Patriarchy and resistance in Singapore

Stephanie Lawson*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


Patriarchy in Singapore is manifest in a fairly standard range of politically and socially conservative practices and has long been legitimated, as it has elsewhere, by ideas about ‘culture’ and ‘tradition’ as well as by naturalistic assumptions about gender roles – as if culture reflects nature in any case. These ideas also coalesce around a notion of ‘the family’ – or at least a certain type of family – as constituting the very foundation of society. Similar concerns have been reflected in the rhetoric of politicians (and others) of different stripes, at different times, and in different countries around the world. Just as frequently, the concern about women and their specific role in the family has been tied into broader concerns about the nation, its character and its capacity to survive – indeed, to reproduce itself quite literally. In other words, patriarchy and conceptions of the ideal family associated with it are scarcely tied to any specific cultural, geographical or historical context – although the form these take, the way in which they are institutionalized, and the justifications devised on their behalf, may vary according to local factors.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationWomen, activism, and social change
EditorsMaja Mikula
Place of PublicationLondon ; New York
PublisherRoutledge, Taylor and Francis Group
Number of pages21
ISBN (Electronic)9781136782718
ISBN (Print)0415357381, 9780415357388
Publication statusPublished - 2005
Externally publishedYes

Publication series

NameRoutledge research in gender and society


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