15 Jul (Tue): Island Archaeology -- An Obscure But Bountiful Past

Pulau Seking was home to the last village community in Singapore’s southern islands. It survived until 1994, when the islanders were evicted to make way for a landfill. As recently as in the 1980s, it was a “lively settlement” with 500 or more inhabitants, whose ways of life and cultural outlooks could be traced back to a time when Singapore’s offshore islands were the home, habitat and hunting ground of people from all over the straits.
What links did Pulau Seking hold to Singapore’s ancient past, and what have we lost from the disappearance of these island villages? Geoffrey Benjamin, Vivienne Wee and Normala Manap will offer a rare look into a vanished world, based on their research and stays at Pulau Seking in the late 1970s and early 1980s.

Speakers: Geoffrey Benjamin and Normala Manap

Geoffrey Benjamin is a social anthropologist and Senior Associate at the Centre for Liberal and Social Sciences (CLASS), Nanyang Technological University. Vivienne Wee is Research & Advocacy Director at AWARE and Programme Consultant/Associate Faculty at SIM University.

Normala Manap is a polytechnic lecturer and yoga teacher who spent many months at Pulau Seking in 1982, where she learnt much about the origins, culture and social outlook of the villagers.

Free. Registration is on a first-come-first-serve basis and each talk has a max. seating capacity of 245 participants. Online registration available from 1 July.

Time: 7.30pm - 9pm
Venue: National Museum of Singapore Gallery Theatre, Basement
Website and contact: http://www.heritagefest.org.sg/