Generational Difference in Understanding Georgian National Identity and The Other




Galdava, Ellen

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This thesis describes generational difference in understanding Georgian national identity and the Other. Political developments in Eastern Europe and the implementation process of the Association Agreement with Europe make the study particularly interesting for conflict resolution practitioners. Exploration of attitudes toward Russians and Europeans will help practitioners design appropriate intervention strategies for lessening the possibility of conflict escalation. In addition, the purpose of the qualitative study was to explore the gap among generations and to examine the possibility of civic tensions in Georgia. The study examined three age groups: youth (18-28), adult (29-49), and senior (50-75). The research findings reveal distinct differences between the age groups in the understanding of the Georgian national identity. The major generational gap is observed in the identity formation among the youth. Differently from the adult and the senior generations, they define Georgian national identity in terms of citizenship. A long with that, different perceptions of Russia create another major gap among the generations. The only time youth prefer diplomatic relations with Russia is if Russia de-occupies Abkhazia and South Ossetia. The adult and the senior generations do not have any pre-conditions for establishing diplomatic and friendly relations with Moscow. These two major gaps in understanding Georgian national identity and perception of Russia produce possibility of a civic tension among the generations.



Georgia, Generation, National identity, The other, Russia, Conflict