In 1516, the capital, Colombo, was occupied by the Dutch. In 1518, Portugal also wanted the island as a colony; between 1796 and 1948, it was under British occupation.
A tsunami in 2004 killed 45,000 people. Sonali Deranyiagala’s memoir essay about the catastrophe “Wave”, which became a bestseller in the USA in 2013, is recommended.
Buddhism, Hinduism, Christianity, Islam: ‘Sri Lanka’ (population: 20 million) means ‘venerable island’. It lies 200 kilometres off the southern tip of India. Between 1983 and 2009, a civil war raged between the Sinhalese and the Tamils, the island’s largest ethnic minority.
Stefan Mesch about Travel Sketches from Sri Lanka
Kleist’s 14 (often double-page) Sri Lanka drawings come particularly close to the aesthetic of several Kleist comic books: pronounced shadows, male bodies and faces, twilight. A good introduction!"