Jean Arasanayagam: Apocalypse '83 (1983 words)


Originally published in 1984 and republished in 2003, Jean Arasanayagam's Apocalypse '83 is a collection of poems that came out of her experiences of ethnic riots in July 1983 which would spark the beginning of the Sri Lankan civil war (1983-2009). Apocalypse '83 is arguably Arasanayagam's most well known work and continues to provide an important personal narrative and insight to the violence of the civil war, particularly the contested spaces of national identity within the postcolonial state (Ho & Rambukwella 2006, 63; Nimavat 2011, 231; Siegle 2015, 39; Vriend 2005, iv). This collection helps to position the exclusionary identity politics of the nation state alongside the exclusionary identity …

Citation: Ward, Shelby E.. "Apocalypse '83". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 27 September 2018 [, accessed 22 January 2021.]

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