Singapore: A Biography takes you there -- to those critical moments in the island's past, as captured through the personal accounts of people who actually lived through them. Encounter violent unrest on the city's streets, the jostling down its corridors of power, the high life of its up-and-coming elites, and the daily struggles of existence that lay beyond its five-foot ways, in an epic drama that stretches back over seven centuries. Grounded in scholarship yet fired by the imagination, this book tells a new Singapore story -- one more dramatic, complex and engrossing than you might expect.Singapore was not always the orderly and successful city-state that it appears to be now. Over the last seven centuries, the island has undergone several changes of identity. In this entertaining and wide-ranging account, drawn from research undertaken in collaboration with the National Museum of Singapore, Mark Ravinder Frost and Yu-Mei Balasingamchow present Singapore's mercurial life-story as experienced by the people who participated in it.
Singapore: A Biography brings together a Ming-dynasty travelogue, 19th-century memoirs and correspondence, modern oral histories and even radio and television broadcasts to reconnect a contemporary audience with the Singapore story.While famous names from Singapore's past take their place, this new story also introduces a cast of lesser known, though no less compelling, historical personalities -- from dissenting poets and radical ideologues, to patriotic factory workers and early feminists. The portrait of Singapore that emerges is dashing, lively and multi-layered, and it offers fresh insight into the ruptures and continuities that have made Singaporeans and their nation what they are today.
Yu-Mei Balasingamchow was born and raised in Singapore, before she went to the United States to study English and History at Northwestern University. Prior to writing full-time, she was an English teacher at a local junior college and subsequently worked at the Ministry of Education. In 2006, she was a senior researcher and script editor for the Singapore History Gallery and Living Galleries of the National Museum of Singapore. She is currently based in Singapore, where she writes about history, travel and culture in Asia.