Category Archives: racist thinking

The Christchurch Killer’s Dungeon of a Mind

ONE = Greg Sheridan: “A Manifesto for a Dark Age,” in The Australian, 23 March 2019

The manifesto of Brenton Tarrant, the alleged Christchurch gunman, displays an extreme contemporary embodiment of six historical trends. It is the mirror in morality, personality and rhetoric of the archetypal Islamic State terrorist. It is the inheritor of the most extreme traditions of white racism, both the North American tradition and its Germanic cousin. Its outlook is crippled by an addiction to conspiracy theories of a type long familiar, especially in the modern US.

Brenton Tarrant with his father Rodney.

Brenton Tarrant as a youth with his father Rodney n 2006

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Christchurch Hate Killings and the Hate Arising from the Digana Contretemps: Editorial Reflections

Editorial in the Sunday Observer of Sri Lanka, 17 March 2019, entitledChristchurch and our own national experience”

Blood is being spilt with the claim of protecting one’s own ‘flesh and blood.’ It happened last Friday in Christchurch, in usually quiet New Zealand; it has happened in this country in sustained internal conflict over decades; and, it has happened all over the world throughout human history.

The gloom instilled by this litany is, however, dispelled by the bright success of societies in overcoming violence between communities, in managing conflict and, channelling social energies toward civilisational attainment. Happy are the societies that are warmly inclusive, that bravely embrace differentiation and unfamiliarity. Happy are those who celebrate co-existence and avoid or resolve the disruptions between groups, between people. Continue reading

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From Individual Atom to God Almighty

From Individual Atom to God Almighty

Michael Roberts

 With the growth of Western civilization from the 16th century onwards and its sweeping sway in the world today, we have seen the power vested in the individual atom known as “man” in its non-gendered sense. Individuation, and its blood-brother, egoism, is the warp and woof of everyday living in most parts of the world and is most pronounced in the states identified with the “West.”

Christchurch killer in court

It is imprinted and glorified in many sports competitions: say, surfing, marathon-running, motor-cycling, gymnastics, et cetera. Its imprint has been expanded by new technology such as skateboards and fancy bikes. There are also age-old sports which sustain the emphasis on intense individual action: for instance, fishing and hunting.

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Deciphering Chauvinism through Incidents of Confrontation

Michael Roberts

In recently facing up to internet challenges and clarifying the term “chauvinism,” I proceeded at a general level and presented definitions within a comparative framework that brought the concepts of “racism” and “tribalism” into our framework of analysis.[1] I now provide instances of ethno-religious confrontation from Sri Lankan history that illustrate this phenomenon.

Pics from Gerald Peiris 2017

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Addressing  “Chauvinism” and  Primacy in Modern Lanka

Michael Roberts

After I presented an old article in which I displayed and criticised the rantings of a Sinhala extremist named Chand Wijeywickrema (a Peradeniya graduate of my vintage), I was directly challenged by two Facebook members to clarify my depiction of Wijey (and like others) as “chauvinists” – or, in this situation, as Sinhala chauvinists.

Rather than heading immediately for a dictionary, I decided to explore the issue by raising the question with my tennis mates, mostly Australians from university or professional backgrounds and thus from the West. The term “chauvinism” generated puzzlement. It was not part of their immediate political vocabulary and a few of them referred to “male chauvinism” – immediately referring to recent trends of female emancipation and the feminist criticism of male dominance.

Ah, dominance! That is one clue in our assessment of the term.

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Hatreds. Chasms. Bill Deutrom’s Insights on the Political Impasse in Sri Lanka

Michael Roberts, courtesy of Colombo Telegraph, 15 December 2018, where the title is different

    pro-UNP rally

Email Note from Bill Deutrom in Lanka to Michael Roberts, 8 Dec 2018

Thank you, Michael for your amazing collection of articles on the Eelam War and its aftermath as well as the present political impasse. Alas, they will not convince people who have already made up their mind based on emotion, ethnicity or with a hatred for Rajapaksa. Continue reading

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Potency, Power and People in Groups– British Ceylon to Modern Times via Pictures

  Penance on road, Sri Maurpthy Pathirikaali Temple, 2009

This book is both a display and a reflective exercise on the power of imagery, whether from camera or painting or etching. Images can be as captivating as seductive as misleading.  They can serve as raw data that provides glimpses of facets of life lost to the modern generations. They must, of course, be deployed by social scientists with attention to context and in association with other forms of data.

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