A Knot in Time

Whether they are tied into place as the weaver's imagination wanders, or aligned in code-like calculations, the minuscule knots of a carpet narrate tales of an ancient craft and those who keep it alive.

What Makes the World Go Round?

text SHAILENDRA BHANDARE photos ASHMOLEAN MUSEUM, UNIVERSITY OF OXFORD AS everyone knows from the old English adage, the answer to the title of this tale is...

Bangkok’s Chinese Heritage May Soon Be Bulldozed

The Thai capital's new train line may see the removal of cultural sites including an iconic village of alms bowl makers 

Island of Tongues

Researchers say one-fifth of the world’s languages – including numerous Asian dialects – developed from the lingua franca of Taiwanese aborigines. Few will associate primarily...

Civilisations for Sale

Not many people in the Middle East have the freedom to enjoy art and marvel at their cultural history. This fear has been cultivated by certain doctrines which state that the admiration of artistic work is heretical. There is a link in some Middle Eastern cultures between statues and the worship of idols; the appreciation of statues is therefore often construed as blasphemous in some religious sects. The rampant looting of centuries-old artefacts and the ongoing destruction of thousands of years of antiquities have brought about a sense of deep loss and bewilderment for many people, in the Middle East, and abroad.

On Poisons & Policies

After decades of wars and violence, from the Vietnam War to the Killing Fields of Cambodia, peace now reigns across Southeast Asia. Even in Myanmar, war-torn for decades, peace negotiations are underway. But one war stubbornly remains: It is brutal and merciless, backed with the harshest laws and toughest police action, but is nevertheless apparently intractable and unwinnable. This is the drug war.
Empu forging the keris dagger

Daggers Forged in Fire

Text and images by Diego A. Garcia Of the countless weapons bought and sold every day around the world, relatively few can be considered a...
Qusbegi: The Lord of Birds

Qusbegi: The Lord of Birds

Text and images by Bryan Chan and Marija Savic Fitted in an enormous cowhide coat and a colourful peaked hat ringed with fur, the qusbegi...

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