The pattern of Singapore
stems from the inherent cultural diversity of the island. The immigrants
of the past have given the place a mixture of Malay, Chinese, Indian,
and European influences, all of which have intermingled.
Behind the facade
of a modern city, these ethnic races are still evident. The areas for
the different races, which were designated to them by Sir Stamford Raffles,
still remain although the bulk of Singaporeans do think of themselves
as Singaporeans, regardless of race or culture. Each still bears its own
unique character. The old streets of Chinatown can still be seen; the
Muslim characteristics are still conspicuous in Arab Street; and Little
India along Serangoon Road still has its distinct ambience. Furthermore,
there are marks of the British colonial influence in the Neo-Classical
buildings all around the city.
Each racial group
has its own distinctive religion and there are colorful festivals of special
significance all year round. Although the festivals are special to certain
races, it is nonetheless enjoyed by all.