SRN Virtual Event on 26 Nov: Humanities and Social Sciences Research on Singapore

The Singapore Research Nexus (SRN) at the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences Research Division, NUS invites you to a Virtual Event featuring recent research in the humanities and social sciences on Singapore.

Academics from NUS will present their studies on the themes of 1) Cultural Policy and Heritage, 2) Citizenship, Community, and the Public Sphere, and 3) Pedagogy, Education, and Development.

Please register early through the link below. After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing instructions about joining the webinar. You are free to join and leave the webinar at a time of your convenience.

Please note that the webinar may be recorded by the Singapore Research Nexus. For enquiries, please contact us at nexus@nus.edu.sg.

Date: Thursday, 26 November 2020

Time: 10 AM to 4:50 PM (SGT)

Registration at Zoom: https://nus-sg.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_IlxCcG5eR4CbHbMkDST7fw

Full Programme available here: https://drive.google.com/file/d/187NzhwQJyImvHVxJwgRVADETJVVcFtvu/view?usp=sharing

Schedule

26 NOVEMBER 2020 (Thursday)
10:00 – 10:10 REGISTRATION
10:10 – 10:15 WELCOME REMARKS
Lionel Wee | Professor and Vice Dean of Research, NUS FASS
10:15 – 12:20 PANEL 1 – CULTURAL POLICY AND HERITAGE
10:15 – 10:20 Introduction of Researchers

Priya Jaradi | Lecturer, NUS History

10:20 – 10:40 White Walls Don’t Say Much: Creative Placemaking in Singapore

T.C. Chang | Associate Professor, NUS Geography

10:40 – 11:00 Singapore Chronicles: Theatre

Robin Loon | Associate Professor, NUS English Language and Literature

11:00 – 11:20 Heritagescaping the Southern Islands of Singapore “from below”

Hamzah Bin Muzaini | Assistant Professor, NUS Southeast Asian Studies

11:20 – 11:40 Community Arts and Culture Initiatives in Singapore: Spatial Opportunities and Impacts

Zdravko Trivic | Assistant Professor, NUS Architecture

11:40 – 12:20 Q & A
12:20 – 13:20 LUNCH BREAK
13:20 – 14:55 PANEL 2 – PEDAGOGY, EDUCATION, AND DEVELOPMENT
13:20 – 13:25 Introduction of Researchers

Lee Li Neng | Lecturer, NUS Psychology

13:25 – 13:45 Getting Ahead in Singapore: How Neighborhoods, Gender, and Ethnicity Affect Enrollment into Elite Schools

Vincent Chua | Associate Professor, NUS Sociology

13:45 – 14:05 The Promise and Pitfalls of Gradeless Learning: Responses to an Alternative Approach to Grading

Chris McMorran | Associate Professor, NUS Japanese Studies

14:05 – 14:25 Research from the Generative Space of the Classroom: Balancing Time and Impact

Kamalini Ramdas | Senior Lecturer, NUS Geography

14:25 – 14:55 Q & A
14:55 – 15:10 TEA BREAK
15:10 – 16:45 Panel 3 – CITIZENSHIP, COMMUNITY, AND THE PUBLIC SPHERE
15:10 – 15:15 Introduction of Researchers

Elvin Ong | Senior Tutor, NUS Political Science

15:15 – 15:35 Perceived Electoral Fairness and Media Use: Evidences from two General Elections

Weiyu Zhang | Associate Professor, NUS Communications and New Media

15:35 – 15:55 The Burdens of Ethnicity: Chinese Communities in Singapore and Their Relations with the PRC

Chong Ja Ian | Associate Professor, NUS Political Science

15:55 – 16:15 Citizenship and multilingual (homo)nationalism in Singapore’s Pink Dot discourse

Michelle M. Lazar | Associate Professor, NUS English Language and Literature

16:15 – 16:45 Q & A
16:45 – 16:50 CLOSING REMARKS
Elaine Lynn-Ee Ho | Associate Professor and Assistant Dean of Research, NUS FASS

 

About the Participants

Associate Professor T. C. Chang is a tourism geographer by training, and has research interests in urban, social-cultural and tourism geographies. His research interests include Southeast Asian tourism, vernacular architecture and heritage, arts, culture, and creativity in Asian cities. A/P Chang was Assistant Dean (Alumni and External Relations, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, NUS) in 2008-2010 and Vice Dean (External Relations and Student Life, June 2010-December 2015). He was awarded the NUS Outstanding Educator Award 2006 and the Annual Teaching Excellence Award 2008.
robin loon Robin Loon is Associate Professor at the NUS Department of English Language and Literature. His current research/teaching interests include popular culture and performance, Singapore Theatre (with special focus on Singapore English Language Theatre), media, and performance.  An active participant in the Singapore English Language Theatre scene since 1991, he has also written for the local stage. His work in theatre now mainly involves dramaturgy and play-writing.

