Pavel Nilin

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Pavel Nilin
Born Pavel Filippovich Nilin
(1908-01-16)January 16, 1908
Irkutsk, Irkutsk Governorate, Russian Empire
Died October 2, 1981(1981-10-02) (aged 73)
Moscow, Russian Federation
Genre Fiction, drama
Notable works Cruelty (1956)

Pavel Filippovich Nilin (Павел Филиппович Нилин, January 16 [o.s. January 3) 1908, Irkutsk, Russian Empire – October 2, 1981, Moscow, USSR) was a Soviet writer, journalist and playwright, best known for a novel called A Man Goes Uphill (1936, adapted to the big screen under the title A Great Life, for which he, as a scriptwriter, received the Stalin Prize in 1941), and also a novel Cruelty (1956).[1]


Pavel Nilin was born in Irkutsk, in the family of a political exile. After the 1917 Revolution he worked as a criminal investigation officer in the town of Tulun, Irkutsk region, then in 1927 embarked upon the career of a journalist, moving from Siberia first to Povolzhje, then Ukraine and finally Moscow. Here in Novy Mir his first short stories were published in 1936. In 1939 a novel about Donbass miners called A Man Goes Uphill (1936) was re-worked by Nilin into a script for the film which came out in 1940 under the title A Great Life (Bolshaya Zhyzn), enjoyed massive success and secured Nilin the Stalin Prize in 1941.[2]

After the war A Great Life, part 2 was shot, only to be instantly shelved. In a re-worked form it came out only in 1958. By this time Nilin was an established Soviet author, whose Cruelty (Zhestokost, 1956) novel, telling the story of the Soviet militia's fight against criminal gangs in the 1920s, proved to be both popular and critically acclaimed. Another well-received novel, a psychological war drama Across the Graveyard (Cherez kladbische) came out in 1962. Since 1971 Pavel Nilin served as a high-ranked officials being a member of the Soviet Union of Writer's leadership. Pavel Nilin died on October 2, 1981 in Moscow. He was buried at the Vagankovo Cemetery.[1]

Private life

Pavel Nilin has married Matilda Yufit (1909—1993). They had two sons: Alexander Nilin (b. 1940) — is a sport writer, Mikhail Nilin (b. 1945) is a psychologist and a script-writer.


  • A Man Goes Uphill (Tchelovek idyot v goru, 1936, novel)
  • Golden Hands (Zolotyie ruki, 1939, novelet)
  • About Love (O lyubvi, 1940, novelet)
  • In the White World (Na belom svete, 1947, play)
  • Going to Moscow (Poezdka v Moskvu, 1954, novelet)
  • The Trial Period (Ispytatelny srok, 1955)
  • Cruelty (Zhestokost, 1956)
  • Across the Graveyard (Cherez kladbishche, 1962)
  • Interesting Life (Interesnaya zhyzn, 1969—1980)


  1. 1.0 1.1 "Pavel Filippovich Nilin". Russian writers and poets. Brief biography dictionary. 2000. Retrieved March 1, 2012.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  2. "Pavel Filippovich Nilin". Krugosvet Encyclopedia. Retrieved March 1, 2012.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>

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