By Suvendrini Perera (auth.)
Drawing on a number of expressive varieties and acts - the hobbies of refugee boats, the poetics of hip-hop, narratives of atrocity and survival - this e-book develops the idea that of 'survival media' even though the tales and mobilities of the thirty-year warfare in Sri Lanka. relocating among the hip-hop of M.I.A. and Human Rights stories, satellite tv for pc maps and survivor tales, it indicates how this battle in a small state can be enmeshed with severe worldwide matters akin to the consequences of the warfare on terror, the formations of diasporic identities and the hardening politics of borders.
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Extra info for Survival Media: The Politics and Poetics of Mobility and the War in Sri Lanka
Their passages and blockages, makeshift way stations and covert meeting points, map improbable itineraries, eke spaces for movement out of rock and razor wire. Following from Arjun Appadurai’s theorisation of the imagination as an ‘organized field of social practices . . [that] is now central to all forms of agency, is itself a social fact, and is the key component of the new global order’ (2003, 30), refugees and illegalised migrants are understood as ‘imagineers’ of multiple forms and modalities of flight and fancy that are at once forms of agency and ‘social fact’.
Sivanesan’s performance-lectures are an attempt to connect the underworld of Sanjeev/Alex’s ambivalent simulations as a ‘captain of fakery’ with the mixed-media of Sivanesan’s own performances. At the intersection of artistic-academic practice and the performances of Sanjeev/Alex’s multiple biographies, Sivanesan claims a space for their shared political investments in undoing the violent policing of borders and the interdictions that govern the bodies of refugees. Transposed from his performances aboard the Jeya Lestari to the space of the gallery and lecture theatre through the mediating figure of Sivanesan as artist, the persona of ‘Alex’, Sivanesan argues, may function at least fleetingly to ‘cut through political manoeuvring and obfuscation and transform social relations between citizens and non-citizens’ (2013, 139).
A statement of intent and a callout to the future, it flutters, then flies, for now, in the uncertain shelter of this strange harbour. In flight: a double-edged phrase, whose Janus-face looks back and forward, betokening both the fears it seeks to escape, the terrors of the past and present, and the dare of joys ahead. Within fraught refugee geographies of peril and possibility, a voyage across oceans in a small boat, flight signifies at once the covert or embattled movements that attempt escape from desperate situations and the soaring hopes and aspirations of those in flight.