Category Archives: gender norms

Female Attire in Sri Lanka and AK Coomaraswamy

Laleen Jayamanne, in The Island, 28 December 2022, reviewing Ayesha Wickramasinghe’s ‘The Dress of Women in Sri Lanka’

Dr. Ayesha Wickramasinghe, a Senior Lecturer in the Department of Textile and Apparel Engineering, at the University of Moratuwa, has recently published her doctoral research on sartorial styles, The Dress of Women in Sri Lanka (2021), in a handsomely designed hardcover book. The historical information, which spans the colonial and the postcolonial periods, with glances at the ancient past, is presented as a cultural survey, in an engaging manner, with a large number of photographs embedded, in the text, as illustrations. It has been published by The National Science Foundation and has recently received a national award as well.

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Fraternal Polyandry in Ceylon in Dutch Times

Jan Kok, Luc Bulten and Bente M. de Leede:

“Persecuted or permitted? Fraternal Polyandry in a Calvinist colony, Sri Lanka (Ceylon), seventeenth and eighteenth centuries,” a work published by Cambridge University Press, 2022 … presented here in Thuppahi in synopsis

Abstract: Several studies assume that Calvinist Christianity severely undermined or even persecuted the practice of polyandry in the Sri Lankan areas under Dutch control. We analyze Dutch colonial policy and Church activities toward polyandry by combining ecclesiastical and legal sources. Moreover, we use the Dutch colonial administration of the Sinhalese population to estimate the prevalence of polyandry. We conclude that polyandry was far from extinct by the end of the Dutch period and we argue that the colonial government was simply not knowledgeable, interested and effective enough to persecute the practice in the rural areas under its control.

 

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Forging Revolutionary Paths. In the Sea. Tamil Females ‘breach’ Arugam Bay

 “The Rise of Sri Lanka’s Female Surfers,” — An Article by Zinara Rathnayaake with Snaps by Tommy Schultz, ….

Introduction by Glenn T Goodwin:  “A new, all-women Surf Club in Sri Lanka is enriching the country’s burgeoning surfing scene while defying cultural expectations.

I had a chance to live in Sri Lanka for three weeks doing humanitarian relief work after the 2004 tsunami. The tragedy of lost lives and communities just made the harsh vibe of a chronic politically torn culture even more tense. Although much of the east coast was obliterated, I did get a chance to surf at Arugam Bay, (one of the favorite spots for Aussie surfers and one of mine too, my memory still reminds me of the sweet waves at Arugam).

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Charles S. Braine: A Rajah of a Planter in British Ceylon

One of the Braine Progeny presenting an Item in the History of Ceylon Tea website, entitled “Charles Stanley Braine (1874-1944) – The Rajah of Mawatte”…. https://www.historyofceylontea.com/ceylon-publications/feature-

Charles Stanley was born in Ceylon on 25 December 1874. He was the eldest son of Charles Frederick Braine and Adeline Mary Becher, who had married in London earlier that year.

   

  Charles Stanley Braine: rajah-of-mawatte.html

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Coupling Leopards at Yala: Testosterone at Work

The Love Life of “Lucas,” …. A Leopard

“Lucas” (YM16) is one of the most famous male leopards roaming in the Yala National Park Sri Lanka, where he is famous for creating many popular story lines for wildlife enthusiasts over past few years. In this video we present to you the romance between “Bhagya” (YF58) & “Aster” (YF39) and also another interesting & unusual behaviour from “Lucas”

ALSO NOTE

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Mary Rodgers: Broadway Baby

Daniel Okrent, in The New York Times, 5 August 2022, where the title  is  “Broadway Baby: The Astonishing Autobiography of Mary Rodgers” by Mary Rodgers and Jesse Green

Mary Rodgers with her father, Richard, in 1959, the year “Once Upon a Mattress” opened on Broadway. Credit: Photofest

Let’s start with a full disclosure: I’m a sucker for Broadway — one of those theater fans who will see five different productions of the same show, who genuflect before cast albums from the ’50s, who inhale theater gossip as if it really mattered.

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Skin-Colour in Sri Lanka: The Prevalence of Pitch-Black?

https://www.quora.com/Why-are-Sri-Lankans-darker-than-rest-of-the-South-Asians ….. with a warning from Thuppahi: have an antidote handy to cure the splitting of your sides

…..

Lol , This is just another lunatic who always think about skin color than anything else…no wonder south asia always remain as 3rd world…Answer is ..Sri lankan majority is much much more lighter skinned than south indians…there are many pale and very light skinned people all over the country, as well very dark people like Africans are there…50% sri lankans are light tan and 30% are dark tan and 20% are dark…i mean very dark like south indians…between that 50% light skinned people there are very fair people like europeans too .. so don’t always dnt try to make pain in the ass about skin colour …it’s so funny when indians and Bangladeshis think they are white…they are also tan people lol

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Marriage Prejudices in Ceylon in Decades Past

A Well-travelled Sinhala Octogenarian**

Hi Michael, I am not sure whether people despised persons of mixed race. I really don’t think so by my own experience. However, when it came to marriage, it was an entirely different matter.

In my growing years I have heard the term Thuppahi, but I thought it
referred to low caste people, not to persons of mixed race. But what was apparent to me is that they, the people in the 1940’s and 50s’and even 60’s, did not permit mixed marriages. This was taboo.

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Ideas of Political Reform Mooted in June 2009: Dilute the Asokan Model

Michael Roberts, in the cover story in FRONTLINE, 19 June 2009, where the title reads “Some pillars for Lanka’s future”

One can win the War, but lose the Peace. A cliche this may be, but it is also a hoary truism that looms over the post-war scenario in Sri Lanka. The triumphant Sri Lankan government now has to address the human terrain rather than the fields of battle.

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An Indian Scholar’s Griefstricken VALE for Malathi De Alwis

Nivedita Menon, in Colombo Telegraph, 22 January 2021, where the title is  “Malathi De Alwis (1963-2021) – Beloved Friend, Feminist Comrade”

This is my Mala.

Every person touched by her friendship felt this sense of unique connection to Mala. To receive the gift of her attention was to forever feel the tug of a thread that attached you to a part of her heart. She would remember you at some point or the other even if you were not constantly in touch, with that fine-tuned sensitivity that brought to you the exact poem or thought or photograph or  experience that linked the two of you.

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