A/P Loon conceptualized and ran Singapore’s first Dramaturg Apprentice Programme at Centre 42 in 2015 and co-organized the inaugural Asian Dramaturgs’ Network Symposium in 2016, founded by Dr Lim How Ngean. In 2014, together with Casey Lim, Chiu Chien Seen, and Michele Lim, A/P Loon set up Centre 42, a up-stream content-creation centre for Singapore theatre in partnership with the National Arts Council.

Assistant Professor Hamzah bin Muzaini is a cultural geographer at the Department of Southeast Asian Studies, NUS. His primary work explores the politics of remembering and forgetting, particularly as this intersects with issues of war, heritage, landscape, and postcoloniality. While his primary work has been centred on how the heritage of the Second World War has commemorated in Singapore and Malaysia, he is also broadening this into understanding the phenomenon of cultural theme parks in East Malaysia, migrant heritage making ‘from below’ among the Moluccans in the Netherlands, and the practices and politics of heritagizing the Southern Islands in Singapore (with emphasis on St John’s, Lazarus, and Seringat Islands). He has published in internationally refereed journals and is co-author/editor of Contested Memoryscapes: the Politics of Second World War Commemoration in Singapore (2016, Routledge, with Brenda Yeoh) and After Heritage: Critical Issues of Heritage from Below (2018, Edward Elgar, with Claudio Minca).
Zdravko Trivic is Assistant Professor at the NUS Department of Architecture, School of Design and Environment (SDE). He works closely with CSAC (Centre for Sustainable Asian Cities), CARE (Centre for Ageing Research in the Environment) and CFA (Centre For the Arts), NUS. His research interests include: multi-sensorial urbanism, health-supportive and ageing-friendly design, urban space in high-density contexts, creative placemaking and community participation. Dr Trivic is the author of Community Arts and Culture Initiatives in Singapore: Understanding the Nodal Approach (NY, London; New York: Routledge, 2020) and the co-author of Re-framing Urban Space: Urban Design for Emerging Hybrid and High-density Conditions (with Cho and Heng; New York: Routledge, 2016), among other publications. He is the recipient of two outstanding paper awards at the UIA 2017 Seoul World Architects Congress.
jaradi, priya Priya Jaradi is senior lecturer at the Department of History. She is Convenor for Art History, a collaboration between National University of Singapore (NUS) and the National Gallery Singapore. Former Curator at the Asian Civilisations Museum, she combines her curatorial and scholarly interests in teaching and research. Her past publications with Oxford University Press and Marg reveal her interests in art collecting and princely modernities in South Asia. Her current research for the NUS Museum examines India-Singapore museum exchange within the context of Cold War diplomacy, the Non-Aligned Movement, and decolonization. She is a recipient of the Getty Foundation Grant for 2020 and 2021. In keeping with the multi-disciplinary ethos of her past projects, Dr Jaradi hopes to grow the Faculty’s Art History Minor and inspire students to emerge as practitioners, curators, and scholars.
chua vincent Vincent Chua is Associate Professor at the NUS Department of Sociology.  He received his PhD in Sociology from the University of Toronto in November 2010. His main research area is social networks with an emphasis on social capital – primarily how institutional factors such as labour markets and education affect the job search and networking practices of people. His other research area is the sociology of education.
Chris McMorran is Associate Professor at the NUS Department of Japanese Studies. A cultural geographer of contemporary Japan, his research analyzes how identity and meaning are built, practiced, experienced, and read in cultural landscapes. He has studied these processes through the lenses of tourism and labor, which has led to publications in Mobilities, Landscape Journal, Area, Tourism Geographies, and in a 2018 volume titled Rethinking Japanese Feminisms. This work will appear in the forthcoming book, Last Resort: Labor, Tourism, and Identity in Japan (University of Hawai’i Press).

A/P McMorran is also interested in the geographies of teaching and learning. Along these lines, in 2018 he was awarded a LIFT Grant ($70K) to research podcasting as a teaching and learning tool and to produce the “Home on the Dot” podcast, which takes inspiration from student research projects to analyze the multifaceted meanings of home in Singapore. In 2020, Season 3, which is devoted to stories of how Covid-19 has impacted home, began airing.

