Category Archives: modernity & modernization

Stanley Jayaweera as Sturdy Administrator & Diplomat – An Evaluation and Vale from a Son

Rajeewa Jayaweera, in Sunday Island, 2 February 2020, where the title runs – A bygone era diplomat of perspicacity. A third-year remembrance of my father”

‘If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,
Or walk with Kings—nor lose the common touch’ – Rudyard Kipling

My father, Stanley Robert Jayaweera (SJ), passed away on February 4, 2017, four months short of his 90th birthday. Over the last couple of years, I have penned several articles of his work, besides one in May 2017, of the different phases in our father-son relationship. This article would be the last. As memories begin to fade, they too need to be reposed.

Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under accountability, centre-periphery relations, cultural transmission, education, foreign policy, governance, heritage, historical interpretation, life stories, modernity & modernization, patriotism, performance, politIcal discourse, power politics, self-reflexivity, sri lankan society, travelogue, unusual people, world events & processes

Today’s Bureaucratic Subservience in Sri Lanka: The Tale of Its Emergence and Entrenchment

H. L. Seneviratne reviewing Your Obedient Servant: The Fate of the Bureaucrat in Sri Lanka by Suren Sumithraarachchi, Sarasavi Publishers 2019 …. Courtesy of Colombo Telegraph = https://www.colombotelegraph.com/index.php/book-review-politics-the-bureaucracy/

This book deals with the higher bureaucracy in Sri Lanka, and its focus is bureaucratic behavior. It is about local bureaucrats, not those of British origin — bureaucrats who historically inhabited the bureaucratic terrain with decreasing density as colonial rule waned. It considers loyalty to a set of rules, rather than to a person, the marker of ideal bureaucratic behavior, one that the vocabulary of sociology calls “rational-legal”.

Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under accountability, British colonialism, centre-periphery relations, cultural transmission, democratic measures, economic processes, education, governance, historical interpretation, island economy, language policies, life stories, modernity & modernization, performance, politIcal discourse, power politics, self-reflexivity, sri lankan society, welfare & philanthophy, world events & processes

Everyday Scenes from Sri Lanka, January 2020

Vistas The Ordinary, the Daily and The Greenery from the Camera Lens wielded by young Asela Atukorala of Adelaide

Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under heritage, landscape wondrous, modernity & modernization, photography

Becoming and Being Sri Lankan: The National Anthem in Our Mother Tongues

Eranda Ginige, on in Lanka News Web, 6 January 2020, where the title is “The Language of the National Anthem”

The Dominion of Ceylon was formed on 4 February 1948 with the singing of Britain’s national anthem “God Save the King” and it continued to be the anthem for another four years

Continue reading

2 Comments

Filed under accountability, authoritarian regimes, British colonialism, communal relations, constitutional amendments, cultural transmission, discrimination, education policy, ethnicity, governance, heritage, historical interpretation, language policies, Left politics, legal issues, life stories, modernity & modernization, performance, politIcal discourse, power politics, reconciliation, self-reflexivity, Sinhala-Tamil Relations, sri lankan society, teaching profession, unusual people, world events & processes

The Insights etched within Walter Fernando’s Autobiography of an Administrative Career

Gerald H Peiris, in The Island, 1 January 2020, where the title runs thus“Career Challenges of a Public Servant”

Among the treasures in my collection of books there are several biographical works received as gifts ―those of Ediriweera Sarachchandra, Gunadasa Amarasekara, Kingsley de Silva, Usvatte Aratchchi, Jolly Somasundram, Sudath Gunasekara and Walter Fernando. All of us belonged to the Peradeniya segment of the University of Ceylon in the 1950s which, over a brief and exhilarating spell, seemed to fulfill the expectations of its founders in epitomising the long awaited national resurgence, offering an acceptable blend of ‘intellectual’ and ‘utilitarian’ perspectives of higher learning. Since then we have travelled along different paths that merged and diverged at various times. Now in our old age we have shared memories of both joy and sorrow.

Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under accountability, British colonialism, cultural transmission, education, governance, historical interpretation, life stories, modernity & modernization, politIcal discourse, power politics, self-reflexivity, Sinhala-Tamil Relations, sri lankan society, Tamil migration, tamil refugees, unusual people, world events & processes

Sri Lanka’s Non-Alignment Today in the Midst of China-US Tussles

Asoka Amaratunga, from The Island, 13 December 2019, where the title runs“Non-alignment relating to Chinese and US aid” ….. with emphasis being the work of The Editor, Thuppahi

asoka pic

Map & Scheme from Hariharan article cited below

First let us take a look at non-alignment, which third world countries like to invoke when confronted with world power rivalry. The Non-aligned Movement was based on the principles suggested at the Bandung conference in Indonesia in 1955, and then formally adopted by a Declaration in Bruin Islands in Yugoslavia in 1956 on the initiation by Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru and President Tito, where the member countries adopted a resolution in condemnation of hegemonic practices by the US and other countries, and criticism of the UN for being dominated by the US. The leadership for the movement was provided by Jawaharlal Nehru, President Tito, Sukarno and Nasser.

Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under american imperialism, authoritarian regimes, centre-periphery relations, China and Chinese influences, cultural transmission, economic processes, foreign policy, governance, historical interpretation, Indian Ocean politics, island economy, landscape wondrous, legal issues, modernity & modernization, patriotism, politIcal discourse, power politics, security, self-reflexivity, slanted reportage, sri lankan society, transport and communications, world events & processes

An Indonesian evaluates the R2P Interventions

Agung Wasono: “The Responsibility to Protect and State Sovereignty,”  http://www.agungwasono.com/2016/06/the-responsibility-to-protect-r2p-and.html#

Crisis in Syria – Implementation of R2P 

Introduction: This article discusses the criticism to the Responsibility to Protect (R2P) and more specifically on the debate of its relationship to State sovereignty. This article is divided into four main parts: the first part discusses the background of R2P including its pillars and principles, the second part discusses the different understanding of sovereignty in the context of national and international relations, the third part explores the debates on R2P and sovereignty, and last but not least is the conclusion. Overall, I found that criticisms to R2P are mostly addressed to its imperfect implementation instead of its principles. I argue that the difference concepts of State sovereignty should not be contested each other. In addition, R2P should also be understood in a comprehensive approach by considering all pillars and principles.

Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under accountability, american imperialism, centre-periphery relations, conspiracies, economic processes, foreign policy, governance, historical interpretation, Indian Ocean politics, landscape wondrous, law of armed conflict, legal issues, modernity & modernization, politIcal discourse, power politics, security, self-reflexivity, truth as casualty of war, war reportage, world events & processes

Evaluating Gotabaya’s Early Moves — Rajeewa Jayaweera

Rajeewa Jayaweera, Island, 7 December 2019, where the title is “Gotabaya Rajapaksa Presidency: some positives, negatives and challenges”

For all intent and purposes, President Gotabaya Rajapaksa’s (GR) recently concluded state visit to India, his first as Head of State is considered a success. A one on one meeting scheduled for 15 minutes had lasted one hour. During this time, both leaders have supposedly found common ground and established a personal rapport, so essential in relations between countries, especially between countries with a history of thorny periods.

The newly elected Sri Lankan President, in his inaugural speech stated, “we want to be neutral and stay out of conflicts amongst the world powers.” While in India, he reiterated his intention to renegotiate the 99-year lease with state-controlled China Merchants Port Holdings which would have no doubt pleased his hosts.

Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under accountability, centre-periphery relations, communal relations, economic processes, ethnicity, export issues, foreign policy, governance, historical interpretation, Indian Ocean politics, island economy, life stories, modernity & modernization, politIcal discourse, power politics, self-reflexivity, Sinhala-Tamil Relations, sri lankan society, transport and communications, welfare & philanthophy, world events & processes

World Giants Face-to-Face in Economic Warfare

Martin Wolf  Martin Wolf, in Financial Review, 5 June 2019, with this title “Prepare for the 100-year war between the US and China” with underlining emphasis added by The Editor, Thuppahi
The disappearance of the Soviet Union left a big hole. The “war on terror” was an inadequate replacement. But China ticks all boxes. For the US, it can be the ideological, military and economic enemy many need. Here at last is a worthwhile opponent. That was the main conclusion I drew from this year’s Bilderberg meetings. Across-the-board rivalry with China is becoming an organising principle of US economic, foreign and security policies. 
cartoon imported from https://www.scmp.com/comment/opinion/article/3018284/why-chinas-current-trade-war-strategy-keep-calm-and-make-new

Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under accountability, american imperialism, authoritarian regimes, China and Chinese influences, foreign policy, historical interpretation, Indian Ocean politics, landscape wondrous, military strategy, modernity & modernization, politIcal discourse, power politics, propaganda, security, self-reflexivity, the imaginary and the real, transport and communications, truth as casualty of war, unusual people, world events & processes

To Gotabaya: Wishes, Warnings and Thoughts from The Sunday Times

The Editor, Sunday Times, 1 December 2019

This is the ‘honeymoon’ period for a newly elected first term President, still riding the wave of popularity from the election victory of November 16. Even the media are expected to give the new President time to settle down, and some leeway to carry out his campaign promises and fulfil the expectations of his new office. This is not, however, to say that no comments ought to be made on the performance of the new administration during this period.

Continue reading

1 Comment

Filed under accountability, authoritarian regimes, China and Chinese influences, economic processes, foreign policy, historical interpretation, Indian Ocean politics, island economy, landscape wondrous, legal issues, life stories, modernity & modernization, politIcal discourse, power politics, Rajapaksa regime, security, self-reflexivity, Sinhala-Tamil Relations, sri lankan society, transport and communications, welfare & philanthophy, world events & processes