Contesting Space in Colonial Singapore
Power Relations and the Urban Built Environment
Publication Year: 2013
Published by: NUS Press Pte Ltd
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With the re-issue of this book, the trail of debt has lengthened considerably since the writing of the first acknowledgements. Research is ultimately a humanized activity, dependent first and foremost on human connectivity and ingenuity. I am...
Acknowledgements to the First Edition
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...stimulated and shaped some of the ideas which eventually found their way into the book, as well as for efficiently supervising the 'everyday' aspects of research. I am also grateful to my advisers at the School of Geography, David Harvey and Ceri Peach, and other staff members of the University, including Alisdair Rogers and Peter Carey for advice and direction...
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...1890s, depicted here setting out on a promising if controversial5 Photograph taken by Professor Simpson to show the 'dark central7 Photograph taken by Professor Simpson to show 'the interior of a9 A cartoon entitled 'Sorrowfully dedicated to the thousands whose12 Eu Yang Seng, a company specializing in the import, export, and...
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Note on Currency, Chinese Names and Terms
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UNLESS stated otherwise, the unit of currency used throughout the textis the Straits dollar. Prior to 1906, the value of the Straits dollar fluctu ated between 4 shillings and 6 pence in 1874 and 1 shilling and 8 Yzpence in 1902. A new Straits dollar was introduced in 1903 and therate of exchange fixed at 2 shillings and 4 pence in 1906, remaining at...
Chapter 1: Power Relations and the Built Environment in Colonial Cities
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...three decades, but as David Simon observed in a stock-taking effort,'much of the published evidence is fragmentary and purely empirical,thereby rendering the important socio-scientific tasks of comparison andgeneralization difficult'. 1 Up to the 1960s, conceptualizations of urbandevelopment such as Sjoberg's pre-industriaVindustrial dichotomy2...
Chapter 2: Establishing an Institution of Control over the Urban Built Environment: The Municipal Authority of Singapore, 1819-1930
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I think that the capacity for governing is a characteristic of our race, andit is wonderful to see in a country like the Straits, a handful ofEnglishmen and Europeans, a large and rich Chinese community, tens ofthousands of Chinese of the lower coolie class, Arab and Parsee mer chants, Malays of all ranks, and a sprinkling of all nationalities, living...
Part I: Sanitizing the Private Environment
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AN emerging theme in current research into the health conditions ofcolonial societies has been the concern not so much with disease andmedicine as purely epidemiological or medical phenomena, but withtheir instrumentality: that is, with their role in 'describing a relationshipof power and authority between rulers and the ruled and between colo ...
Chapter 3: Municipal Sanitary Surveillance, Asian Resistance, and the Control of the Urban Environment
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The science of sanitation ... is not hard to understand, and amounts tonothing more than carrying out cleanliness by scientific method.... Itslaws, easily observed as they are, do not admit of neglect. Disregard ofthem swiftly brings down the penalty on the offending parties. Thepublic health should override every other consideration when the preven ...
Chapter 4: Shaping the Built Form of the City: From the Regulation of House Form to Urban Planning
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...operation or even their involvement' (Worboys, 'British Colonial Medicine and Tropical187. Foucault, Discipline and Punish, p. 139; Foucault, 'Power and Strategies', p. 142.Singapore the City of Mean Streets and high land values needs rebuild Much of the work of housing reform may be interpreted as an attempt tochange social behaviour via physical change which was often frustrated...
Chapter 5: Municipal Versus Asian Utilities Systems: Urban Water Supply and Sewage Disposal
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Wealthy cities like Singapore were expected to find their own waterThe perfection of cleanliness would be that all refuse matters shouldfrom the very beginning, pass away inoffensively and continuously.2By the beginning of the twentieth century, the municipal agenda ofbecome increasingly broad and complex. The preceding chapter con ...
Part II: Ordering the Public Environment
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THE earlier chapters (3-5) have largely, though not exclusively,focused on the private, domestic environment as the object of medicaldiscourse and the arena of conflict between the municipal authoritiesand the Asian communities. The cubicle, the latrine, other interioraspects of the Asian house as well as the people who inhabited and...
Chapter 6: The Naming and Signification of Urban Space: Municipa versus Asian Street-names and Place-names
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World maps prepared for use within a given country misrepresent insome degree the place names of countries of other speech. When differ ent alphabets are involved, the misrepresentation is magnified; and whena different system of language is used, ... the distortion puts the culturaland geographic realities completely beyond the grasp of the layman. 1...
Chapter 7: The Control of 'Public' Space: Conflicts over the Definition and Use of the Verandah
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We believe we are representing European public opinion when we urgeupon the authorities, be they municipal or otherwise, not to be turnedaside from the measures they conceive necessary for the health andwelfare of the community ... and to prevent nuisances on our publicstreets. British rule and British ideas must be paramount in Singapore ...
Chapter 8: The Control of 'Sacred' Space: Conflicts over the Chinese Burial Grounds
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The cemetery stood in a place, valueless when it was chosen, which withthe increase of the city's affluence was now worth a great deal of money.It had been suggested that the graves should be moved to another spotand the land sold for building, but the feeling of the community wasagainst it. It gave the taipan a sense of satisfaction to think that their...
Chapter 9: Conclusion: The Politics of Space in Colonial Singapore
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In this account, both people who claim history as their own and thepeople to whom history has been denied emerge participants in the sameTHE specific line of enquiry and the questions posed in the precedingshaping, representing, and using the urban built environment in colo nial Singapore. This is a critical area in which the self-interest of the...
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Page Count: 396
Illustrations: 21 tables, 39 figures, 31 images
Publication Year: 2013