Singathology : Singathology
A nation is here being laid open for your scrutiny through fifty works by writers
who have all been conferred one of Singapore’s two highest accolades:
the Cultural Medallion and the Young Artist Award. These writers have
been invited to help commemorate the living Singapore in their own ways,
in any medium of their choice, and this anthology is the outcome.
Together, the pieces expose not so much a sense of who we Singaporeans
are as what we give to ourselves, through our writers, as being about us.
—Dr Gwee Li Sui, in the “Introduction” to Volume I
The first of its kind, this two-volume anthology comprises fifty specially-commissioned new works from past recipients of the prestigious Cultural Medallion or Young Artist Award.
Commemorating the nation’s Golden Jubilee, this book celebrates the rich polyphony of Singapore’s literary creative voices. Traversing genres and generations, readers will encounter poetry, prose, comics and plays. Pieces written in Chinese, Malay and Tamil are accompanied by English translations, which ensure that important literary voices are heard in English for the first time.
Edited by Gwee Li Sui, this book is a significant milestone in Singaporean literature.
ABOUT VOLUME I — Life
The twenty-five works featured here document accounts of cross-influence where the voice of an individual and the character of a country are inflected in each other. You may find behind the distinct personalities of some pieces a dynamic but not always conscious engagement with social norms while, in others, the real world comes to the fore as what evolves through little human decisions.
ABOUT VOLUME II — Art
This volume balances two seemingly diametrical aspects of art: its idea or contemplation and its creation. Each of the twenty-five works featured here manifests a felt tension between the spiritual content of art, what compels its existence, and the pragmatic world to which it is given, what struggles to accommodate its essence. Art in this context appears in a variety of ways: as a material thing, a socio-cultural veneer, a technique or style making sense of life, and a subject of inquiry.