Singapore, Singapura: From Miracle to Complacency (New Edition)
- About the Author
Modern Singapore is a miracle. Half a century ago it unwillingly became an independent nation, after it was thrown out of the Malay Federation. It was tiny, poor, almost devoid of resources, and in a hostile neighborhood. Now, this unlikely country is at the top of almost every global national index, from high wealth and low crime to superb education and much-envied stability. But have these achievements bred a dangerous sense of complacency among Singapore's people?
Nicholas Walton walked across the entire country in one day, to grasp what it was that made Singapore tick, and to understand the challenges that it now faces. Singapore, Singapura teases out the island's story, from mercantilist Raffles and British colonial rule, through the war years, to independence and the building of the current miracle.
There are challenges ahead, from public complacency and the constraints of authoritarian democracy to changing geographic realities and the difficulties of balancing migration in such a tiny state. Singapore's second half-century will be just as exacting as the one since independence--as Walton warns, talk of a "Singapore model" for our hyper-globalized world must face these realities.
"Duly pays tribute to the way Singapore and its 5.6m inhabitants have come to top the charts that define success in the modern world… [Walton’s] conclusions are more nuanced than either Singapore’s detractors or its cheerleaders would like."
— Financial Times
"By traversing this island city state on foot, Walton explores questions worth asking ... he is clear-eyed and unflinching in his portrayal of Singapore and its people."
— The Times Literary Supplement
"Walton writes fluently and engagingly ... an excellent one-volume primer on the country."
— Literary Review
‘In this lively account of the republic... [Walton] writes engagingly... with a light touch and with a sense of humour, making judicious use of anecdotes which reveal the subterranean cracks in Singapore’s society."
— South China Morning Post
"A rare jewel of a book—enchanting, illuminating and at times bloody funny… told in the tradition of Conrad with the eye of Theroux and the wit of Bryson. Brilliant."
— James Brabazon, journalist, documentary filmmaker and author of The Break Line
Nicholas Walton is a journalist and writer. He learned his trade reporting from around the world with the BBC World Service and, after several years in Singapore, now lives in the Netherlands. His first book, Genoa, ‘La Superba’, is also published by Hurst.
Cover Type: Paperback
Page Count: 320
Year Published: 2021
Size: 198mm x 130mm