Posts Categorized: Sri Kantha

Prof. Carlo Fonseka (1933-2019)

The Barnum of Sri Lanka by Sachi Sri Kantha, November 20, 2019 Prof. Carlo Fonseka, who died on September 2, 2019 at the age of 86, belongs to my tribe. Born in Sri Lanka 20 years apart (I’m his junior) and we both had a professional career as an academic in mostly university setting. Due… Read more »

From Sachi’s Files – Chapter 10

An American Nurse in Jaffna – 80 years Ago by Sachi Sri Kantha, August 30, 2019 Eighty years ago, the American Journal of Nursing published a four page article of by Ms. Annette Beals, in its Sept. 1939 issue (vol.39, pages 991-994). See below. She had visited the Green Memorial Hospital in Manipay and reported… Read more »

A Sin-eater’s (Lakshman Kadirgamar) Story

by Sachi Sri Kantha, August 10, 2019 Book Review: ‘The Cake that was Baked at Home – Lakshman Kadirgamar, Snapshotsof the Man’s Life and Times by his Daughter’, by Ajita Kadirgamar, Vijitha Yapa Publications, Colombo, 2nd ed., 2016, 522 pages. Fourteen years had passed since Lakshman Kadirgamar (1932-2005) was assassinated on August 12th. Though the… Read more »

MGR Remembered – Part 53

Anna’s Death and Aftermath by Sachi Sri Kantha, July 30, 2019 Part 52 On June 10th, MGR biographer Kannan sent me the following thoughts, after reading Part 52 of this series. “Thank you for Part 52 which I read in one breath. Yes. It could certainly form a subject of research. I don’t remember seeing… Read more »

The Muslim Factor in Sri Lankan Ethnic Crisis

by Ameer Ali, 1997 A Critical Front-Note by Sachi Sri Kantha, July 25, 2019 ‘Under the bamboo Bamboo bamboo Under the bamboo tree Two live as one One live as two Two live as three Under the bam Under the boo Under the bamboo tree.’ S.Eliot’s lines in the verse, ‘Sweeney Agonistes’, 1926-27. In a… Read more »

From Sachi’s Files – Chapter 9

Kothamangalam Subbu’s Poem on Jaffna Tamils by Sachi Sri Kantha, July 17, 2019 Polymath Poet Kothamangalam Subbu (1910-1974) has a reputation which many cannot easily match. Apart from being a poet, he was also a movie actor – director, lyricist, script writer, novelist, short story writer, folk lore expert and an exponent in Villu Paatu,… Read more »

From Sachi’s Files – Chapter 8

My First Foray into Research in Sexuality by Sachi Sri Kantha, June 30, 2019   Forty years had passed since I made a 15 minutes presentation on December 18, 1979 at the 35th Annual Sessions of the Sri Lanka Association for the Advancement of Science at the University of Colombo premises, on an ‘eye-catching’ and controversial… Read more »

MGR Remembered – Part 52

Concepts on Humor and Comedians by Sachi Sri Kantha, June 9, 2019 Part 51 Correspondence with Kannan on Karunanidhi For additional clarification on the theme covered in Part 51, I provide the email correspondence (4 items) I had with fellow MGR biographer Kannan. I reproduce these below with his permission. Item 1: From Kannan to… Read more »

Mervyn de Silva on Prabhakaran and Tamil-Muslim Antipathy

by Sachi Sri Kantha, May 17, 2019 Front Note by Sachi Since the last April 21st Easter Sunday’s multiple suicide attacks by the Muslim participants on Christian Churches and hotels in Colombo, there have been lopsided comparisons by ignoramus journalists and knee jerk commentators covering the major media outlets to the LTTE’s separatist war with… Read more »

MGR Remembered – Part 51

About the Plagiarism charge on Karunanidhi Part 50 by Sachi Sri Kantha, May 5, 2019 In Part 48, I commented on MGR’s own selection of his best movies. Among the 14 movies, the second in his list Marutha Naatu Ilavarasi (The Princess from Marutha Nadu,1950; produced by G. Govindan & Co.) was in the news… Read more »

