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Men in the Republic of Georgia

As Jerry White explains, during the Soviet period, and especially the 1960s–80s, Georgia viewed worldwide as a veritable hotbed of interesting filmmaking.  That’s a period that is at the heart of a touring programme of Georgian cinema organized by the Pacific Film Archive and the Museum of Modern Art, and White contributed an essay to that programme’s catalogue.

White has also been working with Nino Dzandzava, who is responsible for the film collection at the National Archives of Georgia, to make more widely-known the films that were made during Georgia’s first period of independence.  From 1918-1921, just after the collapse of the Czarist empire and before the Bolshevik invasion, the country was known as the Democratic Republic of Georgia.  Germane Gogidtze, a well-respected film producer, shot a series of newsreels during the period, now widely known as the Menshevik Chronicle or the Independence Chronicle.   These short documentaries showed Georgia as a multi-religious state that was both fully independent and strongly engaged with Europe, issues that strongly define Georgian politics today.