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Leslie’s House

I felt like we were intruding on Mr C. As if we’d interrupt him at work on a new manuscript. The housekeeper spoke not a word of English, but led us into his office... and then left. Michelle and I were there, alone. This was no museum. This was no shrine. This was Arthur C. Fucking Clarke’s office. His office with everything.
posted by Artw on Nov 6, 2013 - 18 comments

"about the size of your face"

In Sri Lanka a new species of giant tarantula has been discovered by the British Tarantula Society. They prefer to live in "well-established old trees, but due to deforestation the number have dwindled and due to lack of suitable habitat they enter old buildings." For spider lovers, there's video footage.
posted by MartinWisse on Apr 9, 2013 - 80 comments

I AM

I Am tells the stories of 36 Sri Lankan elders, about their lives and work, and their connections to their hometown. ... With the movement of people away from their hometowns, particularly from Jaffna and Galle, I also spoke to the so called 'internal diaspora', about their longing for their hometowns and their sense of belonging to their adoptive homes."
posted by chunking express on Jan 6, 2012 - 3 comments

On The Tip of Rama's Bow

India's Lost Southern Border: Somewhere near the town of Mandapam on peninsular India, India's vast rail network is at its closest to the sea-coast; indeed, it crosses a 2.4 kilometre stretch of the sea, and then extends for another 12 kilometres, before terminating in an ancient temple town, Rameswaram(YouTube), close to the impressive Ramanatha Swamy temple around which the town is centered. Another 20 kilometres through an increasingly rough terrain brings us to a forgotten fishing hamlet, Moonram Chathiram, before bringing us to some ruined buildings, abandoned rain-tracks, a submerged temple and a ruined church. Welcome to Dhanushkodi(YouTube). Till tragedy struck on the night of December 22nd 1964, this was India's only border-town in the south. [more inside]
posted by the cydonian on Oct 11, 2011 - 12 comments

Kumar Sangakkara's 2011 MCC Spirit of Cricket Cowdrey Lecture.

"Kumar Sangakkara delivered an exceptional speech in his 2011 MCC Spirit of Cricket Cowdrey Lecture, touching on the history, culture and opportunities for Sri Lankan cricket as well a moving recounting of the terrorist attack on their team bus in Pakistan." [more inside]
posted by chunking express on Jul 5, 2011 - 14 comments

Vanguard of American Journalism

Current TV previously & previously, the media company founded by Al Gore after the 2000 election, has picked up the kinds of in depth long form journalism being rapidly dropped by major networks, but has been tantalizingly unavailable for those without cable; until now. They have been putting their Vanguard episodes up on their website and on YouTube. [more inside]
posted by Blasdelb on Apr 30, 2011 - 24 comments

The Sachin Tendulkar of Cricketblogging

For me, this was a first experience of seeing India play at home, and of Sachin Tendulkar playing in front of his own people. I chose a good game with which to start. I can think of few, if any, experiences in sport to match watching Tendulkar succeed in a home game. Roger Federer may occupy a similar status of universally-acknowledged greatness within tennis, but I think it is fair to say that Switzerland is not quite as passionate about tennis as India is about cricket. If Federer were to simultaneously play tennis whilst hoarding gold and providing banking facilities for dubious dictators, perhaps the fervour of his support would match that for Sachin. But the Swiss population is unlikely ever to top the one billion mark.
Don't know a thing about cricket? Wouldn't know a wicket from a googly? Don't worry, you won't have to know a thing to enjoy Andy Zaltzman's World Cup Blog. He is traveling around Bangladesh, India and Sri Lanka attending various games. Zaltzman is best known to the world for the fabulous podcast The Bugle which he does with John Oliver. Therefore it should come as no surprise that he also does a cricket podcast. And he tweets about cricket too.
posted by Kattullus on Feb 28, 2011 - 19 comments

A Widow's Journey.

