Taking ideas and frameworks from philosophy, psychology, political science, cultural studies and anthropology, this book tells the larger `truth' about the Singapore state. This book argues that this strong hegemonic state achieves effective rule not just from repressive policies but also through a combination of efficient government, good standard of living, tough official measures and popular compliance.
Souchou Yao looks at the reasons behind the hegemonic ruling, examining key events such as the caning of American teenager Michael Fay, the judicial ruling on fellatio and unnatural sex, and Singapore's `war on terror' to show the ways in which the State manages these events to ensure the continuance of its power and ideological ethos.
Lively, and well-written, this book discusses key subject areas such as:
leftist radicalism and communist insurgency
nation-building as trauma
Western `yellow culture' and Asian Values
judicial caning and the meaning of pain
the law and oral sex
food and the art of lying
cinema as catharsis
Singapore after September 11.
Souchou Yao is Senior Lecturer in Anthropology at the University of Sydney. He has published widely in international journals and is the author of Confucian Capitalism: discourse, practice and the myth of Chinese enterprise.
Preface 1. The Magic of the Singapore State 2. Trauma and the 'Culture of Excess' 3. Yellow Culture, White Peril 4. Pain, Words, Violence: The Caning of Michael Fay 5. Oral Sex, Natural Sex and National Enjoyment 6. 'Talking Cock': Food and the Art of Lying 7. I Not Stupid: Localism, Bad Translation, Catharsis 8. The Nation after History 9. Epilogue: Useless Pragmatism