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Mobile city and the Coromandel Coast: Tamil journeys to Singapore, 1920-1960

By Sunil S. Amrith


This article uses the notion of the 'mobile city' to re-examine the history of Tamil migration to Singapore in the twentieth century. The article argues that the notion of 'mobile city Singapore' can help us to enrich and complicate histories of migration and citizenship. The argument of the article is that Singapore occupied a central but shifting position in the Tamil-speaking world spanning the Bay of Bengal. Singapore was a 'mobile city' both in its role as a node for countless migrations, but also in the sense that 'Singapore' circulated throughout south India as a symbol of urban modernity. The final part of the paper considers the shifting balance of mobility and immobility that characterized urban modernity as experienced by Tamil migrants

Topics: hca
Publisher: Taylor and Francis
Year: 2010
DOI identifier: 10.1080/17450101003665085
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