Literary Application for the Cultural Heritage
- Life style,
- Literary practice
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This article explores the mechanism by which the literary endeavours of the numerically small communities in Eastern Sri Lanka operate as the cultural heritage of those communities. Cultural heritage refers to the behaviours, activities, materials, and traditions maintained to identify the identity and continuity of a community or race. In an environment where cultural oppression is being shaped as a political practice, it is felt necessary for a society to retain its lifestyle and identity rights. It is both essential and at the same time challenging for a small community to learn its cultural traditions in a multicultural environment. The majority culture is being generalized and the cultures of minority communities are being transformed and disappeared. In this situation, a community has to keep its heritage domains in practice to sustain its existence. Language and its art - literature, are paramount in these domains. This is because the identity and organization of a community are primarily based on the language of that community. The numerically small communities of Eastern Sri Lanka, such as the Vedar, Kuravar, Burgher and Kaffir communities, have distinctive language practices and literary works. However, in the context of the majority of Sinhala and Tamil communities of Sri Lanka, the learning of a small community remains in crisis. In this case, the article outlines how the literature of these communities is used as part of maintaining these identities. This article also highlights the use of cultural legacy for the existence of such communities.
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