Kent Ridge Secondary School
Secondary 2 History
Keywords and Definitions: Chapter 5 – 10
Name: ___________________ Class: ___________
Chapter 5: How did external events before WW2 affect Singapore?
Industrial A series of events which, taken together, made changes to the way people lived
Revolution and worked.
Suez Canal A long canal that links the Mediterranean Sea with the Red Sea.
(cuts down travelling time from the West to the East)
World War 1 A war fought between the Allied Powers (Britain, France and Russia) and the
Central Powers (Germany, Hungary-Austria, Ottoman Empire), which later
spread to more than 30 countries in the world.
Great Depression A time of great decrease in business activities with widespread unemployment
that started from USA which later spread to the rest of the world.
Chapter 6: How did WW2 affect Singapore?
Impregnable Describing Singapore being so strong or inaccessible that it cannot be broken
fortress into or captured.
Intelligence Intelligence is information that is gathered by the government or the army about
their country’s enemies and their activities.
(Japanese gathered intelligence on the British’s defense strategies for Singapore
Interned If someone is interned, he or she is put in prison or in a prison camp.
Propaganda Action taken, especially by the government, to influence the way people think by
spreading certain ideas, beliefs, news etc, which are often inaccurate and
Nipponisation The promotion of the Japanese spirit by the Japanese
Black market If something is bought or sold in the black market, it is bought or sold illegally.
Inflation When the value of money increases
Rationing Rationing is the controlled distribution of scarce resources, goods, or services.
E.g. the Japanese introduced rationing during WW2.
Chapter 7: How did the local people respond to British rule after WW2?
Strike When workers go on strike, they refuse to continue working for their employers
(usually because they want better pay or working conditions)
Trade Union An organised association of workers. The union’s main aim is to take care of the
welfare of the workers, to improve the pay and working conditions of its
Democracy A form of government in which people exercise political control directly or though
(Singapore is a democracy)
Independents People who stand for elections but do not belong to any political party
Constitution A set of laws which a government follows. [E.g. the 1948 Constitution]
Limited self- Certain less important areas of government would be controlled by local
government representatives while the more important areas are still held by the colonial
master (in this case, the British)
Chapter 8: How did Singapore progress to internal self-government?
Coalition A coalition government is a government made up of a combination of two or
Figurehead A figurehead is a leader who has little authority or influence.
Internal self- In the Singapore context, this would mean that local representatives would
government control all internal matters of government except external affairs and defence.
Merdeka A Malay word meaning freedom.
Singapore A student union set up by the communists in 1955. There were students from 10
Chinese Middle Chinese middle schools
Chapter 9: How did Singapore achieve Independence?
United Malays Malay political party holding the most power in Malaya since the 1950s.
Malayan Chinese Chinese political party representing the Chinese in Malaya.
Malaya Indian Indian political party representing the Indians in Malaya.
Alliance Party The coalition government of Malaya, made up of UMNO, MCA and MIC
Singapore A political party made up of the Singapore branches of UMNO, MCA and MIC
[aim: to win more seats in the Singapore Legislative Assembly.]
Federation of A federation is a group of states united with one central government, but each
Malaya state has its own government to deal with local matters.
Federation of Malaya has 11 states in the Malay Peninsula.
Malaya gained its independence on the 31st August 1957.
Tariffs Taxes collected by the government on goods coming into or going out of the
Common Market An agreement between countries allowing goods produced in one country to
enter another country without having to pay taxes
Radicals In this context, refers to party members who supported the Communists and
By-election An election held between general elections to fill a seat left vacant because a
member has resigned, been expelled or died during a government’s term of
Referendum A direct vote by the people of the country to decide on a particular issue, instead
of having the government make the decision.
Cobbold Made up of 3 British men and two Malays from Sabah and Sarawak, led by Lord
Commission Cobbold, to find out if the people of Sabah and Sarawak wanted the merger.
The United An international organization which tries to get all countries to work together in
Nations maintaining peace and dealing with international problems.
Special rights Certain privileges given to a particular group/race. For example, a certain
number of jobs in the government were reserved for them.
[Malays in Malaya had special rights, and UMNO was very protective of these
Nation Consists of an organized population and a government
Republic A nation governed by representatives elected by the people, and where the
Head of State is not a king or queen, but a President.
Chapter 10: How did Singapore tackle its challenges in its early years of independence?
Diversified A diversified economy includes economic activities like manufacturing, banking
economy and finance.
Multinational Companies that have businesses in more than one country.
Export-led Refers to setting up factories to manufacture goods for export.