BGS Inaugural Georgia Day at Pembroke College Cambridge

On Friday June 21st from 2pm – 6.30pm, there will be a special BGS Georgian event in the Old Library, Pembroke College Cambridge . The first half of the afternoon will be a high level political seminar entitled Georgia – Political Challenges and Constitutional Solutions with a keynote address by the Chairman of the Georgian Parliament Speaker David Usupashvili, one of the leading and most influential politicians in Georgia today. Mr Usupashvhili will then join a panel discussion with Sir Tony Brenton (UK Ambassador to Russia 2004-2008), Judith Gough (UK Ambassador to Georgia 2010 – 2013), David Howarth (MP for Cambridge 2005-2010) and Roy Reeve (former head of OSCE mission in Tbilisi 2004 – 2007). The event will be chaired by Sir Richard Dearlove, Master of Pembroke College Cambridge. This is a unique opportunity to understand how Georgia is developing a few months after the unexpected election victory for Georgia’s Dream Coalition and before the presidential elections in October. 

The second session of the afternoon will focus on Georgian literature in two contrasting important historical eras – Queen Tamar and the twenty years after the breakup of the Soviet Union. Professor Charles Melville (Professor of Persian History, Fellow of Pembroke College) and Dr Firuza Melville (Academic Associate, Head of Shahnama Centre, Pembroke College) will talk about Visramiani – the Georgian Perception of a Persian Love StoryFollowed by Professor Donald Rayfield (Author, Historian and Professor of Russian and Georgian, Queen Mary, University of London) on Decade of Chaos and a Decade of Change – as Georgian Writers have Perceived themThe session will be introduced and chaired by Cambridge Historian Dr Hubertus Jahn (Fellow of Clare College Cambridge, lecturer in Russian and East European history). The afternoon will end with a reception with Georgian wine and songs from Chela, the Cambridge Georgian choir. 

This event has been convened by Firuza Melville of Pembroke College and Jason Osborn and Craig Oliphant of British Georgian Society. Admission is free but to reserve a place please register by emailing

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