Kamalini Ramdas is a Senior Lecturer at the Department of Geography. She teaches modules in social and cultural geography. Dr Ramdas is particularly interested in the spatialities of gender, sexuality, and ‘race’ and the application of social theory in geography. Her specific areas of interest include feminist care ethics, critical geographies of familyhood, and community and queer politics.
Dr Lee Li Neng is a Lecturer at the NUS Department of Psychology. He is interested in looking at how education shapes perceptions on learning and developing the youth holistically, especially in the areas of critical thinking, curiosity, and creativity. Concurrently, he is also interested in innovations and advances in education, and how technology can be utilised to provide a more personalised form of education for individuals and support the development of good teaching.
zhang weiyu Weiyu Zhang is Associate Professor at the Department of Communications and New Media, National University of Singapore. She holds a Ph.D. in Communication from Annenberg School for Communication, University of Pennsylvania. Her research focuses on civic engagement and ICTs, with an emphasis on Asia. She is the author of the book The Internet and New Social Formation in China: Fandom Publics in the Making (Routledge, 2016). Her published articles have appeared in Journal of Communication, Communication Theory, Communication Research, Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication, Information, Communication, & Society, New Media & Society, Computers & Education, Public Understanding of Science, the ACM CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems, and many other journals. She recently completed a project that develops and examines an online platform for citizen deliberation. #CivicTech #OnlineDeliberation #FanActivism
ja ian chong Chong Ja Ian is Associate Professor at the NUS Department of Political Science. The focus of his teaching and research is on international relations, especially IR theory, security, Chinese foreign policy, and international relations in the Asia-Pacific. Of particular interest to him are issues that stand at the nexus of international and domestic politics, such as influences on nationalism and the consequences of major power competition on the domestic politics of third countries. A/P Chong is author of External Intervention and the Politics of State Formation — China, Indonesia, Thailand, 1893-1952 (Cambridge, 2012), which received the 2013 Best Book Award from the International Security Studies Section of the International Studies Association. He was a Harvard-Yenching Visiting Scholar in 2019-2020.
https://profile.nus.edu.sg/fass/ellmml/IMG_1416.JPGedited.jpg Michelle M. Lazar is Associate Professor and Head of the NUS Department of English Language and Literature. A linguist, she specialises in critical discourse studies, gender and sexuality, media and politics, and multimodal discourse analysis. Michelle is founding editor of the Routledge Critical Studies in Discourse monograph series, is an advisory board member of the Oxford Language, Gender, and Sexuality book series, and is on the editorial boards of Critical Discourse Studies, Discourse & Society, Social Semiotics, and Gender & Language.
Dr Elvin Ong is Senior Tutor in the Department of Political Science at the National University of Singapore. He was previously a Postdoctoral Fellow in the Institute of Asian Research (IAR) at the University of British Columbia. His primary research interests are in the politics and policies of authoritarian regimes, with specific focus on the formation of opposition coalitions contesting against a dominant incumbent. His book manuscript, Opposing Power: Building Opposition Alliances in Electoral Autocracies, is under contract with the University of Michigan Press, Weiser Center for Emerging Democracies Series.
Lionel Wee is Professor at the Department of English Language and Literature, National University of Singapore and Vice Dean of Research at the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences. A linguist, he is interested in language policy (especially in Southeast Asia), the grammar of Singapore English, metaphorical discourse, and general issues in sociolinguistics and pragmatics. He has published in the Journal of Pragmatics, Discourse Studies, Language in Society, Journal of Linguistics, Applied Linguistics, and Journal of Multilingual and Multicultural Development, among others.
ho elaine lynn-ee Elaine Lynn-Ee Ho is Associate Professor at the Department of Geography and Senior Research Fellow at the Asia Research Institute (ARI), National University of Singapore. She is also Assistant Dean (Research Division) at the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences. Her research addresses how citizenship is changing as a result of multi-directional migration flows in the Asia-Pacific. She is author of Citizens in Motion: Emigration, Immigration and Re-migration Across China’s Borders (2019, Stanford University Press). Her current research focuses on two domains: first, transnational ageing and care in the Asia-Pacific; and second, im/mobilities and diaspora aid at the China-Myanmar border. She is Editor of Social and Cultural Geography, and serves on several journal editorial boards.

 

HKUST-NUS: Navigating a World of Disruption

THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC HAS IRREVOCABLY changed the world, empowering us to take new approaches and employ new methods to do just about everything—from administering public policy and trade relations to managing economic and social activities.

The National University of Singapore’s Associate Professor Itty Abraham (Department of Southeast Asian Studies), Sooyeon Kim(Department of Political Science) and Prof David Taylor (Department of Geography) will be discussing this topic along with counterparts at Hong Kong University of Science and Technology in the concluding episode of the HKUST Global Webinar Series.

During this session, “Navigating a World of Disruption”, the panel will be sharing their research and perspectives on the deep and varied effects of COVID-19 on food security, climate change, air quality, global trade, trends in international migration, remittances and scholarship.

Do not miss this! Register here https://bit.ly/HKUST_NUS_Webinar_Reg.

