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Whose beaches in Sri Lanka?

Photo by AP Photo/Gemunu Amarasinghe, via Sulekha Tourism will bring millions to Sri Lanka but will we see any of it? During the last week of October this year, the BBC Sinhala Sandeshaya service featured a story about Sri Lankan tourism, which was in turn aired by the Sri Lanka Broadcasting Corporation. The piece drew […]

The Struggles of Identity in Sri Lanka

Images courtesy Multicultural Arts Victoria My presentation will be an attempt to critically analyse my experience as a Franco-Sri Lankan in Sri Lanka and how I feel, as part of Sri Lanka’s Diaspora, that we can and should contribute to its ongoing reconciliation process. I’m no expert, and therefore would like you all to  allow […]

Can art still take up a social function?: Two examples from Sri Lanka in the context of post-conflict reconciliation

Decorated Kitchen Knifes, Sculpture and Canvas Installation, Jagath Weerasinghe, courtesy Mediated by Saskia Fernando Gallery Speaking about the capacity that art may have to contribute to a social achievement like building sustainable peace or national reconciliation goes somewhat against the tide of the Western contemporary art. This approach could easily be perceived as naïve in […]

Re-imagining development in Sri Lanka: In conversation with Nilakshi De Silva

Nilakshi De Silva is a Senior Research Professional at the Centre for Poverty Analysis (CEPA), and in this interview, talks about the multi-faceted challenges facing development in Sri Lanka post-war, including the nature and extent of poverty in the country. She is the second interviewee from CEPA featured on Groundviews this year, the first being […]

Borella turned into Pudumathalan and the re-appearance of Niemöller

Photo courtesy CNN The photos of prisoners, like thugs, holding a few machine guns on the roof of Welikada Prison, challenging a government which is capable of terrorizing an entire country, what do they tell us? The news of the mass murder which was a response to that challenge, what does that tell us? The […]

The Vanni: Depicting the end of Sri Lanka’s war through a graphic novel

Groundviews interviewed via email Benjamin Dix, who along with Lindsay Pollock are producing The Vanni, a multimedia graphic novel based on the hellish denouement of Sri Lanka’s 27 year old war in the first half of 2009. A preview can be viewed here. Since the live web version requires a modern browser with very good broadband, we’ve […]

Keeping Up with the Times: Old Men, Power and Values

The man with the highest power does not reveal himself as a possessor of ‘power’.  Therefore, he keeps his ‘power’.  Tao Te Ching I was wondering how Deepa Mehta would put to the screen Salman Rushdie’s Midnights Children and then heard from her at the Ottawa premier that he wrote the screen play.   The movie […]

Why devolution of power should be on linguistic basis

Image courtesy Sify Sinhala nationalists who deny that the Tamils have any grievances are now campaigning for the abolition of the Provincial Councils under the 13th Amendment. But S.W.R.D the western educated liberal who introduced the Sinhala Only Law realized that an injustice was done to the Tamil people for it was not only an […]

Appeal to the Executive and the Legislature to Guarantee Respect for the Judiciary and the Chief Justice and to Guarantee the Independence of the Judiciary

Image courtesy Colombo Telegraph The statement below has been put together by some academics in Sri Lanka. It has been written to communicate a widely held concerns about threats to the independence of the judiciary in the country. The statement has been signed by over 60 academics from different universities in Sri Lanka. Statements such as […]

Give Full Force and Effect to the Separation of Powers & Unity in Diversity

Photo courtesy Sri Lanka Guardian On the 19th day of May 2009, with the end of the military conflict that had divided the country for over thirty years, Sri Lanka entered a new era. The next step that Sri Lanka has to face is also extremely sensitive due to nationalistic feelings of the various ethnic groups. […]

On Critiquing of UN Failures: Missing the Wood for the Trees

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon receives Independent Review Panel on Sri Lanka report from ASG Charles Petrie. UN Photo/Eskinder Debebe. Courtesy UN News Centre. The BBC’s revelation on the leaked “penultimate” draft report of an internal UN review on UN’s handling of humanitarian crisis during the last stages of Vanni war in 2009, has justifiably invoked immense […]

Howling

What shall I do, living in Peru, with this report of systemic failure in U.N. monitoring in Sri Lanka, how bureaucrats drove away from the disaster to come, buried hard- earned stats about civilian deaths and allowed themselves to be brow-beaten, harassed, shouted into silence while 40,000 humans died , mostly from battering shells rained […]

The Challenge of Opposing the Impeachment Motion

Photo courtesy Euronews The clash between President Mahinda Rajapaksa and Chief Justice Shirani Bandaranayake, popularly (and wrongly) perceived as a battle between the executive/legislature and the judiciary, does not provide much hope for the latter. Both parties are presently engaged in a drive to convince the people of their narrative, their case. President Rajapaksa’s publicity […]

Challenges for a Sustainable Economic Development in Sri Lanka

Image courtesy Norwegian Embassy, Sri Lanka First of all, I would like to define sustainable development.  According to the Brundtland report it is “a development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.” But it is important to go further in the definition: “Sustainable […]