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HERITAGE SITE, WAR MEMORIAL, AND TOURIST STOP: THE JAPANESE CEMETERY OF SINGAPORE, 1891-2005

Kevin Blackburn
Journal of the Malaysian Branch of the Royal Asiatic Society
Vol. 80, No. 1 (292) (June 2007), pp. 17-39
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/41493684
Page Count: 23
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Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
HERITAGE SITE, WAR MEMORIAL, AND TOURIST STOP: THE JAPANESE CEMETERY OF SINGAPORE, 1891-2005
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Abstract

Singapore's Japanese Association has dubbed the pre-war Japanese community which existed along Middle Road as Singapore's 'little Japan'. The principal historic site of this Japanese heritage in Singapore has been the Japanese Cemetery of Singapore, as it is the only remaining built heritage of 'little Japan'. The Japanese Association's promotion of Japanese heritage in Singapore, through encouraging visits to the Japanese Cemetery, has been mostly directed at Japanese schoolchildren in Singapore and Japanese tourists. However, because of the Japanese Occupation, the Japanese Cemetery is also problematically a large war memorial to the Japanese war dead enshrined there, including war criminals executed at Changi Prison after the war. This article analyses the paradoxes of the heritage function, war memorial role, and tourism value of the only enduring historic site of Singapore's 'little Japan', the Japanese Cemetery.

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