Launch of Imperial Creatures: Humans and Other Animals in Colonial Singapore, 1819–1942 by Tim Barnard

Imperial Creatures: Humans and Other Animals in Colonial Singapore, 1819–1942


Date & Time:
Wednesday, 12 February 2020, from 6:00 to 8:30 pm
Venue: The Pod, NLB
Organizers: Singapore Research Nexus
RSVP at https://www.eventbrite.sg/e/imperial-creatures-humans-and-other-animals-in-colonial-singapore-181919-registration-77088051437


Programme

6:00 pm Registration/Refreshments/Book Sale
6:30 pm Welcome Remarks by Chair, Associate Professor Maitrii Aung-Thwin (NUS History/Asia Research Institute)
6:35 pm Presentation by Associate Professor Timothy P. Barnard (NUS History)
6:55 pm Presentation by Assistant Professor Anthony Medrano (Yale-NUS)
7:15 pm Presentation by Assistant Professor Darinee Algirisamy (NUS South Asian Studies)
7:35 pm Q and A/Discussion, Moderated by Chair
8:05 pm Book Sale with Autograph Signing


About the Book

Imperial Creatures: Humans and Other Animals in Colonial Singapore, 1819-1942
Timothy P. Barnard
NUS Press

The environmental turn in the humanities and social sciences has meant a new focus on the imperial creatureshistory of animals. This is one of the first books to look across species at animals in a colonial, urban society. If imperialism is a series of power relationships, it involves not only the subjugation of human communities but also animals. What was the relationship between these two processes in colonial Singapore? How did various interactions with animals enable changes in interactions between people, and the expression of power in human terms?
The imposition of imperial power relationships was a process that was often complex and messy, and it led to the creation of new communities throughout the world, including the colonial port city of Singapore. Through a multidisciplinary consideration of fauna, this book weaves together a series of tales to document how animals were cherished, slaughtered, monitored and employed in a colonial society, to provide insight into how imperial rule was imposed on an island in Southeast Asia. Fauna and their histories of interacting with humans, thus, become useful tools for understanding our past, revealing the effects of establishing a colony on the biodiversity of a region, and the institutions that quickly transformed it. All animals, including humans, have been creatures of imperialism in Singapore. Their stories teach us lessons about the structures that upheld such a society and how it developed over time.

Author Bio
Timothy P. Barnard
is an associate professor in the Department of History at the National University of Singapore, where he specializes in the environmental and cultural history of island Southeast Asia.

Speaker Bios
Anthony Medrano is a historian of the Asian marine environment who studies the interplay between people and fish, science and society, and technology and nature.

Darinee Algirisamy’s work engages with the history of poverty and social reform in colonial India, with a focus on South India, between the late nineteenth and mid-twentieth centuries. The transnational circulation of Indian reform movements in Southeast Asia and the history of the Tamil diaspora are related areas of interest.

Chair Bio
Maitrii Aung-Thwin received his PhD from the University of Michigan (2001) where he studied Burmese and Southeast Asian history. He has lived and conducted research in Southeast Asia for nearly two decades.

 

FASS90 GALA DINNER | Looking Back, Pressing Forward

NUS FASS marked its 90th anniversary, the Dean delivered a strong performance on stage, and Guest of Honour Mrs Josephine Teo, Minister for Manpower, called for further government-academia collaboration on public policy.

From its beginnings in 1929 as part of Raffles College offering three-year diplomas in English, Economics, History and Geography, to its position today as a global top 20 provider of higher education in the Arts & Humanities and Social Sciences & Management, the NUS Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (FASS) has come a long way.

Mrs Josephine Teo, Minister of Manpower and Second Minister for Home Affairs, talked about the ways academia can help drive public policy and called for their greater collaboration with the government.Photo Credit: Ministry of Manpower

The Dean of FASS, Professor Robbie Goh, referenced this journey during his opening address at FASS 90th Anniversary Gala Dinner on Friday (15 November 2019) evening. “FASS began life…with the four founding majors of English, History and Geography. Its inaugural intake was 43 students,” said Professor Goh. “Fast forward 90 years…FASS takes in about 1,600 undergraduate students each, has 16 departments offering 20 majors, [and so far can count] among its alumni – a President, a Prime Minister, several Ministers and ambassadors, and other top civil servants of Singapore, along with notable CEOs, entrepreneurs, well-known actors, musicians and others who have contributed much to the world.”

Professor Goh performed for all supporters of FASS’s fundraising efforts.

Professor Goh proceeded to share details of initiatives and programmes already underway at NUS FASS with close to 300 alumni, staff, students and other supporters who packed the Empress Ballroom at Carlton Hotel in downtown Singapore to celebrate the Faculty’s 90th anniversary. These included the launch of: a new major under the Politics, Philosophy and Economics (PPE) programme; joint and double degree programmes with overseas partners (the latest being the University of California, Berkeley); the FASS Social Incubator Programme, which sees to the provision of seed money to students working on innovative solutions to social work issues; and the “Industry Tracks” programme, which seeks to enhance the employability of FASS graduates by giving them the training, guidance and experience they need to succeed in the key industry segments most likely to hire them.

