Immigrant protests in Toronto: diaspora and Sri Lanka's civil war

Ishan Ashutosh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

As Sri Lanka's civil war escalated in the spring of 2009, protests led by the Sri Lankan Tamil diaspora in Toronto appealed for an immediate ceasefire agreement between the Sri Lankan government and the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE). Held simultaneously in Chennai, London, and Oslo, the protests called for an end to the hostilities in Sri Lanka as well as recognition of the legitimacy of Tamil Eelam, a separate nation state for Tamils in Sri Lanka. Based on interviews and media coverage in Toronto, this article investigates how these ‘immigrant protests’ constituted ‘transnational acts of citizenship’. I examine the Toronto protests through three acts in the protest that challenged the exclusions of national citizenship by moving from Toronto's streets, statist discourses of Canadian citizenship, and the violence of war in Sri Lanka. Although these transnational acts of citizenship were rendered inaudible in public culture, the article concludes by exploring the possibilities of citizenship and belonging in the Sri Lankan Tamil diaspora following the defeat of the LTTE.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)197-210
JournalCitizenship Studies
Volume17
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2013

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