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Hidden Hands and Divided LandscapesA Penal History of Singapore's Plural Society$
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Anoma Pieris

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780824832216

Published to Hawaii Scholarship Online: November 2016

DOI: 10.21313/hawaii/9780824832216.001.0001

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The Citadel

The Citadel

(p.188) Chapter 7 The Citadel
Hidden Hands and Divided Landscapes

Anoma Pieris

University of Hawai'i Press

This chapter completes the analysis of the period of penal transportation through which a particular urban history of Singapore has been recovered. It describes the reactions of the colonial government to growing unrest and the hardening of colonial authority as it gained greater political autonomy from India. It surveys the institutions created to defend colonial authority against native populations. It also describes the end of transportation. During the transfer years, political changes were embodied in three architectural interventions that suggested the defensive introversion of the independent settlement. The first of these was a series of battlements provoked by the threat of mutiny and constructed from 1858 onwards on various hillocks encircling Singapore town. The second intervention was in radical alterations to the colonial jail at Pearl's Hill, which was transformed into a holding facility for local prisoners. The final architectural imposition was the Government House on Prinsep's Hill, the magnum opus of convict industry.

Keywords:   penal transportation, colonial Singapore, Straits Settlements, urban defenses, colonial government

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