Maid in Hong Kong: The commodification of intimacy

Domestic workers in Hong Kong. Source:  'istolethetv', Flickr
https://www.flickr.com/photos/istolethetv/4579844255

On Sundays, the streets and parks of Hong Kong’s central business district are filled with activity and vitality, presenting a display of the city’s character distinctive from the monotony of the weekly grind. Officially termed ‘domestic workers’ and colloquially referred to as ‘helpers,’ tens of thousands of predominantly Filipino and Indonesian migrant women occupy the… Continue Reading ➤

Taiwan’s Overseas Constituents: The Often Overlooked Victims of Taiwanisation

Former president Lee Teng-Hui (left), with Tsai Ing-Wen, the current President of Taiwan. Lee was a notable supporter of Taiwainisation. Source: Wikimedia Commons, The Office of the President of Taiwan.

An annual poll conducted from 1994-2016 shows that belief in a unique Taiwanese identity, exclusive of a Chinese identity, has continuously garnered more adherents in the Republic of China on Taiwan (Yu 2018, 1). The political significance of this is another issue; polls conducted by the same institution show that support for immediate or eventual… Continue Reading ➤

Crimea: why do the Russians think it’s theirs?

Crimean bridge

On 27th February 2014 Russian military personnel entered Crimea and began the process of taking over key government buildings in Simferopol, the region’s capital, as well as major communication hubs such as airports. This bloodless coup was completed in a few weeks and Crimea was formally incorporated into the Russian Federation in March. The events… Continue Reading ➤

Is time running out for liberation movements in government? The case of South Africa and Zimbabwe

Mugabe and Zuma

This past year saw the back of two gargantuan figures in Southern African politics. Robert Mugabe resigned in November 2017, having been President of Zimbabwe since its liberation from colonial rule in 1980. Just 3 months later, in February 2018, Jacob Zuma resigned from the Presidency of South Africa, ending a 9-year spell in office…. Continue Reading ➤

We were promised Brexit would leave us better off – Theresa May’s deal shows we were lied to.

Source: Flickr

In the 19th century, a web of disputes concerning the relations of two duchies along the border of Denmark and the German Confederation, Schleswig and Holstein, came to epitomise the exhausting complexity of the European political landscape in that era. Lord Palmerston, perhaps Britain’s most famous Foreign Secretary, famously remarked: ‘Only three people have ever… Continue Reading ➤

The Fall of the ‘European Iron Lady’

Source: Flickr

The regional election in Hessen, held at the end of October, saw the seemingly impossible – the beginning of the end of Angela Merkel. Following her party’s poor performance, she made a two-fold announcement. On the one hand, she would not be running for re-election at her annual party congress in December, where the Christian-Democrats… Continue Reading ➤

Ele Não: The International Media’s Complicity in the Rise of Populism in Brazil and Beyond

Jair Bolsonaro Source: Wikimedia Commons

Brazilian Elections: Front Page News on an Unprecedented Scale This Sunday, Brazilians will go to the polls for the second time to elect their next president, but the result is already all but decided. Right-wing populist and retired army officer Jair Bolsonaro, coming off a landslide (and almost outright) victory in the first round, is… Continue Reading ➤

Transcontinental Turkey: Where is it heading?

Source: Wikimedia Commons

Relations between Turkey and the West are undeniably fraught. The post-war paradigm of relations has shifted. President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s increasingly authoritarian rule has brought him into conflict with Western leaders, the debacle of Pastor Brunson indicating a new crisis point with the US, and the jailing of journalists bringing complaints from Germany. These shifting… Continue Reading ➤

A “Bavarian Revolution”?

Source: Wikimedia Commons

“The election [on Sunday 14th of October]”, writes the Süddeutsche Zeitung, “was a typical Bavarian revolution. Fireworks, a lot of smoke [and] dreams in Schwabing [a central Munich district in which the Greens obtained 34% of the votes] which, throughout the night, felt like they could become true. The morning after, the Alps are still… Continue Reading ➤

Will Brexit leave Europe’s defences depleted in the face of an increasingly aggressive Russia?

Image credit: Tanju Varlıklı

Brexit is just one of the many destabilising influences that face an increasingly precarious system of European cooperation. In fact, the haste with which the EU wishes to reach an agreement with Britain is largely driven by the need for Europeans to concentrate on more existential threats. Issues such as rising discontent over the migrant… Continue Reading ➤