Thesis / Dissertation

The craft of belonging: exploring the resettlement experiences of young Tamil survivors of Sri Lanka’s civil war in Australia

Niroshini Kandasamy, Joy Damousi (ed.)

Published : 2019


Belonging and memory, shaped by social and political conditions of civil war and forced migration, are the central themes of this thesis. I explore the life stories of thirty-six young Tamil people who arrived in Australia in the 1980s and 1990s at the height of Sri Lanka’s civil war. The thesis demonstrates that life story, in its depth and richness of human experiences, is useful for examining Tamil people’s constructions of belonging over their life course: escaping civil war and persecution, rebuilding a sense of home in a new land, and reconstructing connections to the homeland in a post-war context. They do not simply choose to belong or not belong. Instead, young Tamils craft strategi..

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