Monday, October 13, 2014

Voices Under the Rising Sun

We are pleased to announce the publication of the children's book Voices Under the Rising Sun, by Fiona Hodgkins, under our Autumn Wonders imprint.

About the Book

Voices Under the Sun is a companion children's book to From Syonan to Fuji-Go: The Story of the Catholic Settlement of Bahau in WWII Malaya about the lives of those who went to the Catholic settlement of Bahau during World War II.

For children: Can you imagine how war might affect your life? This book tells the amazing story of how the lives of three children were changed by World War II in Malaya. Read their diaries, letters and other documents to work out what happened to them…

For parents: Looking for a different kind of book to engage your child? Written in the form of both primary and secondary sources such as diaries, letters and discursive texts, this book will enable them to develop their skills of historical deduction but in addition to being an interesting and informative historical story, this book is also an educational resource for English writing. 

About Fiona Hodgkins
Fiona Hodgkins is a primary school teacher who has taught in England, Zimbabwe, Sharjah, Trinidad, Venezuela, Dubai and Singapore. A History graduate, whose passion for delving into the past has influenced her teaching, she has written Voices Under the Rising Sun for children as a companion piece to From Syonan to Fuji-Go, an in-depth book based on her research into the settlement of Bahau. She is married with three children and spends her life between England and Singapore where she works as an Educational Consultant. 

Friday, October 10, 2014

From Syonan to Fuji-Go: The Story of the Catholic Settlement of Bahau in WWII Malaya

We are pleased to announce the publication of From Syonan to Fuji-Go: The Story of the Catholic Settlement of Bahau in WWII Malaya by Fiona Hodgkins.

During the Japanese Occupation in World War II, some 3,000 men, women and children left Singapore to form a Catholic settlement in the jungles of Malaya, near the town of Bahau.

Based on extensive interviews and access to private manuscripts, this book provides a vivid account of life in Bahau, and presents new insights into those who were there, why they went, and the lasting legacy of Bahau on their lives. It is also a moving account of the author’s journey of discovery about her mother, who was interned at Bahau.

Fitting memory to those who died, honourable recognition of those who survived, and an important resource for future generations, this is essential reading for those who seek an understanding of an important part of Singapore’s history.
"This book is a valuable contribution to our understanding of this period in Singapore’s history."
– Paul Madden, British High Commissioner to Singapore, 2007-11
"Fiona Hodgkins’s excellent encyclopaedic chronicle of Fuji-go is one of great value and significance – historical, informative ... beautifully written, enjoyable and absorbing."

About the Author
Fiona Hodgkins, a History graduate whose professional life has revolved around history and education, currently lives in Singapore with her family. Harnessing her passion for social history and living in Singapore gave her the unparalleled ability to research the story first hand which she has done in a thorough, professional and yet sympathetic way. 

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Potret Puisi Melayu Singapura

We are pleased to announce the publication of Potret Puisi Melayu Singapura, from the Singapore Malays: Our Heritage and Legacy series, co-published with The Malay Heritage Foundation.

About the Singapore Malays: Our Heritage and Legacy series

Existing books, references and research papers focusing on the Malay community in Singapore are often written from an outsider’s point of view looking in. Publications by Singaporean Malays about the socio-historical development of the Malay community in Singapore are still few and far between. 

The Singapore Malays: Our Heritage and Legacy series aspires to bridge that gap by publishing a series of books that will encourage introspection and reflection on our social history and culture in a more in-depth manner.

The titles in this series are purposely varied to include topics on culture and the arts, social history and cultural development, trends in religious practices and socio-economic life, and the spirit of enterprise of the Malay community in Singapore. This is to allow different perspectives and unique insights into the everyday lived-experiences and collective memories of our community to be brought forth. Each writer will analyse the various challenges faced by the Malay community in Singapore, from the nineteenth century to contemporary times, using his or her own lens and world view, supported by intensive research. 

We hope that the series will inspire further reflections, and deepen our understanding and appreciation of our heritage and our contribution to Singapore’s development as a nation.

