In the contribution to the Ethnopolitics special issue on “Sri Lankan Diasporas between Participation and Conflict: Intergroup Dynamics in Italy”, Anna Quattrone investigates how Sinhalese and Tamil diasporas in Italy perceive themselves and forge their relationship with the homeland conflict.
Building on interviews and an extensive analysis of secondary sources, the paper aims to explore what configurations, events and policies activate or prevent conflict transportation and/or autonomisation in diaspora settings. With a focus on the processes of identification and mobilisation of Sinhalese and Tamil diasporas in Italy, the paper investigates whether the features that characterised conflictual dynamics in Sri Lanka have been transported to Italy and how they have been configured here (reproduction versus autonomisation).
The paper shows that in Italy the transported conflict has taken different configurations as compared to Sri Lanka, in fact both conflict autonomisation and conflict neutralisation are present in the new context of settlement. Moreover, new forms and purposes of political mobilisation have emerged, depending on the diasporic generation and the peculiarities of the new context. Finally, the paper argues that, in a globalised world, diasporas and other transnational actors can effectively mobilise to pursue their goals in a deterritorialised political space, as the Sri Lankan case demonstrates.
[The full article is available here.]