Trauma och kollektiva minnen i Georgiens utrikespolitik


  • Per Ekman Uppsala universitet, Sverige


Abstract: Trauma and Collective Memories in Georgia’s Foreign Policy
Georgia’s foreign policy since the mid-1990s would appear to be a regional anomaly. While Georgia’s neighbors have either accommodated to Russia’s geopolitical interests or sought to navigate between Russia and the West, Georgian governments have pursued a comparatively stable pro-Western foreign policy orientation. Thus, structural arguments like geographic proximity, or Russia’s assertive foreign policy, cannot account for the variation in foreign-policy orientation among post-Soviet states. Moreover, although alternative explanations, like Georgia’s European identity and commitment to democracy, or explanations related to qualities of the Mikheil Saakashvili government, are not without merits, they cannot fully account for the continuity in Georgia’s pro-Western foreign policy over time. This article argues that the collective memory of the traumatic years 1989–1994 is a key factor for understanding Georgia’s foreign policy continuity. The collective memory and trauma related to loss of territory, together with a weak state and Russia’s negative involvement, have shaped the strategic thinking of Georgia’s foreign policy elites. This trauma explains Georgia’s shift to a pro-Western foreign policy in the mid-1990s and the continuity of this policy up until today. This argument is supported by the author’s interviews with key Georgian decision-makers responsible for foreign policy decisions.

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Per Ekman, Uppsala universitet, Sverige

Doktorand, Statsvetenskapliga institutionen



Hvordan sitere

Ekman, P. (2020). Trauma och kollektiva minnen i Georgiens utrikespolitik. Nordisk Østforum, 34, 172–193.





Emneord (Nøkkelord):

Georgia, foreign policy, collective memory, trauma