Assembled to cut FASS’s 90th Birthday cake (from left): Professor Goh; Professor Ho; Emeritus Professor Edwin Thumboo; Mr Archie Ong; Mrs Tan Suan Imm; Mr Soh Yi Da; Ms Zoey Lim, President, NUS Students’ Arts and Social Sciences Club.

Guest of Honour Mrs Josephine Teo, Minister of Manpower and Second Minister for Home Affairs, a FASS alumnus herself, shared the Government’s current approaches to helping ensure Singapore’s ageing population have sufficient funds to retire comfortably. She cited some of the major contributions the academic community has made to Central Provident Fund (CPF) policy to date, and called for further Government-academia collaboration in specific areas of research and public communications. Among her suggestions are programmes that seek to answer questions such as: How can it be ensured that the Basic Retirement Sum (BRS) of each CPF member is sufficient to cover basic expenses in the future?; How can the Government increase understanding of and promote take-up of schemes meant to enable retirees to supplement their incomes by making use of their HDB apartments?; How can older workers be incentivised to start their payouts later, so they will have higher payouts when they eventually retire?

Professor Ho Teck Hua, Senior Deputy President and Provost, NUS, sealed the FASS Leapfrog Time Capsule.

“We can make our system better through constantly looking over the horizon and planning ahead. In that sense, the CPF must remain a ‘live system’, always evolving and ever-responsive to emerging needs,” Mrs Teo said. “We hope that the academic and social science research community can join us to make it better.”Immediately following a dazzling Malay dance performance by dance group NUS Ilsa Tari, came students Wesley Wang (Year 2 Linguistics Major) and Nediva Singam (Year 4 Geography Major) sharing their experiences and lessons learnt during their respective turns in overseas exchange study programmes. They spoke in support of the launch of the new FASS Student Advancement Fund that extends further financial support for needy students.

NUS Ilsa Tari in perfect form

The proceeds of the Gala Dinner went directly to this fund, and the generosity of all donors so moved Professor Goh that he dedicated his rendition of James Taylor’s classic You’ve Got a Friend and the timeless hymn by John Newton, Amazing Grace to them. The audience returned his gesture not just with heartfelt applause.

Professor Goh, Professor Ho Teck Hua, Senior Deputy President and Provost, NUS, Singapore’s legendary poet Emeritus Professor Edwin Thumboo, illustrious Singapore educator and alumnus Mrs Tan Suan Imm, and, distinguished alumni Archie Ong and Soh Yi Da, who played key roles on the FASS 90 Gala Dinner Committee, came together to cut FASS’s 90th birthday cake.

Vernon Cornelius (of the Quests from 1960s Singapore) and his band in action

The climax of the event was the sealing of the FASS Leapfrog Time Capsule in commemoration of FASS’s 90th Anniversary. Professors Goh and Ho placed items representing the Deanery, every department, alumni, student body, along with the day’s edition of The Straits Times into the time capsule, which they set to reopen in 2079 on the occasion of FASS’s 150th anniversary. Professor Ho then sealed it by pressing a virtual button on an iPad, setting off confetti and cheers from everyone.

NUS Theatre Studies Joint Book Launch

Title: NUS Theatre Studies Joint Book Launch featuring Bodies and Transformance in Taiwanese Contemporary Theater by Dr Peilin Liang, Theatre-Fiction in Britain from Henry James to Doris Lessing: Writing in the Wings by Dr Graham Wolfe, and Enacting Lecoq: Movement in Theatre, Cognition, and Life by Dr Maiya Murphy

Date: Wednesday, 9 October 2019

Time: 6:30-9:05pm

Venue: The Pod, NLB

Organizers: FASS Research Division

RSVP at Eventbrite.

Description

Three authors will share their new books dealing with the study of theatre:

  1. Bodies and Transformance in Taiwanese Contemporary Theater (Routledge, 2019) by Dr Peilin Liang, Assistant Professor, NUS English Language & Literature

In Bodies and Transformance in Taiwanese Contemporary Theater, Peilin Liang develops a theory of bodily transformation. Proposing the concept of transformance, a conscious and rigorous process of self-cultivation toward a reconceptualized body, Liang shows how theater practitioners of minoritized cultures adopt transformance as a strategy to counteract the embodied practices of ideological and economic hegemony. This book observes key Taiwanese contemporary theater practitioners at work in forging five reconceptualized bodies: the energized, the rhythmic, the ritualized, the joyous, and the (re)productive. By focusing on the development of transformance between the years of 2000–2008, a tumultuous political watershed in Taiwan’s history, the author succeeds in bridging postcolonialism and interculturalism in her conceptual framework. Ideal for scholars of Asian and Postcolonial Theater, Bodies and Transformance in Taiwanese Contemporary Theater shows how transformance, rather than performance, calibrates with far greater precision and acuity the state of the body and the culture that it seeks to create.

