Works in Progress

Works-in-Progress (WiP) is an ongoing academic discussion series based in Tbilisi, Georgia, that takes place at the new office of CRRC at Chkhikvadze St. 1. It is co-organized by the Caucasus Research Resource Centers (CRRC), the American Councils for International Education: ACTR/ACCELS, and the American Research Institute of the South Caucasus (ARISC). All of the talks are free and open to the public.

The purpose of the WiP series is to provide support and productive criticism to those researching and developing academic projects pertaining the Caucasus region. 
Would you like to present at one of the W-i-P sessions, please contact:

Works in Progress: De Facto States and Their Patrons: Towards Theory-Building

Tuesday | 21 November , 2017
On Wednesday, November 22, 18:30 at CRRC-Georgia office Dr. Vincenc Kopeček from the University of Ostrava (Czechia) will present his work "De Facto States and Their Patrons: Towards Theory-Building".

Terms such as occupation, puppet state, protectorate etc. are quite often employed in order to describe relations between de facto states and their patrons. These terms, however, seem to be rather more political than academic, as they mostly reflect the position of one party of the dispute. In fact, relations between individual de facto states and their patrons are somewhat neglected in the scholarly literature, though there are some works one can build on, such as the concept of kin state developed by Brubaker and applied by Caspersen for the cases of several de facto states in the Balkans. The concept of kin state involvement serves as the basis for an analysis of relations between Armenia and Nagorno-Karabakh. These relations, in comparison with other similar cases, such as the Turkish-North Cypriot relations, feature a whole range of highly specific features, such as a common ethno-cultural framework, mutually mingling political elites and a handful of formal and, most importantly, a whole range of informal mechanisms, which enable both entities to achieve political deals, as well as to mutually influence each other’s internal decision making processes.

Works in Progress: Religious Conversions in the 19th Century Caucasus

Tuesday | 07 November , 2017
The borderlands of the Caucasus mountains have been the site of fierce territorial contestation and enduring religious rivalries. The communities that historically inhabited this region were frequently subjected to the tumultuous aftermath of the shifting power balance of the empires that sought to control and dominate the Caucasus. This talk will present a brief examination of actual cases of religious conversion and apostasy in the Caucasus contextualized in the Russian imperial laws. The talk by Sergey Saluschev, UC Santa Barbara, will aim to shed light on the ongoing scholarly conversation about the politics of religious identity and religious toleration in the Russian Empire and the Caucasus in particular. 

Works in Progress: The Icon and the Metro: Art and Architecture in 1960s Tbilisi

Wednesday | 01 November , 2017
CRRC, ARISC and American Councils are proud to present the 2nd talk of the Fall 2017 Works-in-Progress series!

Paul Manning, Trent University: “The Icon and the Metro: Art and Architecture in 1960s Tbilisi”

Professor Paul Manning received his PhD in linguistics from the University of Chicago in 2001. He has taught anthropology at Northern Illinois University, Reed College, and Bard College. His research focuses on linguistic and semiotic anthropology in Europe (Wales) and Eurasia (Georgia). He has done fieldwork on Welsh speaking populations in Wales, Argentina and on Georgian speaking populations in Georgia and Russia.

Works in Progress: WiP: Sport and Ideology in Authoritarian Regimes. The Case of Asiada-2017 in Ashgabat | October 11, 18:30, CRRC-Georgia Office

Monday | 09 October , 2017
On Wednesday, October 11, 18:30 at CRRC-Georgia Office Slavomir Horak from the Charles University in Prague will speak about sports as an important aspect of the presentation of authoritarian regimes. Particularly, through organizing spectacular sporting events, authoritarian regimes seek self legitimisation and confirmation of their status, both internally and externally. Turkmenistan is an excellent example of this phenomenon. This relatively rigid and strong authoritarian regime has recently organised the Asian Indoor and Martial Arts Games in Ashgabat. Although the event had rather secondary significance even within the Asian Olympic movement, official Ashgabat promoted it as crucial 2017 Asian sporting event.