Constructions of Nation: The Politics of Landscape in Singapore

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Hardback
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This book shows how power relations that define and challenge the concept of nation are played out in and through landscapes. Has the era of globalization neutralized the institution of nation? This thought-provoking book focuses on attempts to build nation through landscape. Specifically, it explores strategies employed by Singapore, a multiracial society, to create a Singapore nation with an emphasis on the role of landscapes. As such, the authors cast a keen eye on religious buildings, public housing, heritage landscapes, and street name changes as tangible methods of nation-building in a postcolonial society. The authors point out that notions of identity and nation are social constructs rooted in history. They then illustrate how nation and national identity are concepts that are negotiated and disputed by varied social, economic, and political groups - some of which may actively resist powerful state-centrist attitudes. Throughout this work, the role of the landscape prevails both as a way to naturalize state ideologies and as a means of providing possibilities for reinterpretation in everyday life. Insightful and informative, this is a crucial reference for geographers as well as scholars of international political economy, postcolonial and cultural studies, and Asian history.