As we continue to grapple with this chastening experience, in which some of us have lost livelihoods and loved ones, perhaps the more privileged among us should take a step back and ponder over what it is we are facing and what lessons we can learn from this collective chapter for humanity.
Socio Empath Posts
If you think the world is messed up, ask yourself: Why? What is it that you see, or hear, that annoys you? Is it the ignorance of those who exclaim their ignorance? Or is it the intellectualism of those who dismiss the concerns of common folks? Is it the irrationality of unthinking crowds? Or is it the cold rationality of so-called experts? Is it the conflicting noise that gets to you? Or is it the enduring silence on the things that matter?
Goh Poh Seng’s If We Dream Too Long is not a historical novel, but it has acquired historical significance with the passing of time. It provides a lens – albeit a flawed one through socially dysfunctional Kwang Meng – into the socio-political circumstances of post-riots Singapore in the late 1960s. Dream surfaces the contestation between reality and imagination in that period, through Kwang Meng’s fate, his representation of other characters and the ambiguous plot conclusion.
“Work-life balance” misleads us, by making life something we manage only in service of paid work. “Life-work balance” would fit Gen Y tastes better, for it implies that life is not just about paid work. But the word “balance” is problematic, because it entails a divide. Balance thus becomes a compromise, an excuse for fear of deeper self-investment. We end up reducing one or the other. So what’s missing?