Though Sri Lanka is a land of many cultures and traditions the dominant ideology of the country is still largely hegemonic and assimilationist. Cultural traditions and social practices maintain not only distinct boundaries but also perpetuate a system of power relations that are averse to healthy relations between peoples based on equality and respect for rights. This situation is reinforced not only by attitudes and beliefs that guide the mind-set of the masses but also by the intellectual traditions that dominate the country’s establishment and the intelligentsia. Countering the above require active and coordinated dialogue promoting diversity, social justice and mutual respect. Education and research has an important role to play as a catalyst of change in this context.