The Notion of Place in the Construction of History, Nostalgia and Heritage in Singapore
In this paper, we investigate the links between place and time, and the intersections between the geographical imagination and the historical mind. These issues are explored in the context of Singapore by looking at the links between place and three concepts usually associated with the temporal sense - history, nostalgia and heritage. We argue that the two imaginations can be simultaneously engaged by means of a focus on the concept of place. The making of a place is closely intertwined with individual biographies and collective histories; at the same time, place does not record history in an unproblematic way. We next argue that a sense of nostalgia is a yearning to return to a lost period and place and why memory is often best served by anchoring it in the materiality of place. This is precisely the case in the inscription of heritage into the concrete elements of specific sites as a stare strategy to codify and naturalise its own version of heritage as part of the the everyday, visible world. In concluding, we reflect on the salience of place. While it lends itself to ideological uses by the powerful, a sense of place is also equally significant in the experiences and aspirations of a people.
Asian Studies | Human Geography | Urban Studies
Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography
Yeoh, Brenda S. A., & Kong, Lily.(1996). The Notion of Place in the Construction of History, Nostalgia and Heritage in Singapore. Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography, 17(1), 52-65.
Available at: http://ink.library.smu.edu.sg/soss_research/1721