Author Archives: Irakli Gunia

Florian Mühlfried – Banquets, Grant-Eaters and the Red Intelligentsia in Post-Soviet Georgia

In many societies banquets are powerful tools for expressing, attributing and manipulating national identity. Additionally, they often function as social markers of individual passages like birth, baptism and marriage. Banquets are ruled by etiquette and force participants to subordinate to a collective code of behavior. In post-Soviet Georgia, the supra, a highly formalized banquet, is a core element of national culture and a crucial part of both festivities and daily life.

Mühlfried, F. (2005). Banquets, Grant-Eaters and the Red Intelligentsia in Post-Soviet Georgia. Central Eurasian Studies Review, 4(1), 16-19.

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S. Neil MacFarlane – Two Years of the Dream: Georgian Foreign Policy During the Transition

Since coming to power in late 2012, the Georgian Dream coalition has encountered an extremely challenging foreign and domestic policy environment – marked, in particular, by the difficulty of balancing relationships with the West and Russia respectively. In its first year, the government’s foreign policy was impaired by inexperience and lack of professionalism, as well as by confusion and dysfunctionality caused by the sharing of power with President Mikheil Saakashvili of the United National Movement.

MacFarlane S. N. (2015). Two Years of the Dream: Georgian Foreign Policy During the Transition. Chatham House: Russia And Eurasia Program. 

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Bruno Coppieters – In Defence of the Homeland: Intellectuals and the Georgian-Abkhazian Conflict

The present chapter is devoted to the use of history – in particular, the methods of ethnogenesis – and other scientific disciplines as mobilizing tools in the conflict between the Georgian and Abkhazian communities. This chapter describes the kind of arguments and scientific disciplines to be found in the Georgian-Abkhazian conflict over the political status of Abkhazia, and the way in which scholars in both national communities have reflected on questions such as the moral responsibility of the intelligentsia in the mass mobilizations leading to the war, and criteria for truthfulness in scientific debates.

Coppieters, B. (2002). In Defence of the Homeland: Intellectuals and the Georgian-Abkhazian Conflict. In B. Coppieters, & M. Huysseune (Eds.), Secession, History and the Social Sciences. (pp. 89-116). Brussels: VUBPRESS.

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Rebecca Gould – Aleksandre Qazbegi’s Mountaineer Prosaics: The Anticolonial Vernacular on Georgian–Chechen Borderlands

The Georgian writer Aleksandre Qazbegi (1848-1893) is notable for the anticolonial themes that were inspired by the seven years he passed among as a mountaineer. Drawing on ethnography to advance expressive possibilities of prose, Qazbegi’s literary aesthetic challenged prior poetic norms, while using vernacular realism to pioneer a new prosaic form. This essay examines the conjunctures of ethnography, prosaics, and the literary imagination to consider how Qazbegi rendered mountaineer life on Georgian-Chechen borderlands.

Gould, R. (2014). Aleksandre Qazbegi’s Mountaineer Prosaics: The Anticolonial Vernacular on Georgian–Chechen Borderlands. Ab Imperio2014(1), 361-390.

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Heidi Tagliavini – Independent International Fact-Finding Mission on the Conflict in Georgia

By its decision of 2 December 2008 the Council of the European Union established an Independent International Fact-Finding Mission on the Conflict in Georgia (IIFFMCG). This is the first time in its history that the European Union has decided to intervene actively in a serious armed conflict. It is also the first time that after having reached a ceasefire agreement the European Union set up a Fact-Finding Mission as a political and diplomatic follow-up to the conflict. In its work, the Mission has been assisted and advised by a Senior Advisory Board (see Acknowledgements). The present Report is the result of the mandated inquiry.

The Mission thanks the European Union for the steadfast support extended to the Mission throughout the whole period of its work.

It should be stressed that the Fact-Finding Mission is strictly limited to establishing facts and is not a tribunal. The Mission believes that there can be no peace in the South Caucasus as long as a common understanding of the facts is not achieved.

Tagliavini, H. (2009). Independent International Fact-Finding Mission on the Conflict in Georgia. European Union, Brussels.

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