Mind Your (Inter)Culture: The Goddess in the Living Room

A book club hosted by Constance Singam
Free Admission

Welcome to Mind Your (Inter)Culture, our new book club that aims to open up intercultural exchanges through books. This monthly get-together showcases translated works from Singapore and Southeast Asia. The readings and discussions broaden the exposure of the general public to works written in different languages, and promote intercultural understanding among the communities through books.

Admission is free! Donations at the door are welcome. Select is a nonprofit. Please support us and our programmes!



This March, we will discuss Latha's The Goddess in the Living Room. The book has been translated into English by Palaniappan Arumugum, Sulosana Karthigasu, Kavitha Karumbayeeram, Yamuna Murthi Raju, Ravi Shanker and Kokilavani Silvarathi.

The Goddess in the Living Room is a collection of short stories where the voices of Tamil women in Singapore are given a powerful outlet by Latha. The book begins with the story of Alyssa, who is left with her grandparents on Pulau Ubin as a child and her experience with devastating loss as an adult. Among other stories: A grandmother whose final wish is to carry the kavadi, a wife who wonders if her role is simply to cook for her family according to their needs and desires and a filial daughter caring for her terminally ill mother.

The session is hosted by Constance Singam, and will be in English. Join us for an afternoon of reading and discussion with Latha!

Get your copy of Latha's book at Grassroots Bookroom now!


For more information, please visit www.selectcentre.org, or e-mail programmes@selectcentre.org.

About The Writer

Kanagalatha (Latha) has published two collections of poetry in Tamil: Theeveli (Firespace) (2003), and Paampuk Kaattil Oru Thaazhai (A Screwpin in Snakeforest) (2004). She has also published a short story collection Nan kolai Seyium penkkal (Women I Murder) in 2007, which won the biennial Singapore Literature Prize in 2008. The English translation of her short story collection The Goddess in the Living Room was published in 2014.
Her poems and short stories have been published in Words, Home and Nation; Rhythms; Fifty on 50 and Tumasik, and various Tamil literary journals in India, Malaysia, Sri Lanka and France. Her works have been translated into English, French and German. She is currently the Sunday editor of Tamil Murasu, Singapore’s Tamil daily newspaper.

About The Host

Constance Singam is an author and civil society activist. She began her career in journalism, before taking a degree in English Literature in her forties, and a Master’s degree in her sixties. She has been a columnist in several publications. Her works include A History of the TWC: Building Social Space in Singapore, and Re-Presenting Singapore Women which she co-edited. She released her memoir Where I Was: A Memoir from the Margins in 2013. She blogs at: http://connie.sg/

Event Timeline
  • The event description was updated. Diff 2016-03-09 06:00:22
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Sat Mar 26, 2016
3:00 PM - 5:00 PM SGT
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25 Bukit Pasoh Road, Singapore 089839 Singapore
The Select Centre