Singapore History and Culture

Page history last edited by James Touchberry 13 years, 4 months ago

History and Culture of Singapore


     Singapore was formed as a trading colony for Britain in 1819.  They joined the Malaysian Federation in 1963 and then broke off to become an independant country two years later creating the national holiday known as National Day on August 9.  On February 15, 1942, Singapore fell to the Japanese.  The defeat of the British outpost on Singapore is sometimes considered the worst British defeat of World War 


     On Nov 28, 1990 - Lee Kuan Yew was elected as Singapore's first Prime Minister, starting what could be called a new section in modern history. Also, on July 1, 1981 Changi International Airport was opened as Singapores main aiport due to heavy cicilian travelers. At one point in time, the Singapore Air Force aka "RSAF" stored some of their airplanes.


 Changi International Airport





     Singapore is a country in which many different races interact freely.  In Singapore, food can be found everywhere.  Singapore cuisine is a very important part of their culture.  The Indian cuisine in Singapore is very spicy, the Chinese is milder and uses more seafood, and the Malay cooking is almost sweet with its liberal use of coconut milk.  Singapore used to be divided into racial boroughs such as Chinatown, Little India, and Kampong but in recent times these areas have all formed together into just Singapore.  Traces of each area can still be found in the areas.  The people of Singapore respect silence and often trust indirect notions and body language more than spoken word.  Elders are at the top of the ladder as far as respect goes.  Anyone has to respect the elders even if they are not related.  Most greetings are either prolongued handshakes or a bowing of the head followed by a "salaam" depending on the person's gender, religion, or ethnicity.  The people of Singapore are very formal and respectful.  If you are exchanging business cards, treat them with respect.  Never write on, fold, or disrespect someone's business card because that is a form of disrespect.  Singapore residents often think that if someone answers their question quickly, it means that their question was given a thoughtless answer and was not taken into consideration seriously.

People in Singapore enjoy soccer, cricket and rugby.


     The holidays in Singapore are fairly similar to those in the United States such as New Years on January 1 and Christmas on December 25.  Singapore however does have some of its own holidays.  They celebrate National Day on August 9 every year.  National Day is Singapore's independence day like the 4th of July is in America.  National Day comemorates Singapore's separation from the Malaysian Federation.  Singapore also has Vesak Day, or the birth of the Buddha.  This year, Vesak Day is on May 28.  Next year it will be on May 2.  On Vesak Day, Buddhists celebrate the birth and enlightenment of Buddha.  The day is spent by Buddhists by showing acts of kindness such as giving to the poor, freeing caged animals, and even massive blood drives organized by young monks.  Vesak Day is usually concluded with a massive procession lit by candles.











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Singapore--James Nick  

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