Category Archives: racism

Encountering Killer Aussies in 1975: Sri Lanka’s Experiences – Tilak’s Gatherings

 ONE: Tilak’s Recollections

This article is written based on the book “Australian Cricket Anecdotes” by Gideon Haigh, I hope the readers will bear with the strong words used at times which is typical of the Aussies.

The book states as follows, “More gruesome fun was had at the expense of the Sri Lankans, whom Australia met in their next World Cup match in 1975. When Anura Tennakoon’s team showed unexpected resistance, Chappell gave Jeff Thomson carte blanche to retard their progress.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Jesse Owens: For People of Colour vs Fascism and White Racism

Sarah Fling, in The White House Historical Association, 28 June 2021, where the title reads “Running Against the World: Jesse Owens and the 1936 Berlin Olympics”

The 1936 Summer Olympics were unlike any other. In Berlin, Germany, under the shadow of Chancellor Adolf Hitler’s Nazi regime, an African-American track and field athlete rose to stardom: Jesse Owens.1

Owens’s record-breaking athleticism carried him from the cotton fields of the South to the White House and made him one of the most famous athletes in American history.

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Richard Koenigsberg’s Wide Reach: Omnipotent Politics around the World

A Circular Letter from Richard Koenigsberg of the Library of Congress ‘Collective’ in New York,  31 January 2022

A very brief contribution directly below from Michael Roberts, a great anthropologist/scholar coming out of Asia. He’s the webmaster of Thuppahi’s Blog, which contains fascinating essays and articles as well as original, vivid photographs.  Among the pieces you can read on his website:

TRUMP AND HITLER IN THE SAME BED?

 

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The Pandora’s Box That is the Djokovic Case

Josh Roose, in The Age, 16 January 2022, where the chosen title runs thus: “Right and left unite over Djokovic – and why they are both wrong”

It is easy to dislike Novak Djokovic. At the height of a pandemic that has claimed millions of lives globally, he has consistently refused to reveal his vaccination status, despite freely travelling the world for tennis tournaments, and has been pictured acting irresponsibly on numerous occasions.For many, he has become the embodiment of the adage that one rule applies for the wealthy and powerful and another for the rest of us.

 

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Penetrating White Australia, 1948-to-1970s: Burghers and Amahs

Earl Forbes,  whose preferred title is  “Burghers and Amahs.  First to enter White Australia from Independent Ceylon, ,”.… Note that the highlights are impositions by The Editor, Thuppahi

The diplomatic relationship between Ceylon and Australia commenced even before the formal declaration of Ceylon’s Independence. Australia established a Representative Office in Colombo, on the 29th April 1947. On Independence Day, (4th February 1948) this representation was upgraded to High Commission status. As further indication of the importance placed on the relationship between the two countries, the Australian High Commission Office was moved from its temporary location at the Galle Face Hotel, to more permanent premises at Gafoor Building, in the Fort, Colombo.

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Reconfiguring Our Categories of Being for the Sake of Lanka’s Future

Michael Roberts, here repeating a set of perspectives voiced initially on 19 June 2009 after the LTTE had been vanquished,in the News Magazine FRONTLINE that was printed every fortnight from Chennai.++

“One can win the War, but lose the Peace.” Cliché this may be, but it 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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A Tale of Resistance: The Story of the Arrival of the Portuguese in Sri Lanka

Michael Roberts, reproduing here an article that appeared initially in 1989 with the same title in Ethnos, 55: 1-2:69-82. … and also in Swedish in Lanka. Tidskrift om Lankesisk Kultur (Uppsala), No. 2, March 1989. I regret that the presentation here has not been able to incoroporate diacritica for indigenous words.

ABSTRACT: This essay decodes a sixteenth century folktale which records the Sinhalese reaction to the arrival of the first Portuguese. Where the historiography has interpreted this tale as benign wonderment in the face of exotica, a piecemeal deconstruction of the allegorical clues in the ‘story is utilised to reveal how the Sinhalese linked the Portuguese with demons and with Vasavarti Maraya; the arch enemy of the Buddha. In this fashion the Portuguese and the Christian sacrament of communion were represented as dangerous, disordering forces. The piecemeal reinterpretation of this short text, however, must be overlaid by a holistic perspective and the realisation that its rendering in oral form enabled its purveyors to lace the story with a satirical flavour: so that the Portuguese and Catholicism are, like demons, rendered both disordering and comic, dangerous and inferior – thus ultimately controllable. In contending in this manner that the folktale is an act of nationalist opposition, the article is designed as an attack on the positivist empiricism which pervades the island’s historiography and shuts out imaginative reconstructions which are worked out by penetrating the subjective world of the ancient texts.

 

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Quinton De Kock Takes Fresh Guard, but … Unease Remains?

Firdose Moonda

t may be tempting to think that Quinton de Kock‘s refusal to take a knee ahead of the match against West Indies earlier this week is out and out racism, but ignorance of racial inequalities that have resulted from slavery, colonialism and apartheid might be what caused him to not comply with Cricket South Africa’s directive, and to consequently withdraw himself from the match.
That’s not the soft view, nor one that seeks to justify de Kock’s continued inaction over antiracist gestures, but rather one that aims to add nuance to the ever-complex conversation around race and sport, and especially race and sport in South Africa.

 

 

 

The array of gestures before the game against Australia that probably drove CSA to mandate the whole team taking the knee  ICC via Getty Continue reading

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