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The Political and the International: Reflections on the Singapore Mutiny 1915

Date: 24 September 2015

Time: 6.30-8pm

Venue: Clement House 2.02

Speaker: Dr Itty Abraham 

The mutiny by Indian army soldiers in Singapore in February 1915 is usually dismissed as a footnote in the conjoined histories of World War I, Empire, and decolonisation.  One reason why the mutiny is marginalised in national historiographies is because it does not conform to a politics that seeks the formation of an independent territorial nation-state as its inevitable conclusion.  Dr Abraham returns to that initial moment to argue that the Singapore mutiny offers a unique window into the processes shaping and regulating an emergent space of the international, a novel imaginary describing an unsettled zone of attraction and desire.  A close reading of soldiers’ letters and official reports traces a transnational web of subversive actors and actions outlining an anti-colonial politics of equality and emancipation uncontaminated by the desire for national liberation. 

Dr Itty Abraham is Associate Professor in the Department of Southeast Asian studies at the National University of Singapore.

This event is free and open to all with no ticket or pre-registration required. Entry is on a first come, first served basis. For any queries contact Professor William A. Callahan (W.Callahan@LSE.ac.uk).