2. Theatre-Fiction in Britain from Henry James to Doris Lessing: Writing in the Wings (Routledge, 2019) by Dr Graham Wolfe, Associate Professor, NUS English Language & Literature

Theatre-Fiction in Britain from Henry James to Doris LessingThis volume posits and explores an intermedial genre called theatre-fiction, understood in its broadest sense as referring to novels and stories that engage in concrete and sustained ways with theatre. Though theatre has made star appearances in dozens of literary fictions, including many by modern history’s most influential authors, no full-length study has dedicated itself specifically to theatre-fiction―in fact there has not even been a recognized name for the phenomenon. Focusing on Britain, where most of the world’s theatre-novels have been produced, and commencing in the late-nineteenth century, when theatre increasingly took on major roles in novels, Theatre-Fiction in Britain argues for the benefits of considering these works in relation to each other, to a history of development, and to the theatre of their time. New modes of intermedial analysis are modelled through close studies of Henry James, Somerset Maugham, Virginia Woolf, J. B. Priestley, Ngaio Marsh, Angela Carter, and Doris Lessing, all of whom were deeply involved in the theatre-world as playwrights, directors, reviewers, and theorists. Drawing as much on theatre scholarship as on literary theory, Theatre-Fiction in Britain presents theatre-fiction as one of the past century’s most vital means of exploring, reconsidering, and bringing forth theatre’s potentials.

3. Enacting Lecoq: Movement in Theatre, Cognition, and Life (Palgrave Macmillan, 2019) by Dr Maiya Murphy, Assistant Professor, NUS English Language & Literature

This book examines the theatrical movement-based pedagogy of Jacques Lecoq (1921-1999)enacting lecoq through the lens of the cognitive scientific paradigm of enaction. The conversation between these two both uncovers more of the possible cognitive processes at work in Lecoq pedagogy and proposes how Lecoq’s own practical and philosophical approach could have something to offer the development of the enactive paradigm. Understanding Lecoq pedagogy through enaction can shed new light on the ways that movement, key to Lecoq’s own articulation of his pedagogy, might cognitively constitute the development of Lecoq’s ultimate creative figure – the actor-creator. Through an enactive lens, the actor-creator can be understood as not only a creative figure, but also the manifestation of a fundamentally new mode of cognitive selfhood. This book engages with Lecoq pedagogy’s significant practices and principles including the relationship between the instructor and student, identifications, mime, play, mask work, language, improvisation, and movement analysis.

 

Programme

6:30-7:00pm – Registration/Refreshments/Books available for purchase

7:00-7:05pm – Welcome Remarks by Chair, Dr Walter Lim, Associate Professor, NUS English Language & Literature

7:05-7:25pm – Peilin Liang Presentation on Bodies and Transformance in Taiwanese Contemporary Theater

7:25-7:45pm – Graham Wolfe Presentation on Theatre-Fiction in Britain from Henry James to Doris Lessing: Writing in the Wings

7:45-8:05pm – Maiya Murphy Presentation on Enacting Lecoq: Movement in Theatre, Cognition, and Life

8:05-8:35pm – Q and A/Discussion, Moderated by Chair

8:35-9:05pm – Book Sale with Autograph Signing

 

Author Bios

As a researcher, educator, facilitator and translator of theatre and performance, Peilin peilin liangLiang is immensely interested in storytelling through shapeshifting. She received her MA in English from the University of Auckland and her PhD from the Department of Theatre and Dance at the University of Hawaii at Mānoa. Prior to her appointment at the National University of Singapore, she was a postdoctoral fellow with the Asian Studies Department at the University of Texas at Austin. Her research interests include (post)colonialism, minor transnationalism, cultural diversity and dynamics of cross-cultural exchange in relation to body training, performance pedagogy, and theatre.

 

graham wolfeGraham Wolfe is an Associate Professor in the Theatre Studies division of the English Language & Literature Department at NUS. He came to Singapore in 2012, having lived for most of his life in Canada. He has also taught at the University of Toronto, where he completed his Masters and PhD in Drama. He also holds a BA (Honours) and B.Ed from Queen’s University, Canada. At NUS, he teaches “Major Playwrights of the 20th Century”, “Theatre and Postmodernism”, and “The Theatre Experience”.

 

maiya murphy Maiya Murphy is a researcher, teacher, deviser, and performer. She began her career as an actor and dancer focused on movement-based training, creation, and performance. Her practical background informs her research on relationships between practice, theory, movement, and the cognitive sciences. She received her BA in Theater Studies from Yale University, trained in Lecoq-based pedagogy at the London International School of Performing Arts (LISPA), and received her Ph.D. in Theatre and Drama from the University of California, San Diego. She also makes theatre with her collective, Autopoetics.

