Text of the final Pastoral Letter written by the Anglican Bishop of Kurunegala, Rt. Rev. L Wickremasinghe, in September 1983 after the July 1983 Violence …… [Bishop Lakshman passed away some weeks after this on October 23rd 1983] ………….. from http://dbsjeyaraj.com28 July 2021, 9:28 pm
“The Tragedy is that it is Becoming Harder in 1983 for Sinhala Christians to Acknowledge that what was done is a GREATER Moral Crime than in 1958” …………….. Bishop Lakshman Wickremesinghe
Alan Strathern’s first major work wasKingship and Conversion in Sixteenth-Century Sri Lanka: Portuguese Imperialism in a Buddhist Land. …. published in 2008 and since then he has extended his reach. Though in far too belated manner, Thuppahi here introduces his work to a Sri Lankan audience …. Begiining with a citation leading to CR De Silva’s review of his book on Sri Lanka….. and ending with his own introduction of self to the world in the Oxford University web site.
Uditha Devapriya, in The Island, 24 July 2021, where the title reads “Colonial Bourgeoisie and Sinhala Cultural Revival”
The colonial bourgeoisie in Sri Lanka did not form a monolithic class. They were divided horizontally as well as vertically: horizontally on the basis of income and inheritance, and vertically on the basis of primordial attachments, such as caste ideology. Various factors, mainly economic, conspired as much to unify the bourgeoisie as they did to divide them, distinguishing them by their homogeneity as much as by their heterogeneity.
One’s academic trajectories and journeys are invariably subject to vagaries and contingencies. The events and researches leading to my interest in “communal violence” and “zealotry” in the 1990s, and thereafter to what I have called ‘sacrificial devotion” (embracing the topics of “terrorism,” suicide bombers and Tamil Tigers),[i] were shaped by such contingencies. Since my web site will present some short essays on both these topics in the course of this month, let me detail some moments during my research work that resulted in the journeys that produced such outcomes.
In 1986-87 I spent about 14 months in Sri Lanka on research work during my sabbatical year. I was completing my research and writing on the history of Colombo in British times and the associated rise of a Westernized middle class-cum-bourgeoisie – work that resulted in the book People Inbetween (Sarvodaya, 1989).[ii] The island was still under the clouds cast by the attacks on Tamils in the southern parts of the island in July 1983. Following the British colonial lexicon this momentous and tragic set of events was generally described as the “1983 riots.” But such politically-aware scholars as Newton Gunasinghe and Shelton Kodikara were among those who depicted the event as a “pogrom.” This was a sensitizing revision that I accepted.
Riots May 1958 – A Tamil passenger was taken out of the vehicle and beaten up
Liyanage Amarakeerthi, whose chosen title is “A Fatal Intersection: Three Small Shops in North Western Sri Lanka that No Longer Exist” …. with highlighting imposed by The Editor Thuppahi
I was born and raised in a little community in Kuliyapitiya, a typical agricultural area with three small tanks (wewa), which watered paddy fields, within walking distance on three sides of my house. Of course, there were also three Buddhist temples, almost within walking distance from each other. It was a typical village in the North-Western province, a part of which is known as bath kooralee or ‘rice province’. Where there were no tanks or paddy fields there were coconut plantations, big and small. Not surprisingly, much of the ‘coconut triangle’ is also in this province.
Stephen Champion’s cover photo has been deployed here by Thuppahi as an external intervention to highlight the scenario of the 1980s
A THANK YOU NOTE addressed to MOHAN SAMARASINHE, 27 July 2021
Dear Respected Sir
I would like to extend my sincere thanks for coming forward to establish a Pre-school in our place and begin for the poor and needy. I highly appreciate your great service towards our people especially it is how important to see that a Sinhala person has come forward to help Tamil who have suffered so much since 1983. Even though we tried to get help from many people they didnt give us proper reply. Then only I requested Mr.Mohan Samarasingha. You accepted our request without any hesitation to support us to begin the school succesfully. You have already given nearly four hundred thousand rupees to renovate the building. Now the building has come up yet we have to do little work to finish. So we hope to receive your support in future too. Once again I extend my sincere thanks to your love and grate service towards us.
Sanjeewa Jayaweera, in The Island, 25 July 2021, where the title is “SRI LANKA’S ECONOMIC QUAGMIRE AND HOW MARGRET THATCHER SMASHED THE KEYNESIAN CONSENSUS”
For quite some time, experts in economics and finance not associated with any political party have been raising the red flag about the severe economic challenges that our country was facing. Unfortunately, the politicians have consistently ignored these challenges. Many in the private sector believed that commonsense would prevail and necessary course correction will occur, and the ship will sail smoothly.
“US-China conflict ‘more likely’ than five years ago, says Singapore PM -” BBC News
Singapore’s Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong has told the BBC that a clash between the US and China is more likely than it was five years ago. However, he maintained that the odds of military conflict are “not yet high”. The prime minister said if both nations continue to take a hard line because of domestic considerations, they could easily find themselves at an impasse.
I am greatly honoured to be asked by the Awarelogue Initiative to speak at their Lecture Forum in this year of 2021, celebrating the 90th anniversary of the advent of universal franchise in Sri Lanka. In my lecture, I shall touch on some of the complex problems of governance and policy faced by a small multi-ethnic island, flanked as it is and always has been, by economic and political superpowers.
Dr. Thomas Drummond-Shiels: Donoughmore Commissioner 1927/28: Labour MP for Edinburgh 1924 -31; Under Secretary of State for the Colonies 1929-31
Thuppahi's Blog · This web site presents the interventions of MICHAEL ROBERTS in the public realm with reference to Sri Lankan political affairs. It will embrace the politics of cricket as well. ROBERTS was educated at St. Aloysius College in Galle and the universities of Peradeniya and Oxford. He taught History at Peradeniya University and Anthropology at Adelaide university. He is now retired and lives in Adelaide.