SINKIE GO HOME (foreclosed futures) by Godwin Koay
What happens when the self-deriding term “sinkie” – coined by those frustrated by repressive laws and broken privileges once attached to a more stable idea of citizen, the “Singaporean” couched in racialised heteropatriarchal terms – is turned on its head as something to be confronted, played back to this speaker of xenophobic tropes (like the state-supplied “foreign talent”, almost always conflated with “trash” when abbreviated to “FT” in online spaces) usually uttered in the same breath?
“Sinkie Go Home” surveys and speculates upon layered contradictions that come with centring nationalism in the formation of personal identities. It is an anxious secretion forced out from the pressures of living and working in contemporary Singapore, abstracted and ambiguous enough to reflect neoreactionary political and labour currents coming into form globally.
Go home. But where is home? Perhaps it has in fact sunk as alluded to. But not because of a purported flood of migrants, maybe it was never there as described, a fiction bought into. Could this phrase be understood in another way – as retirement? A stopping of a certain imaginary and rhetoric, of the term itself and its defensive frame, even to say, “go home, stop working, stop working for this lie.” The nation-state and its demarcations continue to haunt us like a spectre, while at the same time aiding extractive capitalist interests in expansion across borders, choking us like a haze. In this worldview, winning always necessitates and justifies others losing. There must be other ways of being.
3 Colour Risograph print
Dimension: 29.7cm x 42.0cm
Printed on Maple Bright paper