Publication Type

Journal Article

Publication Date

11-2017

Abstract

This paper explores how Buddhist groups in Sri Lanka attempt to suppress conversion to Christianity. Conversion to Christianity can dilute the power and legitimacy of Buddhist groups, which has caused them to promote a discourse of ‘unethical’ conversion. My argument is that such a discourse is self-Orientalising in nature, and is designed to enable the (re)production of Buddhist hegemony in Sri Lanka. By constructing Buddhists as vulnerable and in need of protection, the hegemonic actions of Buddhist groups are validated. These constructions serve to restrict the religious (and socio-cultural) mobility of Buddhists, and to legitimise the persecution of Christians through both legislative and violent means. Sensitivity to the effects of self-Orientalism reveals the need for more critical readings of the effects of religious protectionism on both the Christian other, and the national self as well.

Keywords

Buddhist hegemony, evangelical Christianity, Religious conversio, n religious mobility, self-Orientalism, Sri Lanka

Discipline

Asian Studies | Religion

Research Areas

Humanities

Publication

Religion

First Page

1

Last Page

21

ISSN

0048-721X

Identifier

10.1080/0048721x.2017.1402831

Publisher

Elsevier / Taylor & Francis (Routledge): SSH Titles

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

Additional URL

https://doi.org/10.1080/0048721x.2017.1402831

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