family. Another thing Ivan is deprived of.

Family is there to protect you and keep you safe, but without it you are on your own. This is what happened to Ivan. He was taken away from his family and had to learn how to cope without the help on his parents. In the book the only interactions the prisoners have with their families are two letters a month. I have a family that would do anything to protect me. This is what Ivan is deprived of that I so cherish.

Even without family and protection Ivan still manages to persevere. He pushes to the end and never gives up. This is what the story; One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich portrays the most. In the book Tyurin says, “Come on, boys, don’t let it get you down! It’s only a Power Station, but we’ll make it a home away from home.” This states exactly what the prisoners do every day. They compromise and make the best out of everything.