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SAC Presents: Dennis McGilvary

341 Eggers Hall

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Sri Lankan Muslims:Between Ethno-nationalism and the Global Ummah Although the LTTE (Tamil Tiger) rebels were defeated by Sri Lankan government forces in May 2009, the island’s Muslim minority still face threats of Tamil ethno-linguistic nationalism and pro-Sinhala Buddhist government land and resettlement policies. In addition, localized conflicts have arisen within the Sri Lankan Muslim community between popular Sufi sheiks and followers of hostile Islamic reformist movements energized by ideas and resources from the global ummah, or world community of Muslims. This simultaneous combination of “external” ethno-nationalist rivalries and “internal” Islamic doctrinal conflict has placed Sri Lanka’s Muslims in a double bind: how to defend against Tamil and Sinhalese ethnic hegemonies while not appearing to embrace an Islamist or jihadist agenda. This talk traces the development of Sri Lankan Muslim identity in the 20th century, then examines the recent anti-Sufi violence that threatens to divide the Sri Lankan Muslim community today. 

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Exterior of Maxwell in black and white when there was no Eggers building

We’re Turning 100!

To mark our centennial in the fall of 2024, the Maxwell School will hold special events and engagement opportunities to celebrate the many ways—across disciplines and borders—our community ever strives to, as the Oath says, “transmit this city not only not less, but greater, better and more beautiful than it was transmitted to us.”

Throughout the year leading up to the centennial, engagement opportunities will be held for our diverse, highly accomplished community that now boasts more than 38,500 alumni across the globe.