Discussions of Sri Lanka’s political futures – in international media, policy thinktanks and human rights groups – have been for some time now been cast in simple terms. They present an uncompromising, militaristic “Sinhala-dominated regime” and a “marginalised Tamil minority”, once authoritatively represented by Tiger rebels, now routed militarily. Given this framework, “a political solution” with “autonomous self-rule” for the Tamils is urged.
Framing non-European societies as collections of prescriptive communities has been for several centuries now been a persuasive and authoritative way of knowing that certainly has some truth value. But as Edward Said has shown, such an Orientalist orientation can also freeze our understandings into a dichotomy of “west” versus an ethnicised “rest”, which is more about the authority of the knower, than the life worlds of the known.… Seguir leyendo »