Learning Politics From Sivaram: The Life and Death of a Revolutionary Tamil Journalist in Sri Lanka
by Mark P. Whitaker
Pluto Press, 2007
Cloth: 978-0-7453-2354-1 | Paper: 978-0-7453-2353-4
Library of Congress Classification PN5449.S75Z734 2007
Dewey Decimal Classification 322.42092

This is the story of the life and impact of the political activist, journalist, and freedom fighter Sivaram Dharmeratnam. Sivaram dedicated his life to helping the Tamil people. He started out as an active participant in the war against the Sri Lankan government—in the eyes of some, a "terrorist." Yet he eventually renounced the violence it involved. Instead, he became a journalist and used his position to fearlessly critique the government—despite repeated threats on his life and the murders of other journalists. Finally, in 2005, Sivaram himself was assassinated.

This remarkable book is both an intimate portrait of the man and a fascinating account of the political dilemmas that he faced—and that still face us today. It explains how an educated man adopts a position of supporting violence. And while his position softens, Sivaram remains critical of the liberal principles that govern Western policy. Written by a close friend, this unique account highlights some of the most difficult political questions facing us today.

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