The Newsletter 67 Spring 2014

Singaporeans in Batam: living with discourses of danger and corruption

Su-Ann OhReema Bhagwan Jagtiani

SINGAPOREANS RESIDING IN BATAM have received little attention from scholars. This is surprising given the nature of their sojourning, the economic importance given to the Singapore-Johor-Riau cross-border region, and the crossborder nature of these experiences. The academic literature has tended to focus on the economic aspects of this configuration – the differentials and arbitrage opportunities in relation to industry and tourism – and the sociological impact on the lives of Indonesians on the island. While there has been some research on Singaporeans in Batam, it has mostly considered Singaporean men’s masculinity and sexuality in relation to intimate relations with islanders.