A History of Sri Lanka

A History of Sri Lanka

Product ID: 17074

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Author: K M De Silva
Publisher: Penguin
Year: 2005-04-01
Language: English
Pages: 799
ISBN/UPC (if available): 0-14-400015-6


The history of Sri Lanka from the earliest times to the present.

Sri Lanka is an ancient civilization, shaped and thrust into the modern globalizing world by its colonial experience. With its own unique problems, many of them historical legacies, it is a nation trying to maintain a democratic, pluralistic state structure while struggling to come to terms with separatist aspirations. This is a complex story, and there is perhaps no better person to present it in reasoned, scholarly terms than K M de Silva, Sri Lanka’s most distinguished and prolific historian.

A History of Sri Lanka, first published in 1981, has established itself as the standard work on the subject. This fully revised edition, in light of the most recent research, brings the story right up to the early years of the twenty-first century. The book provides comprehensive coverage of all aspects of Sri Lanka’s development-from a classical Buddhist society and irrigation economy, to its emergence as a tropical colony producing some of the world’s most important cash crops, such as cinnamon, tea, rubber and coconut, and finally as an Asian democracy.

It is a study of the political vicissitudes of Sri Lanka’s ancient civilization and the successive phases of Portuguese, Dutch and British colonial rule. The unfortunate consequences of becoming a centre of ethnic tension and Sri Lanka’s long-standing relationship with India are also discussed.

Exhaustively researched and analytical, this book is an invaluable reference source for students of ancient, colonial and post-colonial societies, ethnic conflict and democratic transitions, as well as for all those who simply want to get a feel of the rich and varied texture of Sri Lanka’s long history.





Colonizers and Settlers
The Anuradhapura Kingdom I: Aspects of Political History from Saddhatissa to the Cola Conquest
The Anuradhapura Kingdom II: an Irrigation Civilization
The Anuradhapura Kingdom III: The Political Economy
The Anuradhapura Kingdom IV: A Buddhist civilization
The Polonnaruva Kingdom: Indian summer of Sinhalese Power
The Fragmentation of the Sri Lankan Polity: from C 1250 to the End of the Fifteenth Century
The Periphery stakes a claim
The Crisis of the Sixteenth Century
Portuguese Rule in the Maritime Regions, c 1600-58
The Kandyan Kingdom at Bay, 1658-87
The Struggle for Mastery over Sri Lanka, c 1680-1766
Trade and Agriculture Under the Voc
The Voc in Sri Lanka: The Last Phase, 1767-96
The Impact of Dutch Rule
Religion, Literature and the Arts in the Kandyan Kingdom
The English East India company in Sri Lanka, 1796-1802
The Fall of the Kandyan Kingdom
Economic and Social Change in the Early Nineteenth Century, 1802-32
Crown Colony Government, 1802-32
An Era of reform and reconstruction, 1833-50
A Plantation Economy, 1850-1910
Peasant Agriculture, 1850-1910
The consolidation of British Rule: The Triumph of Conservatism
Education and Social Change in the Late Nineteenth Century
Religion and the rise of Nationalism, C 1870-1900
Politics and Constitutional Reform in the Late Nineteenth Century
Politics and Constitutional Reform in the Late Nineteenth Century
Political Change in the Early Twentieth Century
Elite Conflict and the Ceylon National congress, 1921-28
Social and Economic Change in the Early Twentieth century, 1910-28
The Donoughmore commission and its recommendations, 1927-31
The Politics of the Transfer of Power: The fist Phase, 1931-42
D S Senanayake and the Passage
To dominion Status, 1942-47
Literature and the Arts: The Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries
Sri Lanka Since independence: the Dominance of the UNP, 1947-56
Linguistic Nationalism and A socialist Experiment, 1956-77
A Change of Regime: 1977-94