Construction of Social Lives in Ethno-Politically Ruptured Sri Lanka

Anton Piyarathne
2014 International Journal of Social Science and Humanity  
At the end of the three decade old (ethnic) war, Sri Lankans are slowly but progressively moving towards reconciliation and, perhaps, to finding political solutions to many issues. This progress raises the question of how people from different ethnic and religious backgrounds collaborate when the political and social environment is still vulnerable to tensions and clashes. In order to explore this situation further, I carried out seventeen months of phenomenological research in Sri Lanka,
more » ... ing many examples of inter-ethnic collaborations. In this article, I describe such everyday collaborations through which I call "commongrounds", a concept I employ to illustrate the ways and means in which the multi-ethnic middle-class community create harmonious social space for everyone to share in ethno-politically volatile Sri Lankan society. I will draw upon insights from Barth, Harrison, Bourdieu and Neofotistos to discuss my research findings on how members of Sri Lanka's middle-class community create everyday relationships based upon their own classifications of "good" and "bad", which cross rigid ethnic boundaries.
doi:10.7763/ijssh.2014.v4.396 fatcat:ozkwg5rizva33if4ssbqvqdyhe