Sri Lanka: Ethnic Fratricide and the Dismantling of Democracy
Focusing on the historical events of post-independence Sri Lanka, S. J. Tambiah analyzes the causes of the violent conflict between the majority ... Show synopsis Focusing on the historical events of post-independence Sri Lanka, S. J. Tambiah analyzes the causes of the violent conflict between the majority Sinhalese Buddhists and the minority Tamils. He demonstrates that the crisis is primarily a result of recent societal stresses--educational expansions, linguistic policy, unemployment, uneven income distribution, population movements, contemporary uses of the past as religious and national ideology, and trends toward authoritarianism--rather than age-old racial and religious differences. "In this concise, informative, lucidly written book, scrupulously documented and well indexed, [Tambiah] trains his dispassionate anthropologist's eye on the tangled roots of an urgent, present-day problem in the passionate hope that enlightenment, understanding, and a generous spirit of compromise may yet be able to prevail."--Merle Rubin, "Christian Science Monitor " "An incredibly rich and balanced analysis of the crisis. It is exemplary in highlighting the general complexities of ethnic crises in long-lived societies carrying a burden of historical memories."--Amita Shastri, "Journal of Asian Studies ""Tambiah makes an eloquent case for pluralist democracy in a country abundantly endowed with excuses to abandon such an approach to politics."--Donald L. Horowitz, "New Republic ""An excellent and thought-provoking book, for anyone who cares about Sri Lanka."--Paul Sieghart, "Los Angeles Times Book Review "