Within the context of globalisation that confronts the world today, I aim in this paper to illustrate one particular state's attempts at constructing a 'nation' amidst efforts to encourage its citizens to globalise, actions which are ostensibly, or at least, potentially, contradictory; and to analyse how these citizens who became transmigrants construct and negotiate their sense of 'nation' and national identity. Specifically, my empirical questions centre on Singaporean transmigrants working in China. I ask the following questions. What happens to the sense of national identity among Singaporeans and their relationship with the 'nation' when confronted with transnational conditions? What are the forces that impinge on the on-going construction of community and (re)construction of national identity amongst Singaporeans? What are the implications for a young state in its attempts at nation-building? This paper examines how the Singapore state continually attempts to establish the boundaries of the nation-state through hegemonic, policy and strategic actions. From the perspective of individuals, transnational location enhances their sense of national identity rather than its demise, leading to assertions of 'Singaporeaness' and rootedness. I present empirical evidence that physical presence in a territory is not a necessary condition for a feeling of nationhood, and examine how Singaporeans maintain this sense of national identity through their everyday actions.
Singapore, transmigration, national identity, globalisation, transnationalism
Asian Studies | Human Geography | Urban Studies
Kong, Lily.(1999). Globalisation and Singaporean Transmigration: Re-imagining and Negotiating National Identity. Political Geography, 18(5), 563-589.
Available at: http://ink.library.smu.edu.sg/soss_research/1714
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