Italian version

The migration question in For a son: sociocultural representations of Sri Lankan migration in a minimalist film

Shashini Ruwanthi Gamage

I received an opportunity to watch Suranga Katugampola’s For a son (2016) at a screening in Colombo in February 2017. The film in all its sense, as Katugampola has captioned in its synopsis, ‘a minimalist film, simple and close as possible to the reality’ ( The most intriguing aspect of For a son to me, a migration media scholar, entailed in a four-year PhD project on Sinhalese diasporic women audiences of Sri Lankan soap operas (teledramas) in Melbourne, Australia, is the migration question in the film. While throughout, the film also engages with a powerful psychoanalytic examination of the strained relationship between a mother and an adolescent son, drawing on Freudian psychosexual theories, the migration question in For a son enables us to read this film from a sociocultural vantage.
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Shashini Ruwanthi Gamage is a PhD of La Trobe University, Melbourne, Australia. Her thesis was an ethnography on Sri Lankan women’s television soap opera cultures, focusing on audiences in Colombo and diasporic audiences in Melbourne. Shashini is a television journalist and producer in Sri Lanka. Her media work entailed video programs on reconciliation, gender, culture, and development.