Maia Jaliashvili                                                                                                                                                                           # 3


 Aspects of Narration

 (According to the story by Jemal Karchkhadze Antonio and David)

 Keywords: Narration; Karchkhadze; Georgian; Literature.


The prose of Jemal Karchkhadze is distinctive from narrative point of view. His stile of narration makes particularly different manners and is very distinguished in the XX century Georgian literature. In his stories one can notice a skilful synthesis of historical and invented facts. The reader is immediately influenced by the facts and becomes an active member of fiction plays.In the story the author replays literary myths by the name. He emphasizes three plans of narration. One is done by a main narrator_Bartolomeo, the second_by Antonio and the third By David.

The area of narration is super historical. Drama described by the author can be performed in any area and time and at any stage. The relating time is a space, as in reality traveling is shown as the maze of soul. Personal passion, feelings are materialized, in order to make narration much more attractive.

Writer uses classical strategies of narration and gives it extraordinary colors. Among them are: 1. Simple, plain, but very interesting plot. 2. Georgian habits and customs described from the view point of a foreigner. 3. Elements of detective  that increase the level of expectation of readarers. 4. Eternal and actual religious themes of struggling soul and corporal feelings. 5. Laconic ~Socrates~ like dialogues wich are followed by new ideas and development of events. 6. Naturally given tropes such as: metaphor,comparable element. 7. Expressive, light narration. 8. Discussion full of intellectuality.

To give the tone to  narrative most important is the choice the title of the story and his aesthetical aspects.  Generally, the titles of Jemal Karchkhadze’s stories are significant. ~Antonio and David~ are the title of that sort that expresses the resistance of the universe. It is the opposition of  light and darkness, kindness  and evil, sin and mercy. We must  underline, that this title is doubly codified. One side, it means that we above said, in other side, this is the representation of process synthesis or combination of different things.The transformation of evil to goodness realized by the way some kind with cost of heavy sacrifice.

The ~voices~ of Antonio and David is absolutely different. Can or not agreement  between them and what way? That is the  the thing of writer’s interest. He  offer to reader original art version of transformation darkness to light. The complicated religious  and philosophical plural problems are depicted clearly and transparent in the story. How the writer makes it? First of all, the structure of the  text is well-considered. Every  art detail, surface or profundity, has  own place. He makes colourful pallete of narration in this story. There is precisely find  rhythm, which makes an effect and  indelible impression to readers. In this point, the beginning and end of `Antonio and david` is created masterful. There is distinct style and rhythm, that is variation changing according  art information.

The chief narrator has finished one impressionable story and now he is ready to tell another  story and so on for endless narration, because these  tales are his life.  He is participant of these dramatic  appearances. For such typ of story most  suitable would be the genre of  travelling and instinct does not  treason to writer. It is’t surprising that the chief narrator is traveler. The writer defenses orders that is typical for this genre. He narrates in detail, but choices every information with  very carefully.

The chain of  tidings are represented  emotional and logical. The model of structure  of art time is classics. The reader follows  intention of author and  participate in depicted events.

In the story by Jemal Karchkhadze, basically, is the likeness with well-known literary,  philosophic and religious  texts of  traveling genre, but the manner of  narration is very realistic, but, probably, there  was  temptation and themes gives possibility, that the author will create the distance with reader by the modernistic or postmodernistic narration elements.  The writer choose the way of traditional and experienced with the purpose, the reader can easily find identity with himself and  with personages. In this point, his manner of narration like Ilia Chavchavadze, who was very closely with his personages and was talking with them and with readers as well: ~Reader, Why is you looking so sad?~ (Chavchavadze 1985: 276)

The reading of fiction Umberto Eco considered to participate  some kind of games, that gives a chanse to reader to comprehend endless of  diversity of phenomenon, that passes in real or imagine world. There are intertextual dialogues in Jemal karchkhadze’s story. Eko writes about Intertextual dialogues: “I understand under the intertextual dialogue phenomenon, which in this text echoes revoked earlier texts. We will not do now forms intertextuality . For example, I do not see the stylistic citations - those cases where the text quotes, more or less explicitly the style, method of narration, which is typical of another author, whether in the guise of parody or out of respect for the great, all the acknowledged master. There are involuntary quotes that the author himself is not aware of that are the natural result of the game artistic influences. There are also quotes the author is perfectly aware of this, but the consumer does not notice them”(Eco 2010: 12).

