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Turashvili, Dato

Turashvili, Dato


"Republic of Georgia"

Project Description

What is the history of Dutch-Georgian connections and relations and the Dutch role and function in the Georgian movement for independence and freedom?

In the beginning of twentieth century, when Georgia was a part of the Russian Empire and Georgians decided to have a free country again, there was a Dutch ship that brought guns and bullets for Georgians to fight against theRussian troops. The name of that Dutch ship was “Sirius” and among the passengers was a young Dutch man named Look Jansen who wanted to travel to Asia as a future historian. He had planned a future as a scientist, but not everything happens the way we expect it to happen. He meets a young Georgian woman in Tbilisi, who changes many things in his life. Her name is Tamar and she is a member of the Georgian movement for independence. Because of Tamar and his feelings, Jansen decides to learn more about  Dutch-Georgian relations. Look discovers Georgia as a very old country with a wonderful culture and falls in love with this country as well as with the beautiful young lady Tamar. He is happy when Georgia declares its independence in 1918, and becomes the first country in which social democrats win free parliamentary elections for the first time in world history. It is a period of important reforms (for example agrarian), human rights (especially women rights) and a renaissance of Georgian culture and literature. In 1921 Georgia was attacked again by the Russian empire, which by that time had become the Soviet Union. Look Jansen spends a month in the war against the Russians as a soldier of the Georgian army, motivated by the love for Tamar and Georgia.

This book is about the past – about Georgia one hundred years ago, but in fact it is a very contemporary project – even now, in 21th century, little Georgia faces the same problems on the road to be a modern and democratic state.

Dato Turashvili during his stay in Amsterdam in 2014

Selected Publications

1) Flight from the USSR
2) King of Woods
3) Another Amsterdam

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