Shyam Selvadurai, Jean Arasanayagam, Nayomi Munaweera: Writing the 1983 riots
Academics / Scroll.In / Writers

Shyam Selvadurai, Jean Arasanayagam, Nayomi Munaweera: Writing the 1983 riots

The ethnic riots of 1983 were not the first in Sri Lanka. Nor were they the last. But Black July was indisputably a seismic event in this country’s history. Its echoes are everywhere, but some of my most meaningful encounters with it have been through the island’s literature. From the warmth and innocence of Funny … Continue reading

Sri Lankan Tamils around the world have built one of the world’s largest online libraries
Academics / Activists / Archivists / Scroll.In

Sri Lankan Tamils around the world have built one of the world’s largest online libraries

Seran Sivananthamoorthy is only 25 years old which is why his knowledge of the Jaffna Public Library is limited to memory and anecdote. The library with some 95,000 volumes including the only original copy of the Yalpana Vaipavamalai or the History of the Kingdom of Jaffna was set alight by a mob in 1981 as … Continue reading

Kumudini Samuel, Thiloma Munasinghe: Gaps in Sri Lanka’s reproductive health profile
Academics / Activists / Researchers / SciDev.Net / Scientists

Kumudini Samuel, Thiloma Munasinghe: Gaps in Sri Lanka’s reproductive health profile

[COLOMBO] Sri Lanka has made significant progress on maternal and child health but falls short on critical health services for vulnerable women, sexual minorities, the country’s at-risk population and those who live in former conflict areas, say the authors of a country profile on sexual and reproductive health. This two-part report on Universal Access to … Continue reading

Bettany Hughes: Everyone say, ‘Philosophy!’
Academics / Historians / Jaipur Literary Festival 2015 / The Hindu Businessline / TV People

Bettany Hughes: Everyone say, ‘Philosophy!’

Bettany Hughes was once described as the ‘Nigella Lawson of History’. Ask her about it now, and she bursts out laughing. In that moment, the similarities between the two women could not be more obvious — vivacious, uninhibited and good looking, both exert a magnetic pull on TV viewers across the world. However, the focus … Continue reading

Vimla Velthas, Sharmini Pereira, T. Shanaathan, T. Krishnapriya: A House in Jaffna
Academics / Commonwealth Writers / Painters / Researchers / Writers

Vimla Velthas, Sharmini Pereira, T. Shanaathan, T. Krishnapriya: A House in Jaffna

Vimila Velthas lays out lunch on the table in the courtyard. She has prepared a traditional Jaffna meal – yam, coloured orange with the heat of chillies and cooked till creamy, a spicy fish and eggplant curry served with fat grains of red rice. Velthas presses her guests to eat more and scoffs gently at … Continue reading

Amal De Chickera: A Right to a Nationality
Academics / Activists / Aid Workers / Researchers / The Sunday Times

Amal De Chickera: A Right to a Nationality

You are stateless – you can lay claim to no nationality, and no nation claims you. You may have been born into anonymity as one of the persecuted Rohingya in Myanmar, your life encircled by fences of camps for the internally displaced, your only option to flee across the border to another refugee camp in … Continue reading

Prof. Chandra Wickramasinghe: The Origins of Life on Earth
Academics / Astronomers / Scientists / The Sunday Times

Prof. Chandra Wickramasinghe: The Origins of Life on Earth

Whether they agree with him or not, most scientists consider Prof. Chandra Wickramasinghe a force to be reckoned with. His early career was marked by a string of honours – graduating in 1960 with a BSc First Class Honours in mathematics from the University of Ceylon, he went on to study at Trinity College and … Continue reading

Jean Arasanayagam: A Wanderer Through the Landscapes of Time
Academics / Poets / The Sunday Times / Writers

Jean Arasanayagam: A Wanderer Through the Landscapes of Time

To anyone who knows her, it is clear Jean Arasanayagam is her own most penetrating, most persistent interrogator. In a dance that her readers are familiar with, Jean asks the questions and then finds the answers in her poetry and prose, in fact and fiction. This is nowhere more evident than in latest collection of … Continue reading