Ssa2211 As1

Topics: Singapore, British Empire, Colonialism Pages: 5 (1620 words) Published: March 4, 2013
Name: Wang Minghui
Matriculation no. A0105569Y
Tutor’s name: Dr Donna Brunero
Tutorial group: GE2
Total word count: part1-1137 words; part2-264 words.

About two hundred years ago, Raffles arrived at a small fishing village in Melaka Strait, took charge of it and started a new generation. Now, this small fishing village is named Singapore and became one of the most globalized countries in the world. Raffles, the adventurer in 1819, is still an iconic hero in Singapore’s social memory. This paper will interpret the founding of Singapore in 1819 as a result of four main factors: Raffles’ ambition as a clerk of the East India Company, the Anglo- Dutch competition, Malay policy and Temasek’s revival as a trading emporium in 14th century. First of all, the competitions between British and Dutch advanced EIC’s process of finding Singapore. Even though Dutch and British had been allies in the Glorious Revolution, with the colonial expansion of British, Dutch gradually lost their dominance of global trade. There were four Anglo-Dutch wars from 1652-1784 which showed how intense the Anglo-Dutch competitions were. Since Dutch controlled Batavia in 1619, EIC stepped up their expansion in Southeast Asia. When EIC had already took control in India, EIC was eager to find an outpost expand trade, secure trade routes and to secure bases for trade in Southeast Asia to against Dutch’s dominance in this region. Hence, EIC sent Raffles to Southeast Asia to find a strategic location for British to secure their trades. History proves that Singapura turned out to be the culmination of EIC’s expansion in Southeast Asia. In a word, finding Singapura to make it an outpost of EIC was one of British strategic step of expanding their control and ensure their secure in Southeast Asia. Secondly, the founding of Singapore can be seen as a result of Raffles’ personal ambitions as an employee of the East India Company (EIC). The East India Company is seen as an anomaly in the history of the world and a weapon of British Empire in Southeast Asia in 1600-1873. As mentioned before, being given an imperial power, EIC was aiming to build a colonial region in Southeast Asia and fight against Dutch. However, Raffles, as a clerk of EIC, took an adventure to Singapura when more than half of EIC clerks tried to Asia died in the process. Since EIC was desperately to have an outpost over the southern end of Melaka Strait, Raffles, as a humble clerk in EIC, was ambitious to take the challenge and bring his career to a higher level. As a result of this, he was appointed to be Lieut-Governor in this region. From another perspective, being influences by the free port Batavia which was controlled and ran by Dutch, Raffles decided to find a strategic location over the southern end of Melaka Strait and make it a free port which against EIC’s idea of building Singapura as a colonial outpost of EIC. He declared his mind in his diary to make Singapura a free port which welcomes merchants and trades.. Apparently, Raffles’ decision of making Singapura a free port is a significant start on the way that Singapore became a globalized city from a little fishing village, and this decision was against EIC’s policy that Singpura should be built as its colonial outpost. From these two perspectives, the founding of Singapore as a free port can be seen as Raffles’ ambition of building prestige in EIC or creating a new free port. Thirdly, Raffles’ signing with Tengku Husain is also a significant factor in finding of Singapura. After Tengku Husain’s father died, even though he was supposed to take charge of the kingdom, he had neith recognization nor power in SIngapura. At that time, fingding someone who could help him earn his control and reputation. As mentioned before, in the mean time, Raffles was looking for some where as EIC’s outpost. Quikly, they became partners and signed treaty. In the treaty, Raffles was able to take control of Singpura, and in exchange, Raffles who...
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