IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this article

The Formation of Nation-State and Cultural Identity: A Georgian Perspective


  • Lali Surmanidze

    () (Tbilisi State University)

  • Lia Tsuladze

    () (Tbilisi State University)


The paper discusses cultural specifics of the Georgians’ mental perception in the context of formation of the modern nation-state. The research has been conducted using the experimental psychosemantic method, based on which semantic spaces, reflecting the categorical system of meanings in the contemporary Georgians’ mentality, have been built. The material for the research consisted of universal (etic) categories interpreted within the cultural system specific to the Georgians (emic means of interpretation). For this purpose, we have referred to the historical facts, linguistic and folk material, and religious aspects of the Georgian Orthodox Christianity. The so called "Nation-State" cluster is the largest one out of several clusters revealed by the research. Its content has been interpreted based on semiotic analysis that highlights the semantic logic representing essential aspects of the Georgians’ collective representations, namely, their ethnic picture of the world. It is stated that national identity is the main idea influencing the development of the Georgian state and culture, and that the value of defending and preserving national identity is the oldest and strongest layer of the Georgian mentality. It is demonstrated that "Georgian" has always been the main criterion for evaluating all the life events and even personal self-realization has necessarily implied the element of being Georgian as its inseparable part. The research data confirm that till today the Georgians are evaluated in this context and it should be the main reason for why such concepts as "success", "achievement", "independence" and "freedom", which definitely represent personal context in the Western countries, are attributed to the wider context of nation-state in the Georgian mentality.

Suggested Citation

  • Lali Surmanidze & Lia Tsuladze, 2008. "The Formation of Nation-State and Cultural Identity: A Georgian Perspective," IBSU Scientific Journal, International Black Sea University, vol. 2(2), pages 87-102.
  • Handle: RePEc:ibl:journl:v:2:y:2008:i:2:p:87-102

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • I20 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - General


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:ibl:journl:v:2:y:2008:i:2:p:87-102. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Salavat Sayfullin). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    We have no references for this item. You can help adding them by using this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.