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Title: Summoning Wind and Rain: Studying the Scientization of Fengshui in Singapore
Keywords: Scientization, Fengshui, Singapore, middle class, habitus, doxa
Issue Date: 20-Jan-2010
Citation: OH BOON LOON (2010-01-20). Summoning Wind and Rain: Studying the Scientization of Fengshui in Singapore. ScholarBank@NUS Repository.
Abstract: This thesis examines the processes of and the reasons for the scientization of fengshui in Singapore. There are many ways in which fengshui could possibly be `scientifically¿ reinvented. However, the Singaporean case shows that the re-invention has taken shape in five main processes, namely, professionalization, instrumental rationalization, secularization, intellectualization, and individualization, which together constitute the fengshui-scientization trend. These processes alter the epistemological foundation, logic, appearance, and mode of accessing fengshui, consequently transforming the art from a cultural practice laden with traditional Chinese symbolism into sets of scientific techniques that emphasize the rational calculation of `fortune¿. In this thesis, I aim to show that fengshui-scientization is not the mere mimicry of conventional scientific ethos, but a dynamic process that involves the adaptation of a traditional art to modern circumstances constituted by the ideological and institutional frameworks in Singaporean society. In adapting to these frameworks, `scientized¿ fengshui exhibits the `orthodoxy¿ that is established by the former and reflected in the Singaporean `doxa¿ of pragmatism, secularism, and self-reliance. Therefore, it accommodates the worldviews of middle-class Singaporeans by maintaining resonance between their habitus and the Singaporean doxa.
Appears in Collections:Master's Theses (Open)

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