Village Life in the Forties: Memories of a Lankan Expatriate

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iUniverse, Jul 31, 2012 - Biography & Autobiography - 178 pages

When author Shelton A. Gunaratne was born in January of 1940 in Pathegama, Sri Lanka, life was simple for the poor people in this sparsely populated village. But it was this village that raised him. Through twenty-six biographical sketches of some of the villages most colorful characters, Gunaratne paints a portrait of what life was like in this rural setting.

This collection of sketches, first published in the Ceylon Daily NewsMyna, the new village head-man; Vel Vidane, an unctuous official and the irrigation headman; cowards Wala Semba and Naamba; Singappuru Basunnehe, the goldsmith; Kankanama, the cinnamon peeler; Kalu Appu, the fierce burglar; Redi Nenda, the humble washerwoman; Menike Nenda, a village beauty; and Kunu Nachchile, the witchlike animal lover.

Demonstrating the Buddhist/Daoist principle that unity and diversity are inextricably interconnected, Village Life in the Forties provides not only a social history, but also a greater global under-standing of the life and times of rural Ceylonese during and around World War II.

 

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Contents

Cannibals Invade Village
1
Loku Maama Makes the Big Time
5
Punchi Amma Says GoodBye
10
Menike Nenda Goes to the Bioscope
14
Bandarawela Bappa Takes on Myna
19
The Toddy Tapper
25
Robin Hood of Galagamulla
31
Lord of the Rice Paddies
35
Loku Maama Outsmarts Thief Parties with Pals
93
Rise and Fall of Ralahamy Sr
99
The Washerwoman
105
Heroes or Villains?
110
Seetha and Maggie Take Different Paths
115
Kankanama Mixed Peeling with Feeling
121
An Honest Animal Lover
127
Ghosakaya and Goluwa
131

A Halfway Intellectual
41
Myna Loses His Konde Knot of Hair
48
Vote for Menna Mahattaya
55
Kalu Appu Ends His Terror Folks Celebrate
61
Testing Real Life on a Bike
68
Like Father Like Son
75
Honest Goldsmith
81
Getting Cashew Nutty
87
Four Merry Gentlemen
136
Simpleton or Entertainer?
140
Two Short Fictions
147
The Curse of the Gods
149
Avurudda Brings Hope to Daydreamer
154
Last Word
161
Copyright

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About the author (2012)

Shelton A. Gunaratne, PhD, was a journalism professor at Minnesota State University Moorhead. He specialized in economics at the University of Ceylon and started his career as a journalist at the Ceylon Daily News. His publications include the Dao of the Press and the Handbook of the Media in Asia.

Bibliographic information