Voices of Youth: A Conversation on Employment

Today’s young people are the most educated generation ever. They often enter the working world with considerably more years of schooling than their parents or grandparents. In Singapore today, more than 95 percent of each cohort of students progress to post-secondary education as compared to only 22 percent of those born in the 1940s[1]. (more…)

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Cancel Culture in Singapore: A Critical Perspective

There are many things in life you have probably cancelled on before – from a doctor’s appointment to an order from GrabFood, or even as simple as your plans so that you can relax in bed all day long. But, do you know that you can ‘cancel’ people or brands too? (more…)

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Seniors Living with Dementia during COVID-19

Seniors living with dementia can often feel isolated. Over time, the ability of a person with dementia to communicate becomes worse and interactions that once seemed so easy may be more difficult. This can be frustrating for everyone involved. Humans are very social creatures. We need healthy interactions with others to maintain our health. This does not exclude persons living with dementia. Loneliness will cause changes to the brain and psychosis also causes changes to behaviour. (more…)

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What Sociology Says About Social Distancing

The topic is an excuse or pretext to introduce the reader to sociology. However, as a reward for indulging me, I will eventually address the topic of social distancing, only to claim, however, that it is a misnomer. But, we need to know what sociology is about in order to understand that point. (more…)

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Circuit Breaker Couldn’t Break Us

At the start of every new year, my husband and I would set some common goals for the family.

Unlike resolutions which can feel big and often fade as the year progresses, goals seem more achievable and set the tone and intention for the plans we intend to carry out throughout the year. (more…)

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Hagia Sophia and Its Multiple Lives

In July 2020, Turkish President Erdogan surprised nearly everyone with his decision to annul a 1934 bill converting the Hagia Sophia into a museum and instead reinstated the space as a functioning mosque. The transition was quick: the announcement to do so was done on July 10, and within two weeks, the building reopened its doors to host Friday prayers attended by Erdogan, top government officials, and around 350,000 congregants. (more…)

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BLM Movement Around the World and in Singapore: Reflections on Struggle and Solidarity

On 25 May 2020, George Floyd was unjustly killed by a white police officer in Minneapolis, United States. The impact of his death reverberated across the country and the globe, from Sri Lanka to Spain and South Korea to Senegal. All over the world, people took to the streets – for the most part, peacefully – to demonstrate solidarity with Floyd, and the larger Black community in the United States. (more…)

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Leader of the Opposition and Political Evolution in Singapore

The appointment of Pritam Singh, the Workers’ Party (WP) chief, as the formal Leader of the Opposition (LO) is undoubtedly a significant step in the maturing of the political system in Singapore. Prime Minister (PM) Lee Hsien Loong’s gesture showed a recognition of the desire of the electorate for greater opposition representation. (more…)

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Narrowing the Generational Gap

One of the most discussed topics in school while I was growing up was the ‘generation gap’. It used to be about communicating with parents or those older than us, or on new technologies used by us versus those used by older folks, the youngsters back then and the experiences of our parents. (more…)

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Dealing with Negative People: Tips from the Quran for Muslim Activists

Many religious guidance and fatwas (Islamic legal opinion) that require adjustments and restrictions to Muslims’ religious duties as part of national counter-measures to the COVID-19 pandemic were issued all over the world. Examples are the closure of all mosques and accompanying restrictions such as to the number of congregants for obligatory daily and Friday prayers. (more…)

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In Pursuit of Work-Life Balance with Nurul Arif

In a recent study of 40 cities conducted by tech company Kisi[1], Singapore was ranked second after Tokyo for the most overworked city and among the bottom ten cities for work-life balance. The study showed that employees in Singapore worked an average of 44.6 hours per week which is among the highest in the world. According to experts, working long hours and being mentally occupied with work lead to spending less quality time with your family. (more…)

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Book Review: Beyond Bicentennial: Perspectives on Malays

When Singapore commemorated the 200th anniversary of Raffles’ arrival on the island last year, many dialogue sessions were held for the public to discuss and reflect on Singapore’s history. Through these dialogues, the public saw competing views on Singapore’s history. More critical voices emerged to challenge the dominant narrative on Raffles, the history of Singapore and the colonial construction of the Malays. (more…)

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