Title

Negotiating Conceptions of 'Sacred Space': A Case Study of Religious Buildings in Singapore

Publication Type

Journal Article

Publication Date

1-1993

Abstract

In this paper, I approach the study of religious place from a re-theorized cultural geographical stance. Using multi-religious Singapore as a case study, I examine the tensions which arise over the meanings and values associated with religious buildings because of the conflict between state hegemony on the one hand and the oppositional meanings and values of religious groups and individuals on the other. I also examine the ways in which individuals negotiate their conceptions of sacred space in order to cope with changes imposed on their religious places by the state. Primarily, my argument is that conflict is avoided because individuals have found ways of adapting and 'negotiating' the meanings they invest in religious buildings. However, there are instances of resistance and I discuss those circumstances where, instead of adaptation, people resist in both material and symbolic ways.

Keywords

Singapore, state, religion, sacred space, cultural politics, resistance, adaptation

Discipline

Asian Studies | Human Geography | Religion | Urban Studies

Research Areas

Humanities

Publication

Transactions of the Institute of British Geographers

Volume

18

Issue

3

First Page

342

Last Page

358

ISSN

0020-2754

Identifier

10.2307/622464

Publisher

Wiley

Additional URL

http://dx.doi.org/10.2307/622464