Reddit AMA with the Living With Myths Organisers

The organisers of the Living With Myths project, a public seminar series seeking to unpack the powerful myths that shape Singaporean values and identity, held an Ask Me Anything session on Reddit to wrap up their series of talks.

Here is one of the highlights:

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The rest of the questions and answers can be viewed here.

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One of Us: Affirming our Common Humanity, One Story at a Time

The event “One of Us – Affirming our Common Humanity, One Story at a Time” was held on Sunday, 13 September 2015 from 4-7pm at Artistry, 17 Jalan Pinang.

Stories were told from the perspectives of non-LGBT persons. They send the message that, despite some differences, the LGBT individual is not apart and is “One of Us”. We hope these moving portraits will serve to make it easier for LGBT people as well as their family, friends and colleagues to find resolution and affirmation in their lives.

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Living with Myths: Exploring Singapore’s Pasts and Futures (Project Synopsis)

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The Living with Myths project commenced in July 2014 as a public seminar series seeking to unpack the powerful myths that shape Singaporean values and identity. Over the course of a year, the project brought together 28 academics and independent researchers to investigate the nature and implications of these widely held myths. In the ten talks comprising the series, the speakers discussed various aspects of state-led myth making over the last fifty years, namely, the official discourses and policies on historical narratives, race and multiculturalism, poverty, immigration, citizenship and history education, technology, and literature and the arts. In considering the relevance of studying the past to the future, the speakers also explored more nuanced and inclusive ways of cultivating Singapore’s national values and identity beyond those upheld by the state-sanctioned Singapore Story narrative.

The talks were organised by a collective comprising three historians (Loh Kah Seng, Thum Pingtjin and Jack Chia), Select Books and volunteers. The project pursued various lines of collaboration beyond the academe. It was a core project of Project 50/100, undertaking a common endeavour to uncover and discuss new narratives and perspectives of Singapore. The project also collaborated with independent venues, many of which involved the arts community, namely, TheatreWorks, Artistry, the Centre of Contemporary Art, and Muse House. These venues will receive an honorarium for the free use of the venue for the talks, which is funded by a grant of $3,000 from Project 50/100. All the talks were well attended (often by over a hundred participants) and usually filled to capacity. Civil society activists, in addition to fellow academics, moderated the talks. The Living with Myths project was nominated for the 2015 Singapore Advocacy Awards.

As a series of public seminars, the aims of the project were two-fold: while speakers – most of whom are junior scholars – brought the results of their research to a wider audience, they would also embrace a meaningful social role as public intellectuals and thinkers outside of the academy. The series witnessed fruitful and oftentimes robust debates between the speakers and members of the audience. These served, hopefully, as important moments of self-reflexivity for both sides of what turned out to be a dialogic, though fraught, conversation on researching Singapore’s history and navigating the future.

Following the end of Living with Myths X in August 2015, the project has turned to editing the talks into a book on Singapore’s myths, to be published by Select Books in early 2016.

The Living with Myths Collective
Loh Kah Seng, Sogang University
Thum Pingtjin, Oxford University
Jack Chia, Cornell University
Select Books

August 2015

Project Website:

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Cartooning for Students Workshop on 08 Sep

This project will teach students how to draw cartoons about topics from the past, present issues and to imagine a future of possibilities. A brief history of cartooning in Singapore will be conducted before a skills session is given to allow participants try their hands in drawing a comic strip.


Cheah Sinann’s graphic novel “The Bicycle”.

Comics Seriously A practical perspective 

The world of comics is serious business. Learn about how comics are used to communicate, and the function of comics in our lives. Make your own comic strip through the simple stages of story-telling. Our speakers are Lim Cheng Tju, Singapore comics historian, and Cheah Sin Ann, veteran comic artist. The programme is suitable for teens age 11 – 14. Should the programme be fully registered and you would like to be placed on the waiting list, please email your name and contact number to with the subject title.

Date: Tuesday Sep 08, 2015
Time: 03:00 PM – 05:00 PM
Venue: Activity Room in Bukit Merah Public Library
Lang: English
Note: Registration is required without payment.
Fees: Free for 1 seat(s)
A community oriented event, this is held during the September school holidays.

To Register: 


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Project 50/100 Projects

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Freedom Boat: Harbouring New Truths (Event Photos)


Stewords Riverboat


Young at Art: A Students Panel on Freedom


A’shua Imran’s “Passive Aggressive Bonds”.

Project 50/100 core project Freedom Boat: Harbouring New Truths was successfully held on 2 Aug 2015 at the Stewords Riverboat. Organised by Human Rights NGO MARUAH in collaboration with Brack, the program featured an exhibition as well as a full-day lineup of discussion forums and performance art pieces on the topic of Freedom.

For more photos and documentation,
Brack’s Facebook Album:
Freedom Boat Event Page:

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Living with Myths X: Singaporean Words and Images

Living with Myths

Living with Myths X is now open for registration.

