"A deft handling of Sri Lanka... light, unlaboured but deeply engrossing..."
--The Ceylon Daily News
"In Pradeep Jeganathan's At the Water's Edge, you get to feel Sri Lanka's raw edge...it says much in a few words."---The Lonely Planet Guide (Sri Lanka)
"In this finely sculpted collection of interwoven stories, he draws out the complexity of Sri Lankan lives in personal tales of disempowerment, disconnectedness, poverty, violence and civil war that has scarred this nation so deeply...Most importantly, these are stories that resist simple answers, and fast, cheap conclusions. The tight, sinewy prose rejects sentimentalism and any play towards melodrama. The stories are startling, precisely because they can so easily slip under the radar, and reveal their true arsenal only on later reflection. This is an assured and intelligent collection, and an important examination of contemporary issues and lives in this country."----The Nation on Sunday.
This now classic work provides challenging new ways of thinking about nationalism, colonialism and modernity, in Sri Lanka. Situated at the conceptual intersection of history and identity, the essays in the volume denaturalizes the claims of the nation, taking it apart analytically, pointing to hidden relations of power and inequality that undergird it.
First published in Sri Lanka in 1995, as a sequel to Ethnicity and Social Change (1984) &Facets of Ethnicity (1988), this much cited collection has been out of print for years. It is now available in a new, global edition, published in May 2009, with a new preface and comprehensive index.
Chapters: • Dehistoricising History (David Scott) • Multireligion on the Bus: Beyond ‘Influence’ and ‘Syncretism’ in the Study of Religious Meetings (Jonathan S. Walters) • Unmooring Identity: The Antinomies of Elite Muslim Self-Representation in Modern Sri Lanka (Qadri Ismail) • Authorizing History, Ordering Land: The Conquest of Anuradhapura (Pradeep Jeganathan) • Gender, Politics and the Respectable Lady’ (Malathi de Alwis) • Gendering Tamil Nationalism: The Construction of ‘Woman’ in Projects of Protest and Control (Sitralega Maunaguru) • The Efficacy of ‘Combat Mode’: Organisation, Political Violence, Affect and Cognition in the Case of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (P. L. de Silva) • Narratives of Victimhood as Ethnic Identity Among the Veddasof the East Coast (Yuvi Thangarajah).