China, Indonesia

Will Indonesia ‘descend’ into dispute in the South China Sea?

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The stand-off between Indonesia and China in disputed waters off the Natuna Islands may not be all it seems, writes Gatra Priyandita Great power tensions in the South China Sea have continued to increase this year, as China inches closer to its objective of de facto control of the sea, and the US begins regularising […]

Japan

Manga: a medium for historical debate?

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Scholars of Japanese manga are now beginning to look at its political messaging, how it can subvert dominant historical discourses and push for politically conservative or progressive agendas, writes Rebecca Suter Comics in Japan were seen as a superficial form of popular entertainment aimed mostly at children, throughout the twentieth century. It was no different […]

India

India adopts a national Goods and Services Tax … sort of

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In a society where tax avoidance is something of a national sport, India’s new GST is something of a major achievement, write Mandar Oak and Peter Mayer The distance between India’s mega-cities Kolkata and Mumbai is about the same as from Brisbane to Adelaide.  Goods shipped by road from Brisbane usually reach Adelaide in three […]

Japan

Nobel Laureate’s transnational literature: 100 per cent hybrid

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Conflicting claims on the literary heritage of