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Monday, 20 August 2018


The lessons of misunderstanding, or Who is going to protect the Russian language?

2009-07-17 16:34

3402.jpegRussia and Georgia are in a state of unannounced war. Fortunately, there have been no more explosions and firing since last August. Still, each of the parties never misses a chance to have a dig at its opponent. Thus, the Georgian parliamentarians decided to launch a war against the Russian language. In the opinion of the ruling majority representative Georgi Gabashvili, the Russian language is dominating the TV air. The deputies are working on the law that will place restrictions on using Russian.


A fight for the Georgian language, that is, against the use of the Russian language on the air was started by one of the Georgian parliamentary majority leaders Georgi Gabashvili. "Russian is a good language but it is unfairly dominating the Georgian TV air", - he stated recently, according to Interfax. An attack against the Russian language has been initiated in Georgia several times already.

Let us remind you that last February, the Reaction Internet group came out with an initiative to set up a one-day boycott in the media in respect of the Russian language on January, 25. However, the "Reactionists" tried to put up a good front, underlining that the action was not supposed to be aimed against the Russian culture; still, they addressed the TV and radio companies, demanding not to broadcast films and songs in Russian on that day.

It was obviously decided to continue the boycott at the legislative level. During a meeting held on July, 9, the Georgian parliament Committee for Education, Science, Culture and Sports have discussed draft laws on making amendments to the Broadcasting Law and the Law on the State Support of the National Cinematography in the first reading. These amendments will prohibit broadcasting movies with the Russian dubbing. According to Georgia Today, an exception is made for the products meant for children of preschool age.

As to the foreign movies with the Russian dubbing, they will be broadcasted only by the Russian-language channels, which are rather few. Today, there is only one Russian-broadcasting company in Georgia, the Alania TV Company. The rest of the TV channels will not be allowed to broadcast any films in Russian, which is not very much welcomed by the Georgian TV audience. The new rules already prohibit showing foreign films with Russian translation in the cinemas and on TV. As Minister of Georgia for Culture, Sports and Monument Protection Nikoloz Rurua explained to the journalists, "firstly, the audience will better perceive the original, for the translation is usually very poor".

"Another advantage is that the major part of the audience will get used to the foreign language very quickly", - Rurua said, adding that "this is a world-level experience". He named Singapore, where "the knowledge of English is proclaimed obligatory", reports.

The parliamentary opposition is trying to criticize these amendments from the standpoint of violence against a person, as long as the people are going to be pressed to study foreign languages against their will. The oppositional delegates also believe that watching non-translated films with subtitles will present a problem not only for the short-sighted people. Magda Anikashvili, a representative of the Christian Democrats' oppositional fraction, has stressed the fact that there are those who make Georgian dubbing of the foreign films, and the new law might become an obstacle for them.

Meanwhile, Chairman of Parliament David Backradze called upon the oppositional delegates "to stop making a tragedy" of this draft law. It should also be mentioned that the law on obligatory dubbing of foreign films was passed in the 90s, although it has not been strictly complied with.

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