A Widow's Journey [MP3]. "In 1989, Appapillai Amirthalingam - the most prominent political figure of the Tamil community - was assassinated at his home in the Sri Lankan capital, Colombo. Twenty years on, the Tamil Tigers have been defeated by the military. Appapillai's wife and son travel back to their homeland in search of his legacy in an attempt to understand what the future holds for Sri Lanka's Tamil people."
posted by chunking express on Sep 2, 2010 - 9 comments

800 Wickets

Muttiah Muralitharan, who is retiring from Test cricket, takes his 800th Test wicket. [more inside]
posted by chunking express on Jul 22, 2010 - 26 comments

All you need is love

Mass wedding for former Tamil fighters Fifty-three couples of former Tamil Tiger rebels were married Sunday ... at a rehabilitation camp near the northern town of Vavuniya. [more inside]
posted by kliuless on Jun 13, 2010 - 7 comments

Not a Halloween Post.

The Maskatorium: hundreds of masks collected from around the world over the past 20 years.
posted by gman on Oct 30, 2009 - 6 comments

"I started the movement with the firm resolve that I will never be caught alive by the enemy. That has spread down the ranks."

Velupillai Prabhakaran, the elusive and ruthless leader (timeline, short bio) of the violent separatist Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) has been reportedly killed in battle by the Sri Lankan Army (self-loading video) [more inside]
posted by shoebox on May 19, 2009 - 57 comments

Life as a female Tamil Tiger guerilla relived by one of first female soldiers

Life as a female Tamil Tiger guerilla relived by one of first female soldiers. In 1987, aged 17, Niromi de Soyza shocked her middle-class Sri Lankan family by joining the Tamil Tigers. One of the rebels' first female soldiers, equipped with rifle and cyanide capsule, she was engaged in fierce combat.
posted by chunking express on May 12, 2009 - 9 comments

You have been accusing my soldiers of raping civilians?

"Is this Channel 4? You have been accusing my soldiers of raping civilians? Your visa is cancelled, you will be deported. You can report what you like about this country, but from your own country, not from here." -- Nick Paton Walsh tells the story of how he was ordered to leave Sri Lanka by Gotabaya Rajapaksa.
posted by chunking express on May 11, 2009 - 32 comments

LTTE Is No Excuse For Killing Vanni Civilians

"A young mother is injured and her three month old baby killed by shell fragments as she breastfeeds the child in the government declared no fire zone. Parents hide their children in roughly dug bunkers to escape LTTE press gangs who comb the no-fire zone for conscripts. A woman loses her husband to sniper fire and the toddler he was carrying too drowns when they attempt to wade across a lagoon to escape the no-fire zone. A father is shot in the head by LTTE members as he attempted to flee with his family." - The University Teachers for Human Rights (Jaffna) discuss the situation in Vanni, Sri Lanka, in their 47th information bulletin.
posted by chunking express on Apr 17, 2009 - 25 comments

War in Sri Lanka

If you didn't know, there is a war going on in Sri Lanka. Jailed journalist Jayampathy Wickramaratne discusses what a political solution to the conflict might entail. Noam Chomsky offers up his opinions on the war and its eventual aftermath. Want to hear from some Tamils? MIA offers up her take on the situation. And in a very precient article from May of last year, D.B.S Jeyaraj discusses the LTTE at 32. [more inside]
posted by chunking express on Feb 13, 2009 - 18 comments

And Then They Came For Him

Lasantha Wickrematunge's last editorial [via bb] as part of the Sri Lankan Sunday Leader. Lasantha was shot on the way to work, but seems to have had a piece ready for just this situation. In a country where the state boasts about bombing radio stations, two journalists were executed in 2008 and five in 2007 the fact that this killing took place in broad daylight after state media called the paper unpatriotic has led to accusations of governmental involvement.
posted by jaduncan on Jan 12, 2009 - 18 comments

