SINGAPORE, Nov 17 1998 (IPS) – Commerce-savvy Singapore just isn’t someone to miss out the possibility of cashing in on company online. Because of the alleged “E-commerce” predicted to boost five-fold this season and achieve some 34 billion bucks, the area state is busily attempting to position it self given that web business hub regarding the East. Singaporeans by themselves are already among the list of scores of consumers regarding the shopping that is virtual. If the a reaction to a regional play right here is any indication, a number of Singaporeans are maybe not planning to disregard the disadvantage of cyber shopping.
Certainly, whilst the play ‘Mail Order Brides and Other Oriental Takeaways’ points out, “the Web” have not just offered such merchandise as books, music cds and various foodstuffs you will find brides for hopeless grooms aswell.
‘Mail Order’, written and directed by a cable television newsreader Pek Siok Lian, had been expected to have just a season that is two-week. But which was extended by per week till Oct 29 because of demand that is popular. Presently there are intends to re-stage it for the next in early December week.
During a particular performance in the ny Global Fringe Festival in August, the play also received high praise from critics. The ‘New York Times’ has since included ‘Mail Order’ in its Fringe Selection list.
“The event workplace told us that ‘Mail Order Brides’ was one of many shows that are best-attended the Festival. We had standing ovations at the conclusion of nearly all shows,” boasts producer and director that is artistic Uekrongtham.
‘Mail Order’ arrived on the scene of Ekachai’s and Pek’s want to compose one thing about “the apparently impossible love” involving the bargirls of Bangkok’s Patpong red-light district and their Caucasian customers.
“We soon realised that the Patpong woman just isn’t alone”, recalls Ekachai. “All over Asia, several thousand Asian females fancy the dream that is same of taken far from poverty or tradition-bound lifestyles by men from more developed nations.”
As an element of their research, a Web was done by them search, utilizing the expression “mail purchase brides.” The time and effort with one internet search engine yielded nine entries with links to significantly more than 100 internet web sites and another inundated them with additional than 160,00 feasible matches.
“What is noteworthy is that these firms hawking peoples commodities are Western clothes providing up to a western clientele, and their items are touted as exotics through the developing globe, specially mostly appealing yet submissive young Asian women” claims Pek, that is additionally the play’s manager.
She asks,”Is this just one more as a type of Western hegemony or perhaps is it simply flesh trade?”
In line with the play’s programme, the amount of “mail order marriages” between Asian females and Western men in 1986 had been projected to achieve at minimum 2,000. By 1994, such marriages involving ladies through the Philippines and Western guys had reached 19,000.
Interestingly sufficient, the majority of the hopeful brides-to-be making their cyberspace postings from Hong Kong, ukrainian dating Singapore and Malaysia are Filipino ladies being employed as domestic helpers in these nations.
But there is however additionally a trend that is growing of males seeking mail-order brides from China. While just eight mainland Chinese females became the brides of Singaporean males in 1986, at the least 1,000 such marriages were held this past year.
A Chinese bride that is mail-order one of the play’s four characters, because are a definite Filipino domestic helper, a Thai intercourse worker and a Singaporean “sarong party girl” – a lady whom operates after Western expatriates.
The intercourse worker, the maid and also the bride that is chinese’ make postings on a web site, hoping international males will save them from their unsatisfying life.
The sarong celebration woman comes upon the web site while browsing the web, is incensed, and gets sucked to the site’s chat space. The play’s half that is first a variety of quick monologues where each girl attempts to justify her actions.
The maid, the Chinese bride and the sex worker have all undergone terrible experiences, and are lamenting their decision to go online by the second half.
The Filipino helper that is domestic left her work in Singapore to marry a U.S. soldier happens to be raped by their buddy; the Chinese mail-order bride is in jail for stabbing her Singaporean husband whom attempted to rape her while the intercourse worker has contracted AIDS.
Whenever ‘Mail Order’ was initially staged year that is last the ‘Straits Times’ reviewer Clarissa Oon criticised it as an “unimaginative one-hour- plus rehash of all worst stereotypes of Asian ladies, Singaporean men and their Caucasian counterparts”.
The play has since been restructured, and it also ended up being this variation that has been selected whilst the very very very first entry that is asian the latest York event. But Oon stays critical of ‘Mail Order’ and says it still lacks a proper discussion on which this means become A asian woman today.
Literature graduate Emma Yong, whom plays the part associated with Filipino maid claims though: “I am relocated by my character’s courage. She risks every thing by marketing herself to not known strangers on the net – within the hope that is slim she’ll be rescued from a life of poverty and servitude.”
Lawyer Deborah Ng, whom plays the Chinese bride, also states of her character: “She’s A china doll with a might of steel who embarks for a journey in order to make a much better future for herself by seeking a spouse.”
Pek by by by herself is unperturbed by remarks that the play presents stereotypes, retorting, “We are seeing these things taking place at our very own doorstep.”
Dr Phyllis Chew, mind regarding the Singaporean women’s association AWARE, is extremely supportive regarding the play. “It is a definite feminist statement regarding the discrimination and exploitation faced by an incredible number of Asian females she says as they struggle to better their lot. “Any play that highlights the plight of females, if they are underpaid, overworked, abused or raped should really be motivated.”
Pek in reality is stoked up about the concept of presenting ‘Mail purchase’ to wider audiences into the western due to the fact guys who fuel the industry plus the Web businesses that behave as the agents have a tendency to be after that. Her partner Ekachai adds they are now taking a look at the chance of developing a production that is new of play in the us.
“If all goes well, we desire to jointly create it with a recognised theatre business here and also have it tour around America when you look at the forseeable future” claims Ekachai. They might additionally bring the play to Britain and Canada year that is next.
In terms of Oon’s reservations about ‘Mail Order’, the dilemma faced by many people Asian girls looking for Caucasian husbands is apparently summed up nicely by Beatrice Chia, whom plays the Singaporean party girl.
Toward the final end regarding the play, her character says: “Maybe I’m the Occidental Oriental. No, the accidental Oriental. The banana that is original. Yellow on the exterior, white in the inside!”