A Dance of Moths
by Goh Poh Seng
In his third novel, A Dance of Moths, Goh explores the complex lives and human relationships of two men in modern Singapore.
Commended: National Book Development Council of Singapore (1996)
Book DescriptionThe theme of the indiviudal's sense of alienation and search for meaning in life is once again the main concern of acclaimed novelist and poet Goh Poh Seng. The chief protagonist Ong Kian Teck, a gifted, hard-working creative designer in an advertising firm, epitomizes the successful Singaporean. Yet as Kian Teck's daily life unfolds we see an intense but ineffectual man searching, Kafka-life, for something but not quite knowing what. In his blind quest Kian Teck experiments with drink, sex, the stock market, designer clothes, flashy cars, even drugs... all the trappings of materialistic, consumer-driven Singapore.
The other protagonist, Chan Kok Leong, an accounts clerk, strives to free himself from the drudgery of his job and the pain of life with his family in their small, high rise flat in Toa Payoh. Common to both stories is the sense of isolation and lack of communication - between friends, between husband and wife, between parents and children, all locked in their separate worlds.