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A perennial struggle: Women’s political representation in Sri Lanka

Women constitute 52% of Sri Lanka’s population, however women constitute only 2% of elected members of Local Authorities. A critical concern is the very low levels of nominations received by women (approximately 6%) from political parties (See table below). Much of the blame for this under representation must be borne by the major political parties […]

These Sri Lankan whores! Serve them right!

Name and shame the whores that act in pornographic films online. Their seedy grainy stuck-between-teeth pictures plastered across newspapers will be the deterrent for other whores who have the same idea. Designate parks for young people to canoodle in (but ensure someone watches over the canoodlers for we don’t want them to canoodle with naked […]


Photo courtesy Dushiyanthini Kanagasabapathipillai Sanctity, or rather a loss of sanctity, anchors the meditations that you will find in the few passages below. A recent article in the Economist made a mildly facetious account of the current administration’s efforts to create a Sri Lankan society grounded in ‘good values and ethics.’  The article goes on […]

Why women in politics always matters: A conversation with Chulani Kodikara

Chulani Kodikara has written five articles for Groundviews, three on the topic of women in mainstream politics in Sri Lanka. Revealingly, they are comparatively three of the most under-read articles on this site. Women are not willing to go back to pre-war status quo, a compelling essay written for the special edition on the end […]

A conversation with Kumudini Samuel

Kumudini Samuel is the founder of Women and Media Collective, a women’s group working for the inclusion of women concerns in peace process and the change of attitudes towards gender issues. We begin our conversation over Kumudini’s interesting naming of her son, leading to larger questions over discrimination and negotiation of identity, race and ethnicity […]

LLRC: Testimony by Ferial Ashraff

Groundviews was able to obtain the audio recording of the testimony by Ferial Ashraff to the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC) on 24 September 2010. The recording is around 40 minutes long. Ms. Ashraff incorporates into this vital testimony the opinion of many women, including those directly affected by war.

USJP Students’ Union: Harassment and Gender Discrimination over clothing

Many believe that women in Sri Lanka are in a better place compared to its counterparts in South Asia. This is true up to a certain extent where women enjoy a high level of education, high life expectancy at birth (74 years) and access to economic opportunities. Sri Lanka elected the first ever female head […]

Celebrating a lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex and questioning Sri Lanka

Rosanna Flamer-Caldera is the Executive Director of Equal Ground. This interview was held soon after the Prime Minister of Sri Lanka said he was open to dialogue with the gay community, but “would not take any decision which could hurt the culture of the country”. Almost exactly one year ago, India decriminalised gay sex. As […]

Compilation of special edition on the end of war in Sri Lanka

Download the 162 page compilation of content as a PDF in high quality (25.4Mb), or low quality (3.7Mb). The low quality version is good enough to read, but the photos will look and print much better in the high quality version. From 19 – 27 May 2010, Groundviews ran a special edition on the end of […]

Women are not willing to go back to pre-war status quo

By Kumi Samuel and Chulani Kodikara ‘Women are not just victims of war, as some aspects of their experiences are empowering and can be used as a resource for healing and transformation’. War is a gendered process. Post war is no different.   It may be a cliché to say that in Sri Lanka as elsewhere […]

Provincial Council Elections 2008/2009: Nominations for and representation of women

A number of columnists have commented on the various different aspects of the Provincial Council elections held in 2008 /2009 beginning with the Eastern PC elections in May 2008. These comments have ranged from increasing election fatigue, the costs to the tax payer, the phenomenon of the new contenders, and implications of results for future […]

1,000 posts on Groundviews: Bearing witness, shaping peace

Exactly three years after its launch, Groundviews published its 1000th post today. In it Dr. Paikiasothy Saravanamuttu identifies the site with quality debate and asks citizens to use it to canvass their ideas for constitutional reform, governance, human rights and the economy and whatever else they see as constituting essential elements of an agenda for […]