Come listen to Gwee Li Sui and Sonny Liew talk about words and images!

Time: Wednesday 19 August 2015, 7.30-10.30 pm
Venue: The Seminar Room, Block 43 Malan Road, Singapore 109443

For More Details and to Register:

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Freedom Boat: Harbouring New Truths (2 Aug, 12pm-9pm)

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Join us at Freedom Boat, the third Project 50/100 initiative to be showcased after Living with Myths and In the Interim! Attendance by RSVP at

View the program line-up at the Facebook event page here.

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In the Interim Exhibition Opening at Artistry Cafe






In the Interim Exhibition Opening at Artistry Cafe
Photos by Jennifer Teo

Kopitiam Lengkok Bahru (KLB) consists of a handful of volunteers who work together with Beyond Social Services and 50/100 to engage a group of enthusiastic youth who live in public rental flats in the Lengkok Bahru estate.

Late last year, we gave this group of nine youths various photo assignments with the aim of documenting the different aspects of life in Lengkok Bahru – the neighbourhood, their home(s) as well as important aspects of their everyday life. We stressed the importance of using photos to tell their stories which would be shared with the rest of Singaporean society. Instead of letting them use conventional digital cameras, we handed them second-hand film cameras. With these, we hoped the youth would be more thoughtful in constructing personal narratives while composing their photographs.

The Exhibition
Some of us are aware of Singaporeans who live in public rental housing. Still, many might not be able to relate to the everyday lived experiences of those living in these housing estates. This can be said for the KLB volunteers before we embarked on this fulfilling journey with the youths in the program. As such, we were intrigued to learn more about them and Lengkok Bahru.

It was also our intention for the nine participants of this program to take ownership of the process – as unprofessional or unpolished as the photographs may seem. After all, these photosets provide insight into their unique perspectives and stories.

While rental housing is temporary for some families, others have lived in rental flats for more than a decade. Although circumstances differ, these families are not unlike the typical Singapore family, where everyone strives to make the best of difficult situations. We see how people forge close communal relationships, leaning on these very ties for strength and comfort. Be it with immediate neighbours, neighbourhood friends or even the amiable storekeepers, the volunteers witnessed a tight knit group with helping each other to make everyday a little easier to get through.

The main objective of this exhibition is to therefore have these young photographers share their community – Lengkok Bahru – with others. These budding artists are aged between 13 to 18 years old, and most have lived in Lengkok Bahru for at least a few years, if not their entire lives. All of them are either in secondary or tertiary institutes.

The exhibition is divided into three parts:
1) Lengkok Bahru as Home
2) Strategies
3) Aspirations beyond Lengkok Bahru

The arrangement is intended to draw viewers into different facets of life in and around Lengkok Bahru, akin to other similar estates around Singapore. It also provides a glimpse into the lives of families in public rental housing, where the creative use of limited spaces shared by so many inadvertently leads to opportunities to form strong bonds of solidarity.

Additionally, it is hoped that through the exhibition, the youth are afforded a platform not only to showcase their photographic skills but to vocalise issues they face in their lives through soundscapes. Viewers are encouraged to also listen to what these photos represent and hopefully respond to the budding community artists through postcards and messages.

Project 50/100 is proud to sponsor this creative, meaningful and moving project. In the Interim’s themes of agency and storytelling by the youths from Lengkok Bahru are cast against a background of growing inequality in Singapore. This is very much in line with our effort to commemorate Singapore’s 50th year of independence in novel ways that bring out alternative themes overlooked in the official celebrations. This wonderful exhibition, the upcoming seminar on inequality and poverty as well as other outreach efforts to come are also very much in line with our focus on engagement with the immediate communities involved as well as Singaporeans at large. In The Interim is the first core Project 50/100 that has come to fruition and we thank and congratulate the fantastic team that brought it together!

For more information on the exhibition and the KLB, please visit the Kopitiam Lengkok Bahru page at

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Living with Myths IX: Cultural Medallions, Poverty, Histories

Living with Myths

Monday 20 July 2015, 7.30-10.30 pm
Venue: Space 3, TheatreWorks
72-13, Mohamed Sultan Road, Singapore 239007

Living with Myths IX tackles fuzzy stories and expedient narratives. C. J. Wee Wan-ling considers Kuo Pao Kun’s cultural legacy beyond multiculturalism. Teo You Yenn examines the links between poverty, welfare and development. Mark Baildon and Suhaimi Afandi argue that the teaching multiple perspectives of history fosters good citizenship.

Join the waitlist for Living with Myths IX here or visit the Living with Myths website and facebook page to stay updated on future events!

Missed the earlier seminars in the series? Head on over to the Living with Myths Youtube playlist to catch up on all the previous sessions!

Living with Myths is a monthly seminar series which explores the myths that shape our identity. Project 50/100 is proud to support Living with Myths as one of our core projects.

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