About Potret Puisi Melayu Singapura

Written in Malay, Potret Puisi Melayu Singapura  by the multi-award poet, novelist and  Cultural Medallion (2007) for Literature, features the works of  44 Singapore Malay poets, from post-independence era to present time. They include established poets from the pioneer generation such as the late Masuri S N and fellow Cultural Medallion winners such as  Muhammad Ariff Ahmad, Suratman Markasan and Mohd Latiff Mohd. His analysis also featured works from up and coming, emerging writers such as Jufri Supa’at, Noor Hasnah Adam (Goh Chok Tong Youth Promise Award, Distinction, 2007) and Chairul Fahmy Hussaini, just to name a few.

This book will provide researchers and those interested in Malay literature with a glimpse into how the historical context, community and the individuality of the poet have given poetry written by our Singaporean writers its own distinctive identity.

About Isa Kamari

Isa Kamari has written eight novels in Malay, many of which have been translated into English. He has published collections of poems, short stories and plays. He also writes drama serials and documentaries for television. His awards includes S.E.A. Write Award, Singapore's Cultural Medallion and the Anugerah Tun Seri Lanang.

Narrating Presence: Awakening from Cultural Amnesia

We are pleased to announce the publication of Narrating Presence: Sub-title: Awakening from Cultural Amnesia, from the Singapore Malays: Our Heritage and Legacy series, co-published with The Malay Heritage Foundation.

About the Singapore Malays: Our Heritage and Legacy series

Existing books, references and research papers focusing on the Malay community in Singapore are often written from an outsider’s point of view looking in. Publications by Singaporean Malays about the socio-historical development of the Malay community in Singapore are still few and far between. 

The Singapore Malays: Our Heritage and Legacy series aspires to bridge that gap by publishing a series of books that will encourage introspection and reflection on our social history and culture in a more in-depth manner.
The titles in this series are purposely varied to include topics on culture and the arts, social history and cultural development, trends in religious practices and socio-economic life, and the spirit of enterprise of the Malay community in Singapore. This is to allow different perspectives and unique insights into the everyday lived-experiences and collective memories of our community to be brought forth. Each writer will analyse the various challenges faced by the Malay community in Singapore, from the nineteenth century to contemporary times, using his or her own lens and world view, supported by intensive research. 

We hope that the series will inspire further reflections, and deepen our understanding and appreciation of our heritage and our contribution to Singapore’s development as a nation.

About Narrating Presence: Awakening from Cultural Amnesia

In this book, Dr Azhar investigates and raises questions on the background and social-historical conditionings that had shaped and coloured Malay thinking and world view, from the past to contemporary thought. The author had endeavoured to fathom the thinking and soul of the society concerned through its literary heritage and letters.

In his endeavor to examine the thinking and world view of the Malays of Singapore, through its literary tradition, Dr Azhar Ibrahim has linked literature to various relevant social science theories, such as general sociology, sociology of literature and history of ideas. In this way he had widened the coverage and enquiries of Malay literary criticism in  Singapore beyond the more conventional approach.

To what extent had colonialism conditioned the Malay thought of Singapore Malays? What has been the historical and intellectual response of Malay literature and letters to the various changes brought by colonial capitalism in the beginning, and what is its impact on contemporary thinking in the form of historical continuities?  

This book portrays the condition and stirring of the soul of the Singapore Malays in forging their own cultural identity, how they endeavoured to maintain their tradition while at the same time cultivate ‘the New Malay’, all within a unique and relevant context. This work by Azhar Ibrahim is a significant contribution to the discourse on the thinking and world view of the Malay community of Singapore.

About Azhar Ibrahim

Azhar Ibrahim, PhD, is a Visiting Fellow at the Department of Malay Studies, National University of Singapore (NUS). He obtained his PhD and MA from the same Department in 2008 and 2002 respectively. His research interest includes sociology of religion, sociology of literature and critical literacy, and the Malay-Indonesian intellectual development. He pursued his post-doctoral research on social theology in Muslim Southeast Asia at the Faculty of Theology, University of Copenhagen, Denmark, and at Abbasi Islamic Studies Program at Stanford University, USA.