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pipercarter:

Empire Line (2005) series by British photographer Gavin Fernandes.

Fernandes describes the series in British Asian Style: Fashion & Textiles / Past and Present:

By subverting representations of British “memsahibs” and their indigenous Indian servants, and through the interaction of period British costume and native Indian dress, Empire Line explores the politics of clothing and its relationship with class and caste in 19th-century colonial India.

Though so rooted in colonial imagery, I love how Fernandes’s work also speaks to the complex and often problematic cultural exchanges of the contemporary fashion industry.

If we could stop pretending like systemic violence/oppression isn’t as Sri Lankan as kawum and kokis, that would be great. Just a quick walk down memory lane would show us that, whether it’s in the form of Buddhist Chauvanism (best oxymoron so far) or Tamil seperatism, radicalism and its consequences moulded and maintains the current political structure. I mean, the years we’ve spent in war time - and the destruction and traumas and paranoia that go along with it - dwarves our peace time gains. It’s really about time we stopped worrying about rocking a boat thats already capsizing, and for systemic changes that address structural violence, because the status quo will almost surely ensure that we’ll go down with it, come hell or high water.

While BBS may amplify only a minority Sinhalese view, what’s important, vis a vis the current situation, is that it has the power to wreak havoc in society at large. In this light, maintaining that its only a fringe movement is to entirely overlook how systemic violence/racism has worked to fuel the oppression of minories - which, given our history, is irresponsible at best. So yeah, dont do it. Please.