Category Archives: teaching profession

Nationalist Studies and the Ceylon Studies Seminar at Peradeniya, 1968-1970s

Michael Roberts

The years 1966 to 1975 were heady days in Ceylon. Especially so for some of us in Peradeniya Univeristy where the CEYLON STUDIES SEMINAR was launched in November 1968 by a few members of the Arts Faculty assisted by the facilities provided by Professor Gananath Obeyesekera at the Sociology Department – located then on Lower Hantane Road away from the centre of teaching. Not least among these facilities was the service provided by the Sociology Department peon Sathiah[i] who cyclostyled the written seminar papers beforehand for circulation so that those who were keen could read any presentation beforehand if they so wished – a procedure that also maximized discussion time. This background service was seconded by the typing services of Mrs Hettiarachchi in the History Department and Mr Kumaraswamy in the Sociology Department.

A . Jeyaratnam Wilson  Gananath Obeyesekera

Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under accountability, British imperialism, caste issues, centre-periphery relations, communal relations, cultural transmission, disparagement, education, historical interpretation, language policies, Left politics, life stories, literary achievements, nationalism, parliamentary elections, politIcal discourse, power politics, self-reflexivity, Sinhala-Tamil Relations, sri lankan society, teaching profession, unusual people

Beware the Global Human Rights Mafia and Their Sri Lankan Parrots

C. A. Chandraprema, in Island, September 2018, with this title “Cardinal’s words and Mangala’s response”.… the highlighting is the work of the Editor, Thuppahi

The comments made by Malcolm Cardinal Ranjith last Sunday at the Ekala St Matthew’s Church have made waves with Minister Mangala Samaraweera and Saliya Peiris criticising the Cardinal’s words and the former President Mahinda Rajapaksa and several Catholic MPs in the Joint Opposition condemning Samaraweera and Peiris for taking on the Cardinal. What the Cardinal said last Sunday during a sermon delivered in Sinhala was roughly as follows.

“The latest religion in the West is the religion called human rights. Human rights were discovered only recently. It is being regarded as a wonderful new discovery which is being held aloft and we are being relentlessly lectured about it. However our people began adhering to religions centuries ago. Some people in our country talk of a secular society. Human life is not just food and drink and the pursuit of comfort. Many people in the West now regard religion as an outer garment. They use religion when it suits them but if they are required to make sacrifices, they put religion aside. Our lives are short and if we limit it to the pursuit of pleasure we will come to an unfortunate end. If we adhere to a religion we don’t need human rights. Those who are dependent on human rights are those who have no religion. We must not be misled by these chimeras. We must look at this intelligently.”

Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under accountability, american imperialism, atrocities, authoritarian regimes, cultural transmission, democratic measures, education policy, fundamentalism, governance, human rights, legal issues, life stories, politIcal discourse, power politics, self-reflexivity, slanted reportage, sri lankan society, teaching profession, the imaginary and the real, truth as casualty of war, unusual people, vengeance, war crimes, world events & processes

Digs for Ancient Chinese Artefacts in Jaffna and South

Zhang Kun, in China Daily … taken up by News-in-Asia, 16 August 2018, where the title is “Sino-Lankan archaeologists look for Chinese artifacts buried in Jaffna”

Archaeologists from the Shanghai Museum embarked on a 40-day excavation mission to Sri Lanka on Monday. The group will be working in ancient ruins in Jaffna alongside representatives from the Central Cultural Fund and a local university in Sri Lanka.

the archeologists’ team from the Shanghai Museum

Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under China and Chinese influences, cultural transmission, landscape wondrous, life stories, sri lankan society, teaching profession, transport and communications, world events & processes

Awful Events in July ’83: Will We Ever Learn

Harim Peiris, in Daily News, 23 July 2018, where the title reads “‘Never again’: The enduring lesson of July 1983, after 35 years” …. with highlights being the work of The Editor, Thuppahi

July 23 marked the 35th anniversary of one of post-independent Sri Lanka’s darkest chapters, the July 1983 pogrom against Tamil civilians throughout the country. The pogrom was sparked by an ambush of an Army patrol in Jaffna, by the LTTE, then one of several militant groups operating in the North, in which the entire platoon of 13 soldiers was wiped out.

Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under accountability, atrocities, authoritarian regimes, communal relations, democratic measures, disparagement, economic processes, ethnicity, fundamentalism, historical interpretation, jihad, landscape wondrous, law of armed conflict, life stories, LTTE, performance, politIcal discourse, power politics, Rajapaksa regime, religiosity, self-reflexivity, Sinhala-Tamil Relations, slanted reportage, sri lankan society, Tamil migration, tamil refugees, teaching profession, truth as casualty of war, vengeance, violence of language, welfare & philanthophy, world affairs

Fr. S G Perera: A Pioneer Historian in Modern Times

Chryshane Mendis, in the 20th Century Historian Series …… https://www.archaeology.lk/6055

The student of the colonial history of Sri Lanka has undoubtedly come upon the name of S. G. Perera in their studies. Fr. S. G. Perera, a Catholic Priest of the Society of Jesus was an exemplary scholar of the last century and whose parallels are unheard of. Publishing over a dozen books and over 300 articles in journals, his contributions to the history of the Catholic Church in Sri Lanka and the history of the Portuguese, Dutch and British periods of the island have aided the development of historical knowledge to a great extent in Sri Lanka; what could be called his magnum opus, the translation of the ‘Conquista’ of the 17th century Portuguese historian Fr. Queyroz, is the single most important Portuguese literary work which is the basis for any historical study on the Portuguese period. His proficiency of the Portuguese language gave him access to numerous original sources which he has translated and made available to the public is part of the wonderful legacy of this great historian of Lanka.

 Fr. S. G. Perera (image from The Aloysian 1946-1950, Volume 06, No. 03)

Continue reading

3 Comments

Filed under British colonialism, cultural transmission, economic processes, education, ethnicity, heritage, historical interpretation, Indian Ocean politics, island economy, landscape wondrous, life stories, literary achievements, modernity & modernization, nationalism, patriotism, politIcal discourse, Portuguese in Indian Ocean, power politics, religiosity, self-reflexivity, sri lankan society, teaching profession, world events & processes

Dinesh and Mother Charity: Boundless Kindness

Elmo Jayawardena,in Daily News, 1 June 2018, where the title is “Kindness t Its best”

Recently I stopped at a traffic light. A father and son walked on the pedestrian crossing. The father was holding the autistic boy’s hand, guiding him to the opposite pavement.

Probably, that is what he is doing from the time the child was born to the day the father dies. Such is the perpetual responsibility of a parent who raises an autistic child.

Dinesh Fernando is 31 years old and does not even have a bicycle to call his own. Continue reading

Leave a comment

June 11, 2018 · 5:32 pm

GK Haththotuwagama and His Riveting Street Theatre

Extracts from the Dr. Gamini Haththotuwegama Memorial Lecture delivered by Nihal Rajapakse at OPA Auditorium on the invitation of Richmond 60-70 Group.

Wikipedia describes Dr. Gamini Haththotuwegama in the following manner. “He was a Sri Lankan playwright, director, actor, critic and educator. He is widely known as the father of modern street theatre. He is among the most influential directors of post independent Sri Lanka.”

 Dr. Gamini Haththotuwegama … GK to us Galileans and to the occupants of Ramanathan Hall at Peradeniya in the late 1950s

Continue reading

1 Comment

Filed under centre-periphery relations, cultural transmission, education, female empowerment, heritage, Indian traditions, landscape wondrous, Left politics, life stories, literary achievements, modernity & modernization, performance, politIcal discourse, self-reflexivity, social justice, sri lankan society, teaching profession, the imaginary and the real, unusual people, world affairs