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Decolonisation, Development and Disease: A Social History of Malaria in Sri Lanka
Kalinga Tudor Silva
Price : ₹ 1050.00  
ISBN : 9788125054290
Language : English
Pages : 272
Binding : Hardback
Book Size : 140 x 216 mm
Year : 2014
Series : New Perspectives in South Asian History
Territorial Rights : World
Imprint : No Image
About the Book

The 1901 Census of Ceylon identified malaria as a “bane” of the island. And through the ensuing century a story of development has sprung around the control of this endemic disease. A story of development that is scripted by a postcolonial state, as it grew to espouse a hegemonic Sinhala nationalist ideology.

Decolonisation, Development and Disease looks at the dynamic interplay between malaria and its social, political and environmental milieu in Sri Lanka over an 80-year period from 1930 to 2010. The volume begins with an ethno-historical account of the accumulated body of indigenous knowledge and practices and cultural adaptation to fevers and how it saw a rapid decline with the arrival of western medicine. Then it analyses the consequences of the devastating malaria epidemic of 1934–35, which, affecting mainly the Sinhala South, in some ways shaped Sri Lanka’s transition from a colony to a postcolonial developmental state. The book also examines the manner in which civil war (1983–2009) triggered yet another outbreak of a malaria epidemic.

Employing postcolonial studies, post-development and discourse analysis, and examining colonial records, government statistics, oral history, ethnographic research and newspapers, this book challenges the conventional modernist wisdom relating to the role of tropical medicine in combating disease and points to the social and historical embeddedness of malaria epidemics.

Arriving at a time of reconciliation in Sri Lanka, this volume will be of interest to ethnographers, social historians, public health experts, administrators and students of political science.

Table of Contents

List of Tables
List of Maps
List of Figures
List of Abbreviations

  1. Mapping of Fevers in British Ceylon
  2. An Ethno-history of Malaria in Nuwarakalaviya
  3. Mixing Politics with Quinine: The 1934–35 Malaria Epidemic in Sri Lanka
  4. Development and the Resurgence of Malaria in Sri Lanka  
  5. War-Induced Malaria Outbreak in Northern Sri Lanka 1990 to 2002
  6. Conclusion and Reflections


Contributors (Author(s), Editor(s), Translator(s), Illustrator(s) etc.)

Kalinga Tudor Silva is Senior Professor at the Department of Sociology, University of Peradeniya, Sri Lanka.