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THE SAFFRON ARMY, VIOLENCE, TERROR(ISM): BUDDHISM, IDENTITY, AND DIFFERENCE IN SRI LANKA

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This paper proposes alternative approaches to conceptualizing the relation between religion and violence, Buddhism and terror(ism). An important body of scholarship seeks to theorize religion and violence as transparent objects of disciplinary knowledge in terms of their supposed difference or interrelation, while chronically failing to appreciate them as discursive categories. The relation between religion and violence, the paper contends, is not available for disciplinary canonization as it is conventionally conceived in the now familiar terms of "Buddhism Betrayed?," "religious violence," "religious terrorism," etc. Rather the questions, terms, and parameters defining which persons, practices, and knowledges can and cannot count as religion or violence, civilization or terror are produced, battled out, and subverted in minute contingent conjunctures. Put differently, they are authorized to come into (central) view and fade from view, to emerge and submerge, to become centered and decentered within a microspace of competing authoritative "native" debates and discourses.

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/content/journals/10.1163/156852701300052339
2001-01-01
2016-12-04

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