LATEST ARTICLES

The history of rhubarb: medicinal uses, recipes and why owning it in Russia once meant a warrant for your death

The history of rhubarb: medicinal uses, recipes and why owning it in Russia once meant a warrant for your death

Considered an important medicine in China for 2,000 years, rhubarb has been discovered over and over again in its long history. Full of oxalic acid, rhubarb leaves might have poisoned a US president; smuggling valuable rhubarb root warranted death in Russia, and, centuries later, when the heavily sugared stalks were used in desserts, rhubarb was mercilessly …read more

The Chinese man who helped Australian women get the vote

The Chinese man who helped Australian women get the vote

A group of wealthy and respectable middle-class Sydney women gathered in a tea room in the 1890s, where they “sat by favour of that Chinese gentleman” Quong Tart while they considered how best to fight for the right to vote, a movement that was gaining ground in England.

History of the chicken: from Asian jungle to the world’s kitchens

History of the chicken: from Asian jungle to the world's kitchens

The wiry bird scuffling around in the mountainous jungles near the northern Thailand-Myanmar border doesn’t look like much, but this scrawny red jungle fowl has been tapped as the primary ancestor of the modern world’s all-important domestic chicken.

Dior’s dolls in couture echo post-war miniature fashion show

Dior’s dolls in couture echo post-war miniature fashion show

French couture house Dior has this week remembered a time of crisis 75 years ago, when the bloody upheaval of WWII pushed French fashion designers to dig deep to revive the French fashion industry. Rising to the challenge, in 1945 post-war French couturiers dressed miniature mannequins in high fashion collections and sent them on a tour …read more

How cruise ship industry plans to get passengers back on board after coronavirus crisis

How cruise ship industry plans to get passengers back on board after coronavirus crisis

Eric Lee Tsun Lung has enjoyed more than 50 ocean cruises since he was a youngster and he looks forward to going to sea again soon, regardless of the spate of coronavirus outbreaks on cruise liners, frequently dubbed “floating petri dishes” in the media.

Why Hong Kong needs more trees and what’s preventing it

Why Hong Kong needs more trees and what’s preventing it

To stretch his legs and gulp a few lungsful of fresh air during Hong Kong’s lockdown-lite, Edwin Lau Che-feng went walking in parks and along Hong Kong’s greener streets. Like other Hong Kongers, he mostly abided by social distancing restrictions during the coronavirus crisis. He stayed home, avoided shopping centres and steered clear of crowds. But …read more

The suite life of a writer

The suite life of a writer

Writers once travelled through Asia in a leisurely fashion, steamers gently rolling between Bangkok and Batavia, rickshaws wheeling through the streets of Singapore, pleasure boats pulling into Penang. European wanderers, adventurers and authors drank gin slings while waiting for sumptuous dinners; colonial matrons sipped tea on hotel balconies; and the business of empire rumbled on.

The weight of the world

The weight of the world

Children from Hong Kong and China are not immune to the global epidemic of obesity. About one in five Hong Kong schoolchildren are now classed as overweight or worse, according to the Hong Kong Department of Health’s latest survey, released last year. They were not eating enough fruit and vegetables, but eating too much salt …read more