locale part i: presentation
location: the japanese park cemetery
Why? I visited the location often in JC for research for a history project, and it’s a place that I find really peaceful and historically rich, so I thought it would be apt if I used this project to dig down into the unique aspects of the site. :))))))
Photographs and written observations about the Park. :))
Here’s a brief overview of the history of the Park, which is Southeast Asia’s largest Japanese cemetery, housing 910 tombs. :O
So as a cemetery would have it….graves and tombstones dating from the pre-war times to the post-war times. In my presentation I gave a brief overview of some of the different tombs, like tomb markers for the karayuki-san, Japanese prostitutes who were surprisingly some of the first Japanese people on the idea. As the community flourished, the Japanese’s socio-economic status heightened and you can see this from the shift in the tombstone to more elaborate designs. With the war came memorials and tombstones dedicated to the war dead as well. I thought it was interesting how you could see the rise and fall of the community through the different groups of tombstones.
There are a lot of plaques littered around the Park, especially at tombstones of notable Japanese people who for example, made contributions to not just the Japanese community, but pre-war Singapore as well.
Interestingly enough the prayer hall isn’t supposedly for a fixed religion, so anyone can come here to pray. Midō is a religion neutral term apparently.
On my first visit I sat down on the steps and noted down some observations about the place:
Recorded some ambient noise but there was really barely anything other than rustling haha.