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By Kenneth Tan

Via shut readings of latest made-in-Singapore motion pictures (by Jack Neo, Eric Khoo, and Royston Tan) and tv courses (Singapore Idol, sitcoms, and dramas), this publication explores the chances and obstacles of resistance inside a complicated capitalist-industrial society whose authoritarian govt skillfully negotiates the dangers and possibilities of balancing its on-going nation-building venture and its "global urban" aspirations. This e-book adopts a framework encouraged by way of Antonio Gramsci that identifies ideological struggles in artwork and pop culture, yet keeps the significance of Herbert Marcuse's one-dimensional society research as theoretical limits to acknowledge the ability of authoritarian capitalism to subsume artworks and pop culture whilst they try consciously--even every now and then successfully--to negate and oppose dominant hegemonic formations.

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Extra resources for Cinema and Television in Singapore: Resistance in One Dimension

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Both translate into a mandate to rule relatively free from the public’s scrutiny, allowing the government to effectively monopolize collective decision-making to the exclusion of alternative or oppositional views. ” National Education suppresses the “subversive contents of memory” and serves instead as anti-history, an example of ritualized invocations which do not allow development of the content recalled; frequently, the mere invocation serves to block such develop- one-dimensional singapore 25 ment, which would show its historical impropriety.

This ‘siege mentality’ has come to define not only Singapore’s attitudes to defense, but also its own sense of its place in the world. This siege mentality unites the people, and gives them both an imaginary and a concrete sense of national purpose. Today, military service—called National Service—is compulsory for all male Singaporeans, who must undergo full-time military training for up to two years before they statutorily turn into adults at twenty-one years of age. For most of their adult life, they can be called up annually for military training for up to forty days each year.

The humanities subjects seem to be viewed favorably only when they provide cultural resources for nation building, or when they help to train workers for the culture industry needed to stimulate the economy, or when they provide peripheral ‘enrichment’ opportunities for the important technocrats trained by the system. For decades, the dominant pedagogical mode—tied to the function of training individuals for specific roles in the system—has been to drill students to perform well in examinations, a method that seems to have produced students with impressive abilities and grades.

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