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Tbilisi resident Alexander Kvahadze take Circassian language teaching in Turkey 02:10 Вторник 0 5 090
30-08-2011, 02:10

Tbilisi resident Alexander Kvahadze take Circassian language teaching in Turkey

To practice his knowledge of the Circassian (Adyghe)language, a young resident of Tbilisi, Alexander Kvahadze specially went to the Circassian diaspora in Turkey. But the desire to be in Adygeya for him remains unfulfilled dream.

... On a picture in FaceBook there is a Georgian young boy in a white Circassian costume who proudly hold a green Circassian flag. I've known this person’s face from long time - a couple of years ago a small interview with the student at Tbilisi State University called Alexander Kvahadze or Aleko's as his friends name him, has been sent by a journalist from Krasnodar - Panesh Saida, and I published it in the "Shapsugia." Then, this material has caused considerable concern among readers. Fact is really trivial: regular guy who lives in Georgia, utterly in love with Circassian language and folklore, studying them on a scientific level and writes a thesis. Given current political realities in the light of the aggravated at the international level, "Circassian question," now someone could be suspected in Kvahadze by all mortal sins: they say, why should he? Hence, all for a reason, it has far-reaching plans, not otherwise – he is a spy. Meanwhile, the Caucasian languages in Tbilisi, including Ubykh seriously studied for decades - this is traditionally the strongest Caucasian linguistic science school. Himself Aleko has a "strong liking" to the Circassian (Adyghe) speech about four years ago, not having at that time, no idea about the problem of Circassians' genocide, which is now in hearing from anyone so deliberately politicize the subject, perhaps, not worth it.

Tbilisi resident Alexander Kvahadze take Circassian language teaching in Turkey
Tbilisi resident Alexander Kvahadze take Circassian language teaching in Turkey
Bursa. Professor of Adygeya Batyrby Bersirov and a young researcher of Circassian language Aleko Kvahadze)

I accidentally met him in Turkey. Ensemble "NEF", who participated in the International Folklore Festival, held annually in the city of Yalova, was invited to the gala reception and dinner on behalf of the head of one of the municipalities of Bursa called Osman Gazi Mustafa called Dundar. We waited in a city park, where long tables were covered. Among the welcoming people, I was surprised to see ... gaily smiling Aleko! What brings him here - where is Tbilisi and where is Bursa? As it turned out, the student Kvahadze passed practices here nearby. Upon learning of the arrival of the delegation of Adygeya, he, of course, immediately rushed to the meeting.

- After finishing basic training course at the university, I went to the magistracy, gathering material for a thesis, which will be dedicated to Circassian (Adygeyan) language, its dialects and their distribution among the diaspora - he said. - I was lucky in our university, the state program that helps students to gain practical skills in speaking foreign languages abroad. I chose Turkey. Here I have the opportunity to practice the knowledge of Turkish along with Circassian languages, given that in this country lives the largest Circassian Diaspora. Fortunately, did not come in vain: there's a lot of interesting material, which will surely come in handy in my future work.

Aleko speaks Circassian language (Adyghabze) easily, without too much difficulty. Carefully pronounces, as if savoring every word, apparently, to find a worthy companion, a virtuoso command of the language such as Professor Batyrby Bersirov in everyday life is very rarely. Non-Circassian origin Kvahadze shows only light Georgian accent. But when Alecko loudly, with a sense of dignity start to recite the best poems of Mashbasha - it is virtually impossible to distinguish him from Circassians.

- My main specialty – Oriental-studies and Turkology - he says. - Once, it was four years ago, we had somehow a canceled lecture. I stood in the hallway of a university and waited for the next session. My friend offered to go to his lecture, the chair of the Caucasian languages, to sit in class for Circassian (Adygeyan) language. Tamara Shamilyevna Udzhuhu has led it. She comes from the village of Dzhidzhihabl of the Republic of Adygeya. In Soviet times, as a student she came to Tbilisi to learn the Georgian language, married to a local guy, and for many years now lives in Georgia. Here, she teaches at the University Circassian language and actively engaged in social activities. On that day, the teacher allowed me to attend her classroom, and then unexpectedly offered to try to repeat some of the Circassian sounds. Tamara Shamilyevna was deeply surprised by the ease with which I uttered the hard sounds that were difficult to other students.

Thus, the unexpected, at first glance, the fate of the zigzag was Aleko for determining in real life. Of his hobbies, he no longer retreats.
- I quickly "grasp" languages - he admits. – In a two days training I have learned to fluently read Circassian primer, a week later - to write in the Circassian (Adyghe) language, even after 9 months - to express almost any thought in Circassian (Adygeyan). Every day I remembered twenty- phrases, adding to my vocabulary and trained pronunciation. Perfection to me, of course, still very far away, but to find common ground with the Circassians to me it is already quite capable.

Come to grips with learning the Circassian (Adyghe) language, Aleko began deeply interested in our history and culture. After reading the famous book of Bagrat Shinkuba "Last of the Departed," which tells about the tragic fate of Ubykh - indigenous people of Sochi, dissolved in a strange land, he decided for himself: it is his theme.

- I really like the Circassian language, - the source continues. - This knowledge is very useful for any linguist in the world because there are few languages that are so rich and complex verb phonetics. And then, Georgian and Circassian languages belong to the same linguistic group. At various times, famous Georgian and foreign researchers, such as Michael Kurdiani Merab Chukhua, Ian Brown, René Lafont and Heinz Fenrih finally proved the kinship of Caucasian and North Kartvelian languages.

At the Department of Caucasian studies, Tbilisi State University is currently teaches several languages, said Aleko. Among them - the Abkhaz, Abaza, Adyghe (Circassian), Ubykh, Georgian, Mengrel, Svan, Chechen, Ingush, Ossetian, Azeri, Avar, and Udi Tabasaran. Lectures and workshops on Ubykh language is the daughter of a famous linguist, Simon Janashia - Rusudan Janashia.

- Language of Ubykh, unfortunately, is dead, so now it is limited only to learning grammatical sketch and a linguistic analysis of texts - reflects Kvahadze. - A great help in my research work I have got from works of Circassian (Adyghe) linguists, literary works of poets and writers, as well as the Internet, where I found many friends among the Circassian youth living in different countries. We corresponded regularly, discussing interesting topics and pressing issues - communication is simply irreplaceable for me. In my spare time I listen with pleasure to Circassian folk songs and instrumental music, look at tapes of the Circassian folklore groups.

Having visited several foreign countries, Aleko dreaming about a trip to Russia, the Caucasus, Adygeya. There he had friends, acquaintances, they can fully apply the acquired knowledge and skills to get something new. But the old dream still remains an elusive to the guy. For political reasons. Complicated in recent years, relations between Russia and Georgia, each time forced him to postpone the idea until a better time. Only when it will come?

Anzor Nebo.
Sochi - Bursa - Sochi.
Photo by the author.

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