International Development, Community, and Environment

Title

There's a Devil on Wayamba Beach: Social Dramas of Development and Citizenship in Northwest Sri Lanka

Document Type

Article

Abstract

In this article we draw upon religious sermons, poetry and first-person accounts to show how rural Sri Lankans used localized meanings of security and sacrifice to mobilize against a project of national development. Using Victor Turner's concept of social drama and the idea that state officials and citizens relate as audiences of each others' actions, we bring the methodological lens of performance to the study of citizenship, development, and legitimacy. The authors find that people's attempt to transform everyday meaning into legitimate meaning forms a profound kernel in the process of making of state-society relations.

Publication Title

Journal of Asian and African Studies

Publication Date

1-1-2007

Volume

42

Issue

5

First Page

415

Last Page

445

ISSN

0021-9096

DOI

10.1177/0021909607081122

Keywords

Catholic church, citizenship, legitimacy, performance, Sri Lanka, state-society relations

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