Kataragama in a time of national crisis. Diversity and exclusion in a sacred place in Sri Lanka

Led by Iselin Frydenlund

May 2011 – Dec 2003

MA thesis; History of Religion, University of Oslo.

This thesis discusses Kataragama, one of the most important pilgrimage sites in Sri Lanka, famous for the high degree of peaceful coexistence between various ethnic and religious groups found there. Two important ‘discourses’ in Kataragama are discussed: one interprets Kataragama as a place for unity and as a vehicle for peace in Sri Lanka; the other interprets Kataragama from an exclusivist point of view, where cultural and religious diversity is not recognized.

Supervisors: Per Kværne, Uio; Henrik Syse, PRIO. The thesis was completed in September 2003, defended in December 2003.

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