Curiosa fusión morfológica del inglés y el ruso, de lo coloquial y lo político, formada por el verbo del inglés “to refuse” y el sufijo ruso “-nik”, este sustantivo se usó para designar a los ciudadanos soviéticos, generalmente judíos, a los que les era denegada la solicitud para emigrar y a su vez eran despedidos de sus trabajos, interrogados y considerados sospechosos.
Early on Saturday, 20 March, his fifty-sixth birthday, Tsypkin sat down at his desk to continue work on the translation of a medical text from English into Russian – translating being one of the few possibilities of eking out a living open to refuseniks (Soviet citizens, usually Jews, who had been denied exit visas and fired from their jobs) – suddenly felt unwell (it was a heart attack), lay down, called out to his wife, and died. He had been a published author of fiction for exactly seven days.
Susan Sontag, “Loving Dostoyevsky”, 2001. Introduction to Summer in Baden-Baden, by Leonid Tsypkin, 1981.