Tigers beat

Is this end for the Tamil Tigers? The Sri Lankan army have captured Elephant Pass, the latest in a string of victories against the guerrilla outfit. The army has pledged to avoid civilian casualties (which have caused India and other countries to intervene in the past) but there are still concerns with reports of artillery strikes on civilian centers in Tharmapuram [graphic], and serious human rights concerns. Though the military battle may be all but over the country is sure to face armed political struggle for some time.
posted by Artw on Jan 9, 2009 - 34 comments

Disaster Capitalism

"Like the dotcom bubble, the disaster bubble is inflating in an ad-hoc and chaotic fashion." Journalist Naomi Klein discusses how corporations and governments are working together more closely than ever, using the mandate of catastrophe — whether natural or man-made — to further concentrate power in fewer hands, with less oversight: from illegal sales of American police technology to China to avert hypothetical tragedies during the Beijing Olympics, to the privatization of water supplies in post-tsunami Sri Lanka.
posted by Blazecock Pileon on Aug 17, 2008 - 50 comments

So, you thought Cricket was for sissies, aye?

First, a bit of an introduction to the game of Cricket (youtube) for those of us who may not be familiar with the sport. Next, a few clips (1, 2, 3, 4) on how awesome the Gentleman's Game can be (and you thought we didn't do anything but roam around in our white pants and cotton shirts...). But, if that wasn't enough for you, then here's a taste of Twenty20 Cricket (the fast, fast paced version of the game), and the new DLF Indian (pdf) Premier League. (This is in addition to the One Day Matches, which were instituted to bring in a bit more excitement into the game during the 1970's, prior to which the match only consisted of Tests. However, some purists still maintain that the game would've been better served had it not been commercalized to the extent that it has, and still prefer the leisurely pace of the original format to its current incarnation.) [more inside]
posted by hadjiboy on Mar 20, 2008 - 56 comments

Travels in a Militarised Society.

groundviews is Sri Lankan citizen journalism initiative. [more inside]
posted by chunking express on Jan 29, 2008 - 5 comments

Sinhalese Buddhist Nationalist Ideology: Implications for Politics and Conflict Resolution in Sri Lanka

Sinhalese Buddhist Nationalist Ideology: Implications for Politics and Conflict Resolution in Sri Lanka
posted by chunking express on Dec 14, 2007 - 4 comments

Rama's Bridge or Adam's Bridge

Indian Government withdraws scepticism of bridge-building monkey army
posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 on Sep 14, 2007 - 48 comments

Sri Lanka’s Scars Trace Lines of War Without End

Sri Lanka's Scars Trace Lines of War Without End. This article in the New York Times does a pretty good job of covering the state of the conflict in Sri Lanka up till today.
posted by chunking express on Jun 15, 2007 - 10 comments

It's hard being a journalist in Sri Lanka

"The people who murder journalists in Sri Lanka feel so well protected that they carry out fresh murders to mark the anniversaries of their preceding ones."
posted by chunking express on May 1, 2007 - 17 comments

Karuna Group and LTTE Continue Abducting and Recruiting Children.

The Karuna Group and the LTTE Continue Abducting and Recruiting Children. "When government troops at a military base look across the street at children standing guard at a Karuna office and do nothing, it’s hard to believe the government is taking any meaningful steps to end this abuse."
posted by chunking express on Mar 29, 2007 - 7 comments

Images of Ceylon

Images of Ceylon - Hundreds and hundreds of photos taken in Ceylon (Sri Lanka) from the mid 1800's to around the turn of that century.

Warning: A handful out of the ones I've seen show topless women so maybe NSFW.
posted by selton on Sep 4, 2006 - 18 comments

"They showed him a picture then; / Ain't that you with the Muslims?"

