Sajeeva Samaranayake presents his considered thoughts on the discussions associated with Geedreck Usvatte-Aratchi’s National Trust talk on “Sinhala Attitudes to Knowledge” – which appeared in the Island as well as Thuppahi in August 2017. Emphasis in blue is that of The Editor, Thuppahi; but the black highlights are the author’s.
In the following note I am setting out the findings of Dr. Usvatte Arachchi, my comments thereon and some questions that arise. This is to help move this discussion forward as it appears to be a very critical inquiry into our collective capacity as a Sinhalese speech community.
Filed under British colonialism, Buddhism, centre-periphery relations, cultural transmission, economic processes, education, evolution of languages(s), governance, heritage, historical interpretation, Indian traditions, island economy, language policies, life stories, literary achievements, politIcal discourse, religiosity, self-reflexivity, sri lankan society, world events & processes
The Newsletter of the International Institute of Asian Studies at Leiden reveals the interests of two recent Fellows at IIAS who have been delving into Sri Lankan issues in recent times. Herewith some summaries
Giacomo Mantovan is of Italian lineage:
“My research in social anthropology, which focuses on individuals and their relations with their social milieu, and in particular with state authorities, aims to grasp how certain critical times, such as civil war, exile, and illness, become moments of construction of subjectivity and memory.” Continue reading
Filed under cultural transmission, education, governance, historical interpretation, island economy, life stories, LTTE, modernity & modernization, politIcal discourse, power politics, prabhakaran, Rajapaksa regime, rehabilitation, religiosity, self-reflexivity, Sinhala-Tamil Relations, sri lankan society, Tamil migration, tamil refugees, Tamil Tiger fighters, unusual people, vengeance, war reportage, world events & processes
Dayan Jayatilleka, in Island, 6 October 2017, with title “The rise of the Sinhala fundamentalist new right: Response to Prof GH Peiris” … the emphasis below being that of the Editor Thuppahi
Philosophy, said Kautilya (Chanakya) in the Arthashathra, deals primarily with the right and wrong use of force. At least from that time, it was recognized that there is a right way and a wrong way of doing even what is necessary or unavoidable. This was of course the very premise of the Just War doctrine of Christian theologians St Ambrose, St. Augustine and St. Thomas Aquinas. A war had to be for the right cause and the right cause was not self-evident or merely self-referential and self–proclaimed. It needed to pass certain criteria to qualify. This too was not enough. For war to be just it not only needed to satisfy the criteria for a just cause but be fought by just means, which too needed to meet certain criteria to warrant the appellation. Modern theologians, especially of the Protestant persuasion, have added a third criterion, that of Just Peace, i.e. of the outcome of the war.
Filed under accountability, Buddhism, China and Chinese influences, communal relations, constitutional amendments, devolution, economic processes, fundamentalism, governance, historical interpretation, Indian Ocean politics, island economy, politIcal discourse, power politics, Sinhala-Tamil Relations, sri lankan society, unusual people, world events & processes
Ravi Velloor,, in The Island, 15 September 2017, where the title reads “Rohingya issue and the danger to South-east Asia” … with highlighting being the work of The Editor, Thuppahi
Not since the landlocked Buddhist kingdom of Bhutan swept out its Nepali-speaking Hindu population in the late 1980s has Asia witnessed as relentless an action against a minority group as seen lately in Myanmar. The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) has called the sustained drive to push Rohingya Muslims out of Myanmar a “textbook example of ethnic cleansing”. Continue reading
Filed under accountability, asylum-seekers, atrocities, Buddhism, communal relations, discrimination, disparagement, economic processes, ethnicity, fundamentalism, governance, historical interpretation, IDP camps, Islamic fundamentalism, life stories, LTTE, politIcal discourse, power politics, Sinhala-Tamil Relations, sri lankan society, truth as casualty of war, Uncategorized, vengeance, women in ethnic conflcits, working class conditions, world events & processes
Gerald H. Peiris … an original article with emphasis in black being that of the author and that in blue being an imposition by The Editor, Thuppahi
Several articles by Dr. Dayan Jayatilleke published in The Island during the past few days indicate that he is very definitely the most articulate and, arguably, the most “intermestic” exponent of the notion of the ’13th Amendment’ (implemented more comprehensively than at present with all powers and functions referred to in its Ninth Schedule vested on Provincial Councils – PCs) being the constitutional via media that would ensure stability, good governance and interethnic harmony. Dr DJ is no doubt aware that, following the misguided curtailment of Presidential powers through the 19th Amendment of the Constitution in 2015, alongside the practice of foreign agents including diplomatic personnel bypassing the Colombo government in their transactions with the ‘Northern PC’ emerging an unofficial ‘convention’ in Sri Lanka’s external relations, his prescription would actually entail the creation of a more autonomous network of PCs than envisioned at the promulgation of the 13th Amendment thirty years ago. Continue reading
Filed under american imperialism, centre-periphery relations, China and Chinese influences, constitutional amendments, democratic measures, devolution, economic processes, electoral structures, foreign policy, governance, historical interpretation, Indian Ocean politics, island economy, landscape wondrous, legal issues, modernity & modernization, politIcal discourse, power politics, security, self-reflexivity, Sinhala-Tamil Relations, sri lankan society, Tamil civilians, truth as casualty of war, welfare & philanthophy, world events & processes
Peter Fuhrman, courtesy of Beyonf Brics where the title is “China-owned port in Sri Lanka could alter trade routes”
Much has been said — but far less is understood — about the One Belt One Road (OBOR) initiative, the centrepiece of Xi Jin ping’s expansive foreign policy. That Mr. Xi has ambitions to extend across Eurasia China’s commercial, political and military power is not in doubt.But, the precise details on OBOR remain just about as unclear now as they did four years ago the policy was unveiled — which countries are included, how much cash China will invest or lend, where are the first-order priority projects, will any of the trillions of dollars of proposed China-owned port in Sri Lanka could alter trade routes, will spending achieve commercial rates of return? Questions multiply. Answers are few.
Filed under China and Chinese influences, commoditification, economic processes, governance, historical interpretation, Indian Ocean politics, landscape wondrous, modernity & modernization, politIcal discourse, power politics, sri lankan society, world events & processes