Jemal karchkhadze depicts the inner life of his personages. According M. Bakhtin’s researches, “The inner life of another, I worry as the soul in itself, I live in the spirit. Soul - an image of the entire population actually experienced, of all cash in my soul in time, whereas the spirit - all the semantic significances, the focus of life, origin of acts of itself (without detracting from me). From the standpoint of self-feeling intuitively convincing semantic immortality of the spirit, with terms of experience I have is convincing the other postulate of the immortality of the soul that is inside another certainty - the internal face of it (the memory) - a favorite addition to the meaning (as well as the postulate of immortality beloved flesh - Dante). Soul, undergoing the inside, is spirit, and he vneestetichen (as vneestetichno and experienced inside the body), the spirit can not be the bearer of the plot, because it generally is not, at any given moment, he asked, still, calm within himself to do the impossible: No points, no border, period, no support for the rhythm and absolute emotionally positive measure, it may not be the bearer of rhythm (and presentation, general aesthetic order). Soul - not carried out the spirit, reflected in a loving consciousness of another (man of God) , is something with which I myself have nothing to do, what I passive retseptiven (inside the soul can only be ashamed of themselves, outside, it can be beautiful and naive)”  (Bakhtin 2010: 8)

Of course, readers attention attract to main narrator Bartolomeo, his  conversation is very eloquence. his manner of  talks is  simply, intelligible, lightly, but impressionable and exciting. He perceives and estimate humanity and  appearance in unusual ways. Bartolomeo  is fond of traveling and he have seen many  countries. He knows  various foreign languages. Bartolomeo in old age lives in solitude and began  to write about that, what he saw. He built the house, where was differenT rooms, that depicted some foreign country: “furnishings was according tradition” (Karchkhadze 1987: 241))

Bartolomeo wants to share his experience with another. To write a book is the his essence of life. The writer knows, that  foreigner can more objectively estimate situation in the country, than inhabitant. Georgian life is depicted by the foreign personages, first of all, by  Antonio.

In the beginning of story the writer mentioned to literature myth, that is created by himself.  whole story is the In the beginning of story the writer mentioned to literature myth, that create himself.  whole story is the mystification of the book, that wrote bartolomeo and this story is only one fragment. It means, that the main book is whole  creation of Jemal Karchkhadze.

Basic problem of Jemal Karchkhadze is like William Faulkner expresed Nobel Prize Speech, when he said: ~Our tragedy today is a general and universal physical fear so long sustained by now that we can even bear it. There are no longer problems of the spirit.

There is only one question: When will I be blown up? Because of this, the young man or woman writing today has forgotten the problems of the human heart in conflict with itself which alone can make good writing because only that is worth writing about, worth the agony and the sweat. He must learn them again. He must teach himself that the basest of all things is to be afraid: and, teaching himself that, forget it forever, leaving no room in his workshop for anything but the old verities and truths of the heart, the universal truths lacking which any story is ephemeral and doomed--love and honor and pity and pride and compassion and sacrifice. Until he does so, he labors under a curse. He writes not of love but of lust, of defeats in which nobody loses anything of value, and victories without hope and worst of all, without pity or compassion. His griefs grieve on no universal bones, leaving no scars. He writes not of the heart but of the glands~ ( Faulkner 2010: 1).


  1.  Bakhtin 2010: Bakhtin M. The author and the hero in aesthetic activity. The problem of the author's attitude toward the hero; (in Russian)

  2. Chavchavadze 1985: Chavchavadze Ilia,”Man-human?!” Tbilisi, 1985 (in Georgian)

  3. Eco 2010: Eco Umberto, Innovation and repetition. Between the aesthetics of modernism and postmodernism; (in english)

  4. Faulkner 2010: Faulkner William, Nobel Prize Speech; Stockholm, Sweden
    December 10, 1950 (in English)

  5. Karchkhadze 1987: Karchkhadze Jemal, `Antonio and David`, Tbilisi, 1987, (in Georgian)



Volume 4, Issue 1


Rustaveli Institute of Georgian Literature

Georgian Electronic Journal of Literature