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By: Palitha Ganewatta

A Tale from a Promised Land

Pages: 234 Ratings:
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This novel tells the story of three generations of an Australian-Sri Lankan migrant family. After a bomb explodes near two leading schools in the city of Colombo, he persuades his wife that for the sake of their children they must leave and start a new life in Australia. After her mother passes away, her father — a retired school principal — agrees to join them in Australia.

The novel identifies the travails that beset new migrants from traditional conservative Asian backgrounds to a western oriented materialistic culture, which now accepts migrants from multi-cultural and multi-lingual backgrounds but expects the new arrivals to assimilate and integrate with the society of which they now form a part.

This novel provides deep insights into socio-cultural and psychological barriers encountered by a first generation of Sri Lankan migrants after their arrival in a new country. Through the combined interactions of a few protagonists, the novel depicts the struggles of socio-cultural adjustments, gains and pains of a South Asian migrant family who try to adjust their lives in a country with western socio-economic and cultural values.

Palitha Ganewatta was born in Sri Lanka and obtained his Ph.D. from Moscow Friendship University in 1987. He migrated to Australia in 1992 where he made his home. He was employed by Australian Federal Government and also worked as a Broadcaster and Journalist in Special Broadcasting Service in Australia (SBS) for 21 years. He has translated Anton Chekhov’s short stories from original Russian to his mother tongue, Sinhalese. He has published short stories, novels and poems in Sinhalese language and currently engaged in translating Reymond Carver’s American short stories into his mother tongue.

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