Shyam Selvadurai: Funny Boy

(1335 words)
  • Neluka Silva (University of Colombo)

Shyam Selvadurai was born in 1965 in Sri Lanka and moved with his family to Toronto, Canada in 1984. Funny Boy is Selvadurai's first novel. It is set in Sri Lanka, and is constructed in the form of six beautifully rendered stories about a boy growing up within an extended upper-middle-class Tamil family in Colombo during the seven years leading up to the 1983 riots, when he and his family sleep in their shoes so they can flee from the Sinhalese mobs. When Selvadurai's Funny Boy was published in 1994, it was hailed as one of the most powerful renditions of the trauma of the prevailing ethnic tensions in contemporary Sri Lanka. Selvadurai brings together the struggles of class, ethnicity and sexuality. These issues are …

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Silva, Neluka. "Funny Boy". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 01 July 2003
[, accessed 29 September 2016.]