Writer Davit Gabunia travels through his native Georgia to visit the grave of his cousin, who was killed in the war against Russia in 2008. He gives us a profound and moving picture of how his country ticks.
On his journey, Davit talks to demonstrators in the capital Tbilisi, the curator of the bizarre Stalin Museum and with a convinced Stalinist who would like to see the statue of the Soviet dictator returned to its plinth in the city from the industrial wasteland where it was dumped. He also visits places that have a great personal meaning for him. Davit’s cousin Shalva died in the Georgian-Russian War of 2008 and he visits the grave in his hometown of Poti on the Black Sea for the first time. For ten years, he didn’t dare come back here. Born in 1982, the writer looks at the conflict in his home country through the lens of the so-called “administrative frontier” between Georgia and the breakaway region of South Ossetia. Russia has occupied South Ossetia, which is internationally recognized as part of Georgia, ten years. Davit meets an old farmer’s wife and learns how the conflict here affects her everyday life. There’s lots of material for Davit’s black notebook, where he meticulously notes down everything that happens during the journey and so creates a panorama of contemporary Georgia.
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