Evgenya Zakharova - Male Friendship and Honor on the Birzhas of Tbilisi
Tbilisi birzhas are associated not only with tough guys, street code and the obsession with sunflower seeds, but also with 'dzmakatsoba' – the specific form of male friendship.
When discussing 'dzmakatsoba' with Georgians you can often hear that with its special high values and obligations of friends to each other this form of friendship is unparalleled in other cultures. From the case of dzmakatsoba we learn how friendship may resemble kin relations, become subjected to ideology and act as an instrument of social status and control.
Evgenia Zakharova is a researcher at the Peter the Great Museum of Anthropology and Ethnography (the Kunstkamera), Russian Academy of Sciences. In 2017 she obtained her doctoral degree in anthropology with her dissertation entitled "Men's Neighborhood Communities of Tbilisi: structure and functioning," which discusses the Georgian street as a social, political, and legal phenomenon".