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Dato Turashvili, Georgian writer | © George Mel /  WikiCommons
Dato Turashvili, Georgian writer | © George Mel / WikiCommons

7 Georgian Writers You Can Read In English 

Picture of Baia Dzagnidze
Writer
Updated: 28 November 2017
Georgia is where you will find some of the most ancient and vibrant literature in the world. Georgian writers have played an essential role in developing a rich culture full of traditions. Some of the modern writers have been translated into English, so we’ve created a list for you to enjoy. It’s time to get cozy with a glass of chacha and learn about the best Georgian authors that can be read in English.

Aka Morchiladze

Born in Tbilisi, Morchiladze now lives and works in London and is the winner of several literary awards for best novel nomination in Georgia. As a contemporary Georgian author of literary fiction, Morchiladze studied Georgian History at Tbilisi State University. For a while he worked as a sports journalist for a daily newspaper and also took part in Europe’s Literature Express in 2000.

© Dalkey Archive Press

His twenty novels and short stories were published by Sulakauri Publishing House beginning in 1998. His most famous novel, Journey to Karabakh (available in English), was even made into a movie in 2005. The film gained similar popularity among locals as did the book, which resulted in the production of two sequels of the movie. The scripts for the two movies were written by Morchiladze himself. Plays have also been produced based on his work.

Journey to Karabakh is about two Georgian youngsters traveling to Karabakh, a contested region between Azerbaijan and Armenia, to purchase cheap drugs. One of the boys gets captured, first by Azeris and then by Armenians. He spends so much time away from home that he realizes he is no longer in a hurry to return. He wonders if there is even anything waiting for him back home. Georgia had just ended its own civil war, his alcoholic father would weigh him down, and he knew that his family would never accept his girlfriend, who he got pregnant. Over the course of the book, the author touches the subject of finding and defining freedom.

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Dato Turashvili

©Mosaic Press

Turashvili is a fiction writer whose first novels, published in 1988, were based on the turmoil of the events taking place during the last years of Soviet Union rule in Georgia. His most famous work is Jeans Generation; translated into English, its title is Flight From USSR. In 2001 it was turned into a play.

Based on the most shocking and scandalous story of the 80s in Soviet Georgia, the Flight from USSR tells the story of seven youngsters hijacking an airplane to escape from Soviet Georgia. This was during a time when even thinking about escaping the Soviet Union was considered a crime. The government condemned most of the youngsters to death for their naive attempt. The author gives the reader a look into the characters’ perspectives, motivations and intentions.

Besides novels, Turashvili has written scripts, plays, and short stories. He has published approximately 16 books in Georgia and has been translated into seven languages in different countries. Moreover, he has authored scientific-research letters concerning history, as well as literary criticism. He has also translated poetic and prosaic texts from Spanish, Turkish, English, and Russian languages.

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Ana Kordzaia-Samadashvili

© Dalkey Archive Press

Kordzaia-Samadashvili is a writer and literary journalist who has written some of the best-selling prose of post-Soviet Georgian literature. She is a winner of several Georgian literary awards, and her works have been translated