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TBILISI, Georgia — In the Republic of Georgia and throughout the Caucasus one commonly hears people say, “Be quiet, woman, when a man speaks.” Sexism of the old school is a thing of the present here, and that is exactly why the election of Salome Zurabishvili as the first woman president in the region’s modern history sets an important example. Gender equality was legislated in Georgia a dozen years ago. This would seem, at last, to be proof of concept.

But rejoicing has been restrained. The campaign was vicious, full of calls for violence, savage criticism and death threats, Zurabishvili told The Daily Beast in an exclusive interview soon after the election commission announced she had won with a convincing 59.5 percent of the vote.

Comfortably elegant in a purple velvet jacket as we sat and talked around a table with members of her family, this 66-year-old head of state has a history that bears little resemblance to that of her male rivals.

Read more at The Daily Beast.

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Author: By Anna Nemtsova