 

 

A Land Imagined – Friday, 30 August 2019

A Land Imagined《幻土》 exposes a side of Singapore that is not commonly known or understood even to Singaporeans, grappling with issues of ethics and identity, and gives audiences a glimpse into the lives of migrant workers, the difficulties they face as well as their hopes and dreams. Touching on the notion of the ‘other’, the film highlights themes of heritage and society, showing migrant workers who are essential to the continual progress of our nation but yet are excluded from our society.

This noir film has won numerous awards, including being the first Singaporean film to win the Golden Leopard prize at the 71st Locarno Film Festival (Switzerland) 2018, as well as the Best Film in the Asian Feature Film Competition at the 29th Singapore International Film Festival – SGIFF 2018.

Free admission with registration:
https://tinyurl.com/emccalandimagined

 

Kent Ridge Alumni Family Day on 17 August 2019

CALLING ALL STUDENTS, STAFF AND ALUMNI!

Kent Ridge Alumni Family Day (KRAFD) on Saturday, 17 August!

Themed Fiesta On the Green, NUS’ biggest homecoming will commemorate Singapore’s Bicentennial, while welcoming home alumni, students, faculty, staff and their families back to the Kent Ridge Campus.

Come be dazzled by the star-studded line-up of celebrity alumni performers including Joanna Dong (Arts & Social Sciences ’04) who came in third in Sing! China 2017.  Other exciting activities include a showcase of autonomous and virtual technologies, hands-on stations at Student Life Fair, and networking at the Faculty booths.  The festivities will culminate in the largest outdoor movie screening on campus of the popular animated film, Smallfoot.

Date:        Saturday, 17 August 2019
Time: 5.00pm – 9.30pm
Venue: NUS University Town
Note: Please note that photography and videography will be carried out throughout the event. The NUS Office of Alumni Relations may use some or all of these images in its print publications, digital platforms and/or marketing channels.  

Book Launch – Hard at Work: Life in Singapore 

Title: Book Launch – Hard at Work: Life in Singapore 

Date: Friday, 1 November 2019

Time: 6:00-8:35 pm

Venue: The Pod, NLB

Organizers: Singapore Research Nexus

RSVP at Eventbrite.

Description

Hard at Work: Life in Singaporehard at work cover

Gerard Sasges & Ng Shi Wen (Editors)
NUS Press

For most of us, work is a basic daily fact of life. But that simple fact encompasses an incredibly wide range of experiences. Hard at Work (2019) takes readers into the day-to-day work experiences of more than fifty working people in Singapore who hold jobs that run from the ordinary to the unusual: from ice cream vendors, baristas, police officers and funeral directors to academic ghostwriters, temple flower sellers, and Thai disco girl agents.

Through first-person narratives based on detailed interviews, vividly augmented with color photographs, Hard at Work reminds us of the everyday labor that continually goes on around us, and that every job can reveal something interesting if we just look closely enough. It shows us too the ways inequalities of status and income are felt and internalized in this highly globalized society.

gerard sasges Gerard Sasges is a historian, educator, and chronicler of everyday life. He is an Associate Professor in the Department of Southeast Asian Studies at the National University of Singapore. His work explores the relationship between technology and processes of social, political, economic, and environmental change in Southeast Asia.

 

 

 

 

shi wen ngNg Shi Wen is a photographer, educator, and entrepreneur. She is the founder of Photo Rikiki and has taught at the National University of Singapore and at Singapore’s School of the Arts. Using words and light, she seeks to transcribe stories of people finding their way in a constantly changing city.

 

 

 

 

 

Programme

6:00-6:30 pm – Registration/Refreshments/Books available for purchase

6:30-6:35 pm – Welcome Remarks by Chair, Associate Professor Teo You Yenn, Provost’s Chair & Head of Sociology, NTU School of Social Sciences

6:35-7:35 pm – “Work/Life in Singapore” with Gerard Sasges, Ng Shi Wen, Choo Ruizhi, Nathene Chua, Qistina Ahmad, Samuel Devaraj, and Sutrisno Foo

7:35-8:05 pm – Q and A/Discussion, Moderated by Chair

8:05-8:35 pm – Book Sale with Autograph Signing

US-Sino Relations: Complex and Uncertain – Kausikan

Mr Bilahari Kausikan spoke at length about how US-China relations today affect the current global and regional political order on 20 March 2019 at his fourth FASS90 Political Science Lecture on the Practice of Foreign Affairs.

He was keen to emphasise that despite some similarities, Sino-American relations today are fundamentally different from those between the US and the Soviet Union during the Cold War. “The post-Cold War (world) is complex, not binary,” he stated.

