South Asia Seminar: Anushiya Ramaswamy, Professor of English, Department of English Language and Literature, Southern Illinois University Edwardsville
“After the “Unthinkable”: Cheran’s Poetry”
This is part of the introduction to the forthcoming translation of Cheran’s poetry written in the aftermath of the May 18, 2009 massacre of Sri Lankan Tamils by the State’s armed forces at Mullivaikal. Cheran’s poems and other writings — on grief, love, land and exile — are made in the midst of unimaginable state-sponsored violence against minority bodies. I provide a historiographical background in terms of the various discourses that were coming into prominence in the 1960’s and ’70’s as he came of age — for instance, a narrowing post-independence nationalism , a thriving literary Saivism, and through it all, the steady rise of state power and its attendant resistances.
Thursday, January 23, 2020 – 5:00pm