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Eating Her Curries and KwayA Cultural History of Food in Singapore$
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Nicole Tarulevicz

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780252038099

Published to Illinois Scholarship Online: April 2017

DOI: 10.5406/illinois/9780252038099.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM ILLINOIS SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.illinois.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Illinois University Press, 2017. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in ISO for personal use (for details see http://www.universitypressscholarship.com/page/privacy-policy).date: 19 March 2018

Making the Past the Present

Making the Past the Present

Food in a Multiracial Port City

(p.24) 2 Making the Past the Present
Eating Her Curries and Kway

Nicole Tarulevicz

University of Illinois Press

This chapter studies the ways in which ideas about Singapore's food heritage are used to help Singaporeans negotiate the multiracial nature of the island-state. Rojak—a Singaporean salad or condiment—highlights how various foods have become potent national symbols that simultaneously speak to diversity and unity, and in the process help define the boundaries of what is considered national food. Though globalization has provided new foodways, old foodways remain potent determinants of Singaporean society. Exploring the relationship between the global and the local to explain how cosmopolitanism emerged as a powerful nationalist discourse, the chapter posits the port as the key mechanism for this process. It considers the movement of people as a force for shaping the food of the nation and the way the rhetoric concerning a migrant past is strategically deployed.

Keywords:   Singaporean food heritage, multiracialism, rojak, national food, foodways, Singaporean society, cosmopolitanism, migration

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