Mr. Kausikan (right) responding to questions with Assoc Prof Bilveer Singh (left) from the Department of Political Science

“US-China Relations are Inextricably Entangled in a Way US-Soviet Relations Never Were”

Following the dissolution of the Soviet Union in 1991, the Cold War-era of international political structure that had persisted for more than four decades abruptly came to an end. “Despite its many dangers, the Cold War international order was clear and simple; essentially binary in structure,” said Mr Kausikan.

“You were either on one side or the other. Even if you tried to be or pretended to be non-aligned, you essentially defined your interests in relation to this binary structure. This entrenched a mode of thought: a binary view of the world that is still a powerful albeit usually unconscious, but certainly inappropriate influence on how we understand the trope of China’s rise.”

The biggest difference in today’s US-China relations compared to US-Soviet relations during the Cold War was how interlinked America was with each at the time. The Soviet Union “largely contained itself by pursuing autarky,” Kausikan said. “The US and the Soviet Union interacted only tangentially; their relationship was structured primarily by the need to avoid mutual destruction.”

This is unlike China today, which is inseparably inter-connected with the American economy and that of the world. “Unlike the Soviet Union, China is an irreplaceable node in the global economy, as vital as the American economy,” he stated. “US-China relations are simultaneously inter-dependent in a way that is historically unique between major powers, and simultaneously infused with a deep strategic distrust.” Yet despite this distrust, Kausikan was adamant that Sino-American rivalry was not a zero-sum game as some claim. “China’s rise is not necessarily America’s decline, except in relative terms,” he said, dismissing it as another relic of an outdated Cold War-era mentality.

Bilahari Kausikan discussing US-Sino relations.

America: “Spreading the Burden of Leadership”

Mr Kausikan also noted that despite their vast differences, “both Obama and Trump are iterations of the post-Cold War metamorphosis of American values.” Both have attempted to spread the burden of leadership, particularly defence costs, onto America’s allies; Obama merely did so in a more tactful manner than his successor.

In fact, Kausikan was of the opinion President Trump and his tough stance toward China was not a passing phase but a permanent shift in American policy. “Trump is not an aberration that will pass with the next administration,” he stated. “Key elements of his foreign policy, in particular the tougher approach to China as a strategic competitor enjoy strong bipartisan support across many policy domains.”

“Trump’s successor may speak more prudently and act more predictably, but the probability is that whoever succeeds Trump will represent the same political phenomenon and pursue much the same policies, at least towards China.”

China: Globalisation’s Biggest Winner, Protectionism’s Biggest Loser

This new hostile American stance to both China and globalisation will have serious implications for China, particularly for its ambitious Belt and Road Initiative. “China was the main beneficiary of the American-led post-Cold War globalisation. China may well be the main loser if that order should further fray because the US now embraces a narrower concept of leadership,” Mr Kausikan noted.

“Can the Belt and Road Initiative succeed if the world turns protectionist as a result of the trade war? I don’t think so. More to the point, I don’t think the Chinese think so either.”

And despite its undeniable position as an economic superpower, Kausikan was not optimistic that China could be a substitute for American leadership in the global economy. “An open global order cannot be led on the basis of a still-largely closed and mercantilist Chinese model,” he remarked, especially when “Chinese growth rests on that open international order.” As such, he feels that some sort of temporary truce will be called on the ongoing trade war, although it would likely be “a very bad deal, and both sides will have the incentive to get out of it as soon as possible.”

Engagement Still the Main Tone of US-China Relationships

Nevertheless, Mr Kausikan emphasised that despite the rancour of the trade war, the central theme of US-China bilateral ties was that of engagement and communication. “War is highly improbable, nuclear deterrence impels caution, engagement will not cease and the US and China will still cooperate when their interests coincide,” he stated. Given how closely the two countries are tied to each other and the rest of the world economically, a continued policy of engagement would bode well for all sides.

Watch the lecture here.

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About the Speaker
Bilahari Kausikan is Chairman of the Middle East Institute, NUS. From 2001 to 2013, he was first the second Permanent Secretary and then Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA). He was subsequently Ambassador-at-Large until May 2018, having previously served in various MFA appointments, including as the Deputy Secretary for Southeast Asia, the Permanent Representative to the United Nations in New York and as Ambassador to the Russian Federation.

FASS90 Political Science Lecture Series on the Practice of Foreign Affairs
This five part lecture series is organised by the NUS Political Science Society with support from the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (FASS) and the Department of Political Science. Established in 1929, FASS, one of the earliest and largest faculties is celebrating its 90th anniversary this year. Whilst witnessing numerous changes, we remain steadfast to our vision to strive forward as a premier faculty of excellence in humanities and social sciences that nurtures tomorrow’s engaged, thoughtful and creative global citizens. To mark this occasion, the Faculty is organising a series of events showcasing the strength and breadth of the Faculty’s research as well as kick start future initiatives that would benefit the generations of students who will come through our halls.