Category Archives: Indian traditions

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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Rukmani Devi aka Daisy Rasammah Daniels: A Stellar Career

Wikipedia on Daisy Rasammah Daniels or Rukmani Devi … at … https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rukmani_Devi

 Daisy Rasammah Daniels, known popularly as Rukmani Devi (15 January 1923–28 October 1978: Sinhala: රුක්මණී දේවී) was a Sri Lankan film actress and singer, who was often acclaimed as The Nightingale of Sri Lanka“.[1]

She made it to the silver screen via the stage and had acted in close to 100 films at the time of her death. Having an equal passion for singing as well as a melodious voice, she was Sri Lanka’s foremost female singer in the gramophone era.[2] After her death, she was awarded the Sarasaviya ‘Rana Thisara’- Life Time Achievement Award at the 1979 Sarasaviya Awards Festival.[3]

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An Ethnological Introduction to the Tamils of Sri Lanka

 Karthigesu Sivathamby

 This item now presented in Thuppahi is the first part of a book in pdf format entitled The Tamils of Sri Lanka. In converting the pdf the whole text went haywire and the paragraph divisions were all over the shop. I cannot guarantee that my painstaking editorial reconstruction stuck to Siva’s original design. I have refrained from inserting any highlighting emphasis on the text: so the highlighting you see is there in the original… As far as I could work out, this work was finalized in 1989, but that point is subject to correction ………….. Michael Roberts Continue reading

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Caste in Jaffna

Prashanth Kuganathan** whose title runs thus: “Social Stratification in Jaffna: A Survey of Recent Research on Caste”

A SYNOPSIS: Since 1983, war has dominated the perception of Sri Lanka. This has affected scholarship on the country, such that the subjects of an overwhelming number of research proposals and publications have been on the war and the prospects and prescriptions for peace. This survey paper is an attempt to locate the system of caste in transition in the Jaffna Peninsula by reviewing recent literature written after the commencement of the war. While detailed ethnographies of caste in Jaffna may have temporarily come to a halt, caste practices have not and remain a salient part of everyday life among the Tamils in Sri Lanka. As the war ended in 2009, it is therefore important that social scientists on Sri Lanka revisit the topic of caste, that is an integral part of not just Tamil culture or society, but being Tamil itself. As the study of caste is dominated by research in India, a microanalysis of Jaffna and Sri Lanka, particularly the nuances of this system in transition due to war and militancy, could contribute to the macro-study of caste at a sub-continental perspective.

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Conserving Sri Lanka’s Cultural Heritage From Today’s Ravages

ICOMOS NOTICE

Published by Cambridge Scholars Publishing in 2022, the book titled “Sustaining Support for Intangible Cultural Heritage” addresses the vulnerability and fragility of sustaining intangible heritage during prolonged shocks, such as the Covid – 19 Pandemic. In addition, the book offers insights into how heritage facilitators and practitioners deal with and safeguard intangible heritage locally and showcases the implications of ecological changes concerning livelihoods to the practice of heritage and education on sustainability.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Shehan Karunatilaka in Earlier ‘Incarnations’ in Thuppahi Circles

Shehan Karunatilaka on the ball in “Chinaman” .…… https://thuppahis.com › 2011/05/26 › shehan-karunatila…

26 May 2011 — It consists of one sentence: “If you’ve never seen a cricket match; if you have and it has made you snore; if you can’t understand why anyone

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“Shehan Karunatilaka snaffles a bag of wickets,” …. https://thuppahis.com/2012/01/22/shehan-karunatilaka-snaffles-a-bag-of-wickets/

22 Jan 2012 — NEW DELHI, January 22: Sri Lankan author Shehan Karunatilaka has won the US$ 50,000 (LKR 5.68 million) DSC prize for South Asian Literature …

 

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Ceylonese Precursors ‘anticipating’ Sunak’s Ascent to the Top in Britain

Rifat Halim, whose preferred title is Sunak’s Path to No. 10 may have begun in Ceylon” Acres of newsprint have been devoted to Rishi Sunak’s rise. He is said to be the first Asian to occupy No. 10 Downing Street.  This is not correct. Asia begins with the Tigris river. Boris Johnson’s great grandfather was a Turkish politician. He should have been called Boris Kemal, as Johnson is the maiden name of his great grandmother.   Continue reading

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Collective Selves and the Promise of Buddhaland in Nationalism

Brian Victoria, in Buddhistdoor.net  … where the title reads as “Nationalism: Collective Selves and the Promise of Buddhaland”

Introduction

In a recent lecture on the war in the Ukraine, John Mearsheimer, a political scientist at the University of Chicago, noted that nationalism is the strongest ideology in the world today. I was somewhat surprised by his comment because, having lived through the Cold War era, anything having to do with Russia was framed in the ideological context of “the struggle of the Free World or democracies against Communist dictatorship,” and so on. Yet, on reflection, I realized that with the collapse of the Soviet Union in December 1991, Russia had reverted to a capitalist state, even if now authoritarian or autocratic. Thus, Mearsheimer’s identification of nationalism as a key factor behind Russia’s invasion of Ukraine was not as surprising as it initially seemed.

Buddhist monks protest against aid for Rakhine’s Rohingya Muslims. Photo by Soe Zeya Tun. From reuters.com

Mearsheimer’s insight led to a new line of enquiry on my part. As a Buddhist, I had long asked myself, without finding a satisfactory answer, what is the relationship, if any, of the Buddhadharma with nationalism?

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Sustaining Cultural Performance Practices across the Indian Ocean

Shihan De Silva Jayasuriya et al

PREFACE to her new book entitled “Sustaining Support for Intangible Cultural Heritage” (ICH)

Sustaining Support for Intangible Cultural Heritage (ICH) continues the conversations on cultural heritage which commenced at a virtual conference held on August 3, 2020, at the Institute of Commonwealth Studies. The conference was spurred by the screening of my film – “Indian Ocean Memories and African Migrants” – at the Social Scientists Association, Colombo. The interest shown by UNESCO Global Network Facilitators, Dr Bilinda Nandadeva and Dr Gamini Wijesuriya, who attended the screening, was a catalyst to convening the conference. The Covid-19 pandemic further exposed the significance of heritage and the vulnerability of intangible culture. The book is a call to value ICH and an inspiration for academics, researchers, stakeholders, civil society, cultural practitioners and policymakers to understand the threats to sustaining heritage.

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Roads and Bridges in Ancient Sri Lanka

Introduction by Gp Capt Kumar Kirinde [retd], SLAF … & crafted by Chamara Sumanapala, …. & presented in The Nation Sunday Print Edition, date not specified

Below is an article on roads and bridges in ancient Sri Lanka (Anuradhapura era). The article also talks about the major roads linking Anuradhapura with the ports of Dambakola Patuna (in Jaffna Peninsula), Mahatitta (near Mannar) and Gokanna (Trincomalee) and the road linking Anuradhapura with Magama (present day Tissamaharama) in Ruhuna.

 

Stone Bridge close to Mahakanadarawa Reservoir (Mihintale)
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