Category Archives: performance

The Yahapalanaya Government in Strife: Philips, Hattotuwa and Chandraprema Analyse the Situation

I. Rajan Philips: “The government’s consummate crisis in the face of Mahinda’s unconsummatable win,” Sunday Island, 18 February 2018,

There is no pussyfooting around the political shellacking at last week’s polls, that the President’s and the Prime Minister’s teams got at the hands of Mahinda Rajapaksa’s budding party of old bloomers. Not surprisingly, the shellacking has precipitated a consummate crisis in the so called national-unity government. While the results of the local government elections have created the current crisis in the national government, the same results cannot provide any mechanism or mandate for resolving that crisis. Nor can the impressively lopsided success at the local elections directly enable Mahinda Rajapaksa to replace the government at the national level. Put another way, SLPP cannot nationally consummate its aggregate win at the local elections. It can, however, create havoc for the unity government and it is doing so in spades. The government leaders, on the other hand, are scrambling with no one showing any capacity to take control of the situation and restore even a semblance of order. Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under electoral structures, governance, historical interpretation, landscape wondrous, legal issues, life stories, patriotism, performance, political demonstrations, politIcal discourse, power politics, Presidential elections, self-reflexivity, Sinhala-Tamil Relations, social justice, sri lankan society, taking the piss, trauma, truth as casualty of war, unusual people, world affairs

Encountering Prejudice in Lanka as a Person of Mixed Descent

Krystle Reid, from Groundviews, http://groundviews.org/author/krystle-reid/  where the title is “A Welcoming Nation”

The following is a list of things I’m often asked or told, revealing of Sri Lankan perceptions about the Burgher community.

  1. Are you Sri Lankan?
  2. Can you speak in Sinhalese?
  3. ‘You’re a Burgher? You sure don’t look like one’
  4. ‘Sounds like a Las Vegas stripper name’
  5. ‘They get drunk every Saturday and go to church the next day, no shame’
  6. ‘Burghers? Parents must be divorced then.’
  7. ‘Lansi no? Probably got the job because of her English and the mini skirt’
  8. ‘Burgher…. like a hamburger?’

I could continue but the real point I was trying to make is that 70 years after independence, our ethnicity is still misunderstood. Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under accountability, centre-periphery relations, communal relations, cultural transmission, democratic measures, discrimination, disparagement, economic processes, education, education policy, ethnicity, female empowerment, governance, heritage, historical interpretation, island economy, landscape wondrous, life stories, meditations, modernity & modernization, performance, politIcal discourse, power politics, racist thinking, Rajapaksa regime, reconciliation, religiosity, self-reflexivity, Sinhala-Tamil Relations, slanted reportage, social justice, Sri Lankan cricket, sri lankan society, the imaginary and the real, tolerance, travelogue, truth as casualty of war, unusual people, vengeance, working class conditions, world events & processes

Neville Weereratne: the Artist and his Distant Homeland

Tony Donaldson

This essay on the life and art of Neville Weereratne is based on interviews recorded in Melbourne in July 2014 and from material collected during fieldwork in Australia and Sri Lanka.

 Neville Weereratne.

The artist and author Neville Weereratne died in Melbourne on 3 January 2018 at the age of 86. He was born in Colombo on 3 December 1931. A Sinhalese by descent and the youngest of five siblings, he began drawing at about the age of six. He grew up in a Roman Catholic family in Hulftsdorp, near to the Supreme and Magistrate courts, but their home was requisitioned by the civil authorities in World War 2 and so the family moved into a house in Dehiwela owned by the Peries family (Ivan and Lester).

Continue reading

1 Comment

Filed under art & allure bewitching, cultural transmission, heritage, historical interpretation, Indian traditions, landscape wondrous, life stories, meditations, performance, religiosity, self-reflexivity, sri lankan society, unusual people, working class conditions

Queen Elizabeth at Trinity in 1954

Sheshan Abeysekara in Trinity College web site, where the title is “Queen Elizabeth II’s visit to Trinity in 1954”

Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II must have fond memories of her first visit to Sri Lanka in 1954.  As well as visiting Colombo during the ten days she spent here, she also visited Kandy to watch the Perahera, and while there, she was felicitated at the grounds of Trinity College Kandy before she was escorted to the historical “Magul Maduwa” to be welcomed by a delegation of Kandyan Chiefs.

QUEEN_AT_TRINITY_1954_-2_

Picture: “The Mayor of Kandy welcoming the Queen at  the Trinity College main entrance drive.” | Picture Credits: GettyIma

Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under British colonialism, Buddhism, cultural transmission, education, heritage, historical interpretation, landscape wondrous, life stories, performance, self-reflexivity, sri lankan society, unusual people, world events & processes

Two Reflections on the Galle Literary Fest of 2008

Michael Roberts, on 9th February 2008

ONE: GALLE LIT UP: FROM THE RIGHT FLANK

As a moderator and panelist participating in the Galle Literary Festival held between the 15th and 20th January 2008, my commentary is biased. It is doubly biased. I was born and nourished within the walls of the Fort in Galle, a site that cast a magic spell on the literary fare all and sundry encountered during these heady days.

 with my sister at Girl’s Bathing Place … and as Little bum Mike on the way home

Continue reading

2 Comments

Filed under art & allure bewitching, cultural transmission, economic processes, education, ethnicity, heritage, historical interpretation, Indian traditions, landscape wondrous, life stories, literary achievements, meditations, modernity & modernization, patriotism, performance, pilgrimages, plural society, politIcal discourse, press freedom, self-reflexivity, sri lankan society, teaching profession, the imaginary and the real, tolerance, tourism, transport and communications, travelogue, unusual people, world events & processes

Seth, Vidal et al at the Galle Lit-Fest in 2008

Vikram Seth in demand …

Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under architects & architecture, art & allure bewitching, cultural transmission, education, heritage, historical interpretation, Indian traditions, island economy, landscape wondrous, life stories, literary achievements, meditations, modernity & modernization, Muslims in Lanka, performance, politIcal discourse, self-reflexivity, sri lankan society, unusual people, world events & processes

Roundtable Investment Forum with Sovereign Wealth Funds in Colombo

Island Report, 11 January 2018

Malik Samarawickrama, Minister of Development Strategies and International Trade opened a two day Roundtable Investment Forum with Sovereign Wealth Funds (SWFs) in Colombo yesterday under the patronage of the Prime Minister.

The Roundtable was an initiative by the minister following his visit to the Global Investment Forum in Dubai during November 2017 and is jointly hosted by the Central Bank of Sri Lanka and the Board of Investment. He met several of these Funds in Dubai and they were enthused by the potential of Sri Lanka as an investment destination. The fact that so many SWFs accepted the invitation to participate in the Roundtable at short notice was a validation of our nation’s value proposition and its increasing attractiveness due to the current economic policies under adoption, a press release said. Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under accountability, China and Chinese influences, commoditification, economic processes, foreign policy, governance, Indian Ocean politics, island economy, landscape wondrous, modernity & modernization, performance, sri lankan society, world events & processes