Why Chniatown Should Be Conserved

Topics: Singapore, Tourism in Singapore, Dengue fever Pages: 7 (2511 words) Published: August 27, 2013
Introduction
As part of the Singapore heritage society, I believe that Chinatown should be conserved and should not be replaced by yet another integrated resort. Our Society is dedicated to the preservation and promotion of Singapore’s history, heritage and identity. We have held many projects to raise awareness of Singapore’s history and cultural heritage. Chinatown has and will always be a place with much historical value and a part of Singapore’s limited heritage. According to the dictionary, heritage indicates the characteristics, properties or quality that one inherits at birth. It is also the nation’s mark of history, such as stately buildings, countryside, cultural traditions, that are seen as the nation’s wealth to be inherited by future generations. Chinatown has been a part of Singapore and a part of our home since the early days when the early immigrants came to Singapore, being one of the few heritages that we are still able to keep hold of. Despite being rather small in size, this little plot of land is the exact land that our forefathers stood on as they contributed to make Singapore what it is today. But with Singapore’s fast growth rate and overwhelming need to develop further, it is not surprising that its historical heritage is being considered to be demolished to make way for the new. Conservation

We wish to conserve Chinatown, as it allows us to be connected to our past. Our heritage reminds us of where we started from and of how we managed to progress from being a small fishing village to the bustling city that we are now, giving us a sense of direction in where we are heading to as a nation. Preserving our cultural heritage also goes a long way in explaining our rich cultural, political, social and educational values to the future generations. It is a lesson and an experience in which our forefathers handed down to us so that we can learn from their mistakes and successes, in hope that our nation will continue to grow into a better society. Our heritage is very valuable and can even be considered as a form of “national wealth” that has been passed down to us. After receiving this honour and responsibility, we as the children of this nation, should play our part just as our forefathers did and continue to pass this precious historical gem down for future generations to personally experience and remember our history.

National Identity
This year, Singapore has just gained 48 years of independence, and we have successfully created an identity for ourselves that makes us as Singaporeans more proud of our country and its accomplishments. A national identity is important to its country as it affects Singapore’s psychological defence, this would determine if Singaporeans will stay to fight or abandon Singapore when faced with obstacles. The term ‘National identity’ is a person's sense of belonging to one’s state or nation, a feeling one shares with a group of people, regardless of one's citizenship status. An identity is not an inborn trait but is slowly built up as a direct result of the presence of the similarities in people’s daily lives, such as national symbols, language, the nation’s history, culture and many others. For Singapore, one of these aspects is the various cultures, languages and heritage in which we possess. This is due to Singapore’s multi-religious backgrounds, Singapore started off with majority of the population being immigrants from countries such as Europe, China, Arabia, India, Melaka and Penang, who came to Singapore in the early 1800s. While they came to Singapore in hope of finding a better future, they shared their religion to the rest of the country too. Although Chinatown started off as a Chinese settlement, but it contributes significantly to Singapore’s multi-religious identity as it houses many different religious buildings -- temples, churches and mosques. An example is the oldest Hindu temple in Singapore, the Sri Mariamman which was built in 1827. During colonial...
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