Single and the City: State Influences on Intimate Relationships of Young, Single, Well‐Educated Women in Singapore.

Karlien Strijbosch*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalSpecial issueAcademicpeer-review


Low fertility rates and an aging population challenge the city-state of singapore. The singaporean government therefore encourages singles to marry and have children. Using ethnographic data and interviews (n = 28), collected between august and december 2012, this explorative study examined the relationship between government interference and the love lives of young, well-educated, single women in singapore. Getting married is expected not only by the state, friends, and family members but also by singles themselves. The author examined how young women view and experience these social ideals in their daily lives. Foucault's (1982, 1984) idea of governmentality and budgeon's (2008) idea of couple culture were used to investigate how government policies intervene in the romantic relationships of individuals through various channels, such as the housing policy, matchmaking initiatives, and social norms. The government may effectively affect individuals in certain ways, whereas at other times individuals may act in a manner that is opposite to what the government expects.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1108-1125
JournalJournal of Marriage and Family
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 2015

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