Anti-elitism & Academic Wandering

Royal College: Is It Wrong to be Proud of One’s Alma Mater?

The progressive elements of the society should not be dark green about the people born to the purple, simply just because they were not privileged to attend an elite college such as Royal, St. Thomas, Trinity, Ananda or Dharmaraja

I have recently come across an article written by an ex-leftist exhibiting an unbearable animosity towards the elites. His text echoes the groans, moans and grunts of the inferiority complex that has been making his soul uncomfortable. Although he declares quite often that he has abandoned the motifs of Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP) at least by May 1989, he has not yet cast off the old JVP mentality. He needs to appreciate that even the modern JVP under Anura Kumar Dissanaike has seceded greatly from the disgraceful antagonism towards the privileged personalities. Perhaps, it may be this particular ex-leftist’s style of writing and strategy of debating that he hurls stones to the elite. Be it bona fide or mala fide, his text calls upon and deserves a Glasgow kiss.

This particular ex-leftist has bombarded the psyche of alma mater centred identification of personalities, throughout his text. It is not a claim that we should disagree with at all. “Philosophers have hitherto only interpreted the world in various ways; the point is to change it” said Karl Marx in his Eleventh Thesis on Feuerbach in German Ideology. This particular ex-leftist is a classical living-example of that thesis. The same man who ridiculed the discriminatory treatment of individuals on their alma mater, has ultimately done the very exact thing what he has just renounced a few paragraphs before. He has put his foot in his mouth as he identifies Wamaa by his alma mater, Prince of Wales College or Dinesh Gunawardene by his alma mater, Royal College

This particular ex-leftist as usual has hurled a stone to the modern day leftists as well, towards the end of his text. But once more, the projection is out of the target. He has just rotated in the circumference without even looking at the centre. Consequently, the central concept of nationalism eluded him. Marxist or rather specifically Leninist doctrine of nationalism for the suppressed class is a facilitating vessel to reach the sovereignty of freedom. It is a mean to withstand the insults of the suppressor class and to harmonise the strength in counterattacking the inimical forces of the exploiter class. Similarly, the polarisation of the society into discriminatory classes is also a vessel to reach the socialist realm of the classless non-discriminatory society. Once you reach the destination, you do not need to carry the vessel on your shoulders at all.  The function of the armed struggles by the suppressed class should also be comprehended in the same manner. The appreciation of this subtle difference is paramount in the understanding of the leftist movements. Not only this particular ex-leftist but also such erudite scholars such as Sunil Ariyaratne’s intellectual  capacity had failed to appreciate the subtle differences in the leftist concepts depending on the different social classes. Thus, Sunil had once misquoted and misinterpreted comrade Gamlath as if he had said LTTE was dainty and delighted. This particular ex-leftist needs to have a cognition of the leftist doctrines meticulously before shooting at them with his tongue in cheek texts. 

Dheerananda Gunaherath,



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