Freedom ≠ Right
Sophia Takahashi - Literary Analysis
One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich - Pages 167-178 (Afterword)
Rotation #5 (Final Rotation)
One must keep faith and hope when stuck in a jail cell - if hope is lost, you basically lose the will to keep on surviving until you're free. Shukhov clearly has hope, as shown in page 41, "And Shukhov wife nursed the strong hope that when Ivan returned he too would become one of those painters (Solzhenitsyn 41)," where Shukhov/his wife talks about Ivan coming back home to work again. Ivan 'dreams' of coming back home to his family - which gives him faith. If he had nothing to come back to, would he even try?
Freedom (or lack of)
Freedom (or lack of) is an essential theme in this novel. The book itself is about a Day in the Life of a gulag prisoner in Soviet Union. One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich portrays Shukhov's life in a gulag prison, where he is made to be a 'slave'.
He is basically chained up on himself, where there's no way out. Forced to work for his superiors, he is left without any freedom. While he doesn't have freedom nor right, he has no say and his voice/belief is silenced.
Power (or lack of)
You can see that Shukhov has no power: no power over his voice, opinion and belief. All the prisoners are silenced due to them being inferiors. The guards/the guard's leader's hold all the power, when the prisoners have none at all. In One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich, Ivan's food, and materials are depended on what the guards give them: if they have more food or less, etc.
Equality is clearly lacked in this book for important reasons. First of all, you can see great differences between the guards and the prisoners, where there's no equality, since one is more superior than the other.