Banned in D.C., not to mention the rest of the U. S. A. --British-Sri Lankan rapper M. I. A. (myspace page, with music), aka Maya Arulpragasam, has apparently been denied entry into the United States to record her next album, a follow-up to the surprise success of her first major release, "Arular." Could it have been this album that pricked the ears of immigration officials? Or maybe these lyrics ("Sunshowers," available at myspace)?
posted by bardic on May 22, 2006 - 151 comments

More Violence in Sri Lanka

Violence that had been building up in the Eastern coast of Sri Lanka has errupted in the capital with the assassination of the foreign affairs minister. Presumably the LTTE are involved in the killing, as they have been complaining for some time that the government has been sheltering a splinter group, conducting a covert-war. As one would expect, LankaWeb supplies a strong opinion on the assassination. One wonders if we will see Sri Lanka return to the state it was in some 10 years ago.
posted by chunking express on Aug 12, 2005 - 9 comments

Isn't slavery illegal? Well, defacto slavery may not be ...

Sri Lankan Maids Pay Dearly for Perilous Jobs Overseas The teacher held up an electric cake mixer and told the class of wide-eyed women before her to clean it properly. If it smells, "Mama," as the aspiring maids were instructed to call their female employers, "will be angry and she will hammer and beat you." Sriyantha Walpola for The New York Times More than a million Sri Lankans - roughly 1 in every 19 citizens - now work abroad, and nearly 600,000 are housemaids. Sriyantha Walpola for The New York Times Some maids being trained in Kegalla, Sri Lanka, will find brutal work conditions in the Middle East. "This is where you go wrong," the teacher continued. "That is how Mama beats you and burns you - when you do anything wrong."
posted by kmtharakan on May 8, 2005 - 27 comments

South Asian Tsunamis

A massive earthquake - the largest since 1964 - centred off the coast of the Indonesian island of Sumatra has caused tidal waves that are devastating coastal areas around the Indian Ocean including Sri Lanka, India and Indonesia.

Eyewitness report from the south coast of Sri Lanka. The death tolls are still rising, there is the risk of further tsunamis and it is being estimated that 100,000s of people will be left homeless.
posted by i_cola on Dec 26, 2004 - 193 comments

Sri Lankan Elephant Room

Elephants of Sri Lanka. Three have been lost in a train wreck.
posted by mcgraw on Dec 23, 2004 - 3 comments

Asia: Full of Grace

Asia Grace
posted by euphorb on Jul 21, 2004 - 6 comments

Evangelism in Sri Lanka

Globalized fundamentalism versus tradition. This report for the Society for International Development describes the efforts of foreign funded Christian evangelists to gain converts in Sri Lanka, which the author views as an assault on traditional Sri Lankan culture. There is a backlash, which some say is leading to the suppression of religious freedom and state sponsorship of Buddhism. [Via Plastic.]
posted by homunculus on Jan 5, 2004 - 10 comments

Buddhists go badass. "Rathana, an official with a powerful Buddhist group, dismisses Sri Lanka's peace process and urges renewed military action against Tamil Tiger separatists." Let me anticipate mefi's notorious left bunch of bananas and attribute it to this.
posted by jfuller on Nov 14, 2003 - 27 comments

Last week was a good week for aliens and a bad week for cows.

UFOs visited sacred sites and tourist attractions in Sri Lanka, Chile declared an official UFO tourism zone, and Scotland claims to have the most reported sightings each year.
much more inside...
posted by joemaller on Jun 25, 2002 - 5 comments

Amorous Monkey Business Outrages Town

Amorous Monkey Business Outrages Town A Sri Lankan town being terrorized a monkey (Important note: not a "Monkey Man" or "Invisible Bear") "flirting outrageously with cats and dogs". Aroused monkeys! Hide your children! (Another important note: This is in fact my first link. Be gentle)
posted by Kafkaesque on May 30, 2001 - 4 comments

While the latest chapter dates back to 1975 (ignited in 1948-49), the Sri Lankan conflict essentially stems from the answer to which of the two major ethnic groups landed first in the island some 2,500 years ago. Both sides now have websites which routinely boasts of the death tolls of the opposing group.
posted by tamim on Apr 28, 2001 - 3 comments

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