The s/pores e-journal provides a multi-disciplinary platform for the dissemination of works investigating different aspects of historical and contemporary Singapore society. Moving beyond statist perspectives, the journal encourages research that opens up space for recalibrating the status quo in Singapore.
s/pores is an interplay of the short form, the lower case, the plural, the backslash, the informal, the non-elite, the multiple, the oblique. Pronounced ‘spores’, our title also denotes the dispersal of seeds of ideas, some of which should fall on fertile ground. s/pores is therefore simultaneously a declaration of authorial positioning as it is a statement of our hopes for a more variegated Singapore.
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s/pores came about from the discussions among recently-returned Singaporean academics in 2007, none of whom were trained as specialists of Singapore as such. They were keen to be ‘home scholars’, defined by Thai historian Thongchai Winichakul as those whose works are read, debated, and become, in a sustained manner, part of the scholarly discourse and cultural politics of their home country.
Conversations with like-minded friends, including those already pushing in new directions, were consolidated into an electronic journal for the relative freedom from financial outlay and from distribution challenges that the medium provides.
The initial issues have been managed by an editorial collective. To get the journal off the ground, the collective’s responsibilities included writing for s/pores and soliciting for contributions. The hope is to be inundated with submissions eventually.
Through the format of informal dinners and drinks, earlier issues of s/pores were guided by a panel of advisers who advised on directions and possibilities which might have been neglected by the collective. Our esteemed advisers included Chua Beng Huat, Tan Dan Feng, Tan Pin Pin, and Kwok Kian-Woon.
The aim is to publish once every four months, but expect that s/pores will be a semi-annual affair. The collective’s hopes are that it will become a regular forum for thoughtful, constructive commentary which will appear bi-monthly or even monthly.
s/pores is an independent, non-profit e-journal run by dedicated volunteers with a common passion for reasoned and diverse social discourse. Opinions and editorial decisions expressed do not represent those of the organisations the members of the editorial collective are affiliated with.
In alphabetical order:
A former colleague of Siew Min and Hui Kian at the History Department, National University of Singapore, Hong Lysa is currently researching on Singapore history and history writing on her own steam. (Jun 2009)
Kwee Hui Kian is Assistant Professor of History at the University of Toronto. Her research focuses on Southeast Asia and South China, where she has examined various themes relating to colonialism, capitalism, political economy and diasporic entrepreneurship, from the seventeenth century to the present. Currently, besides archival and library research, she is also doing fieldwork and collecting oral histories in many Chinese temples and related associations in Indonesia, Malaysia and Singapore. When she has spare time, she tries to gather data on the history of her parents’ old kampung near the Paya Lebar airport. (Apr 2007)
Edgar Liao is a PhD student in the Department of History, University of British Columbia. (Feb 2009)
Lim Cheng Tju is an educator who writes about history and popular culture in Singapore. His articles have appeared in Southeast Asian Journal of Social Science, Journal of Popular Culture and Print Quarterly. He is also the country editor for the International Journal of Comic Art. (Apr 2007)
Francis Lim Khek Gee teaches in the Division of Sociology at Nanyang Technological University. His research interests include religion, tourism and globalization, covering various Asian regions. (Apr 2007)
Having enjoyed traversing cultures and negotiating differences overseas for most of the last decade, Teng Siao See is resettling back in Singapore. Previously teaching at a Taiwanese university, she currently works on various research projects and engages in some teaching. She has interests in local history, postcolonial societies, education and cross-cultural communication. (Apr 2007)
Sai Siew Min is a Taipei-based Singaporean historian. In between taking care of two very spirited daughters, she finds time to read, research and and write about Singapore history. (Nov 2015)
Former members of the collective:
Daniel PS Goh (left September 2012)
s/pores editorial members (L to R) Siew Min, Lysa, Cheng Tju and Daniel made a trip to KL in August 2007 to attend a conference on Asian Studies in the Malaysian capital for the very first time as the s/pores collective.