The Making and Meaning of Relationships in Sri Lanka

An Ethnography on University Students in Colombo

  • Mihirini Sirisena

Part of the Culture, Mind, and Society book series (CMAS)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xxiv
  2. Mihirini Sirisena
    Pages 1-53
  3. Mihirini Sirisena
    Pages 55-75
  4. Mihirini Sirisena
    Pages 77-97
  5. Mihirini Sirisena
    Pages 99-119
  6. Mihirini Sirisena
    Pages 167-184
  7. Mihirini Sirisena
    Pages 185-205
  8. Back Matter
    Pages 223-242

About this book


This book proposes that romantic relationships—filtered through various socio-cultural sieves—can lead to the development of affective kin bonds, which underlie our sense of personhood and belonging. Sirisena argues that the process resembles an attempt to make strangers into kin, and that sort of affective relating is a form of self-conscious relationality, in which the inhabitants reflect on their individual and collective needs, as well as their expectations and dreams in the future of their relationships. University students’ romantic relationships, which they gloss as 'serious,' appear to be processual and non-linear, and are considered to be stabilising forces which are pitched against the inherent uncertainty in young people’s lives.


Cross-cultural Psychology International Psychology Interpersonal Relationships Psychological Anthropology Social Anthropology Materiality Attraction Intimacy South Asia Sri Lanka Youth Studies

Authors and affiliations

  • Mihirini Sirisena
    • 1
  1. 1.Durham UniversityDurhamUnited Kingdom

Bibliographic information