Col. Karuna of Pre-March 2004 Period: Where are You Now?

by Sachi Sri Kantha, April 6, 2019 Calling the then Col. Karuna (of the LTTE, pre 2004 period) – aka Vinayagamoorthy Muralitharan. Where are you now? Do you remember an almost 800 word puff piece written by a BBC correspondent, in March 2004 that received world-wide currency. [See below, for a transcript of this report… Read more »

MGR Remembered – Part 50

Teaching with Songs by Sachi Sri Kantha, March 28, 2019 Part 49 Meaningful Songs as a Teaching Instrument Since talkies came into existence, it had been the cultural tradition in Indian movies that songs and singing became an essential component for education and entertainment. Almost all the first generation lead actors (men and women) including… Read more »

From Sachi’s Files – Chapter 7

A Ban on showing the ‘Avvaiyar’ Tamil Movie – 40 Years Ago by Sachi Sri Kantha, March 12, 2019 While digging through my old diary entries, I came across a news item that mentioned about a public ban on showing the Avvaiyar Tamil movie of 1953 in Colombo. For historical record, I provide a scan… Read more »

MGR Remembered – Part 49

A Vibrant ‘Vaathiyar’ to the Illiterates by Sachi Sri Kantha, February 19, 2019 Part 48 Thomas Edison (1847-1931) was one of the pioneers in contributing to the origin of motion pictures. One of his quotes pertaining to this invention was, ‘I consider that the first mission of the motion picture is to make people happy,… Read more »

George Fernandes (1930-2019) – A Requiem

by Sachi Sri Kantha, February 1, 2019 Indian politician George Fernandes, variously tagged as ‘a socialist firebrand’, ‘fighter of lost causes’ passed into history on January 29, 2019. Many Eelam Tamils and sympathizers of the demand of Eelam Tamils were undoubtedly saddened by this news. He was a rarity among Indian politicians, and his public… Read more »

MGR Remembered – Part 48

100 Movies and Beyond by Sachi Sri Kantha, January 16, 2018 Part 47 Khushwant Singh’s portrayal of MGR Khushwant Singh (1915-2014), the doyen among the Indian journalists of his generation, contributed a feature on the status of Indian movies, to the New York Times, in 1976. For this feature, he had interviewed a few prominent… Read more »

From Sachi’s Files – Chapter 6

A 20 year Old Letter to Dayan Jayatilleka by Sachi Sri Kantha, December 14, 2018 Front Note As of now, I have published five chapters in this series. Chapter 1 (posted May 17, 2015): https://sangam.org/sachis-files-chapter-1/ Chapter 2 (posted July 18, 2015): https://sangam.org/sachis-files-chapter-2/ Chapter 3 (posted Aug 21, 2015): https://sangam.org/sachis-files-chapter-3/ Chapter 4 (posted Oct. 16, 2015):… Read more »

MGR Remembered – Part 47

Comparison of Chaplin and MGR by Sachi Sri Kantha, December 9, 2018 Part 46 Front Note In the previous Part 46 covering the two MGR Pictures movies, ‘Nadodi Mannan’ (1958) and ‘Adimai Penn’ (1969), I had presented the emblem of MGR Pictures for the two movies. In the color emblem shown for ‘Adimai Penn’, there… Read more »

Onomastics of Tamil Personal Names – Part 3

by Sachi Sri Kantha, November 25, 2018 Part 1 Introduction More than 18 months had passed, since I contributed Part 2 of this series. In it, I presented the Eelam Tamil names of the renowned intelligentsia of the 19th century, as culled from Sanmugam Arumugam’s ‘Dictionary of Biography of the Ceylon Tamils (1997). In this part 3,… Read more »

Peer Review on Two Recently Published Papers about the LTTE

by Sachi Sri Kantha, November 18, 2018 Note: Whole of last month, I was busy with my move from Gifu City to Tokyo. Uprooting myself and my library collections, from a place where I had lived for nearly 19 years, was a heavy burden to this bibliophile. I had to voluntarily dispose of almost half… Read more »