EPOCH OF SOVIET TOTALITARIANISM AND GEORGIAN COMEDY WITH A POLITICAL EMPHASIS (QVARQVARE TUTABERI BY POLIKARPE KAKABADZE)

Irma Ratiani, Tacija Oboladze, Lili Metereveli

Abstract


In 1929, just eight years after the establishment of the Soviet regime in Georgia, a writer and a playwright Polikarpe Kakabadze publishes his famous play Qvarqvare Tutaberi, thus throwing into disarray the leaders of the fledgling Soviet government. The play narrates the “revolutionary” adventure story of Qvarqvare Tutaberi, an idle, cowardly, uneducated and cunning man, over a short period, in the early months of the establishment of the Soviet regime. Occasionally Qvarqvare is a supporter of the Russian Emperor, occasionally a representative of the so-called “interim government”, occasionally – a supporter of the Bolsheviks. His position is always determined by one main principle: Who is in power? If the Emperor holds power, Qvarqvare is his supporter, if the “interim government” rules, Qvarqvare are the commander of its army, and if the Bolsheviks win, Qvarqvare is their “comrade”. A young Soviet censorship was very confused by the humorous character of the play: the scenes are full of comic situations, and dialogues, with absurd, unbelievable “logic”, the characters are caricatured and often exaggerated. On the one hand, the play mocked a foolish and flattering person (and people like him), politically immature and mentally unprepared for the “new times”, which was quite acceptable for Soviet criticism; on the other hand, the satirical-grotesque mocking of the existing environment was not picked up on, by Soviet censorship due to the humoristic attitude of the text. Thus, humor, for the first time performed the artistic function of a mechanism protecting from ideology.

Keywords


Soviet Totalitarianism, censorship, humour

Full Text:

PDF


DOI: https://doi.org/10.13165/SMS-17-9-1-02

Refbacks

  • There are currently no refbacks.




"Societal studies" ISSN online 2029-2244 / ISSN print 2029-2236