Ilia Chavchavadze - 180


Ilia State University

Institute of Comparative Literature

24-25 October 2017

Conference Dedicated to the 180th Anniversary of Ilia Chavchavadze’s Birth

Ilia Chavchavadze: Sacralisation/Secularisation of the Cultural Figure 

Ilia Chavchavadze is considered Georgia’s most important national figure, the national poet, the major contributor to developing modern Georgian national identity, the introducer of ideas of secularity, civic culture and modern statehood to his contemporary Georgia. He is a sacral figure of Georgia’s cultural space / a cultural saint, and the saint of the Georgian Orthodox Church.

The tradition of veneration of Ilia Chavchavadze was established in Georgia already in his lifetime, and is carried on nowadays. Within 110 years since his death, most differing and even opposing ideological, political or cultural discourses have been claiming the ownership upon his legacy, for the sake of self-legitimation. Ilia Chavchavadze’s literary texts have been interpreted in various, often in mutually exclusive ways.

Possible topics may include, but are not restricted to:

  • Ilia Chavchavadze and cultural, national, ideological, political and religious discourses in Georgia.
  • Ilia Chavchavadze and Georgia of his times, and till nowadays.
  • Sacralisation of cultural figures in Europe and in Georgia.
  • Romantic Nationalism, national poets, and formation of nationalism in Europe and in Georgia.
  • Ilia Chavchavadze and the problems of interpretation of literary text.

Selected papers will be published in the volume dedicated to the 180th anniversary of Ilia Chavchavadze’s birth, by the Ilia State University Press.

Confirmed speakers:

Professor Joep Leersen (University of Amsterdam)

Professor David Ayers (University of Kent)

Dr Marijan Dović (Institute of Slovenian Literature and Literary Studies)

Please send your proposals for 20-minute long panel papers in the form of 250-word abstracts to by 15th July 2017.

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