Being Cakravarti: nitharama pirivaraagena innavaa!

Raja Dekma, or ROYAL AUDIENCE ….. Photo Item in the Daily Mirror, 25 March 2012

 Pics by Pradeep Dilrukshana

President Mahinda Rajapaksa comments at photographs of world leaders captured in the years gone by. Is he reviving nostalgic memories? The picture was taken at the exhibition ‘Raja Dekma’ a complete portrayal of the President’s personal photographer Sudath Silva held at the Kotte Ananda Sasthralaya today.  

Web Editor: Studying the Daily Mirror pictures as well as those on the wall, I would say that just as a King draws homage, it is only royalty that can hob-nob with foreign nobility. For the reasoning which led to the imposed title, see Michael Roberts, “Mahinda Rajapaksa: Cakravarti Imagery and Populist Processes,” in this web site or, with different title, in Groundviews where a blog debate was sparked. Also see the short bibliography below.

                                                SOME REFERENCES

Asanga Welikala, “Jayatissa, Jeyaraj and Jacobinism: Debating ‘Sri Lankan-ness” in Post-War Sri Lanka,”

Roshan de Silva Wijeyeratne 2007 “Buddhism, the Asokan Persona and the Galactic Polity: Re-thinking Sri Lanka’s Constitutional Present,” Social Analysis, vol.  51/3.

Roshan de Silva Wijeyeratne 2004On Being, Nation and Citizenship in Sri Lanka: Going Beyond the Ontological Hermeneutics of the Buddhist Cosmos,” in P. Fitzpatrick & P. Tuitt (eds.) Critical Beings: Law, Nation and the Global Subject. Ashgate: Dartmouth.

Roshan de Silva Wijeyeratne 2012 (?) “The Mandala State in Pre-British Sri Lanka: The Cosmographical Terrain of Contested Sovereignty in the Theravada Buddhism Tradition,” in A. Wagner, S. Cacciaguidi-Fahy and R. Sherwin (eds.) Treatise on Legal Visual Semiotics, Springer Publishing Company, forthcoming.

Michael Roberts 1994 “The Asokan Persona as a Cultural Disposition,” in Roberts, Exploring Confrontation. Sri Lanka: Politics, Culture and History, Harwood Academic Publishers, pp. 57-72 … …. where there are three other articles on the concept with AE Goonesinha and R. Premadasa featured in two.

Michael Roberts 2004 Sinhala Consciousness in the Kandyan Period, 1590s to 1815, Colombo: Vijitha Yapa Publications.

Michael Roberts 2009 “The Rajapaksa Regime and the Fourth Estate,” 9 December 2009,


Filed under cultural transmission, historical interpretation, patriotism, politIcal discourse, power politics, Rajapaksa regime, sri lankan society, world affairs

3 responses to “Being Cakravarti: nitharama pirivaraagena innavaa!

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