Cummings Foundation Grant Recipient
Sunstone Press


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By Edward Keonjian

The autobiography of Edward Keonjian, Ph. D. One of the pioneers of microelectronics, the technology which transformed our daily lives. A compelling and uplifting human story of survival, courage and determination."-As the title indicates, the journey of microelectronics pioneer Keonijian through the 20th century has not been easy. Born in 1909 into a middle-class family in Tsarist Russia, he went on to earn a doctorate from the Leningrad Institute of Electrical Engineering. Keonjian was arrested during Stalin's Terror and then again during WWII, spending time at a German concentration camp. To his credit, he never gave up on life or its possibilities and eventually emigrated to the U.S., where he was recruited into the research group that developed the first transistorized circuit boards. Subsequently, he worked in the space program and made several significant contributions in the field of microelectronics. History is often told from the top--by presidents, generals and the like. An equally valuable perspective can be provided, however, by those, like Keonjian, who play less dramatic roles but who may enjoy an equally wide-angled view of events. In this well-written memoir, he offers what amounts to an everyman's chronicle of one of the darkest centuries in history. His restless intellectual energy charges the book, as it has his life, and in his triumph over adversity he embodies the sentiment of an old Russian proverb he quotes: "Zhizn silneye smerty"--"Life is stronger than death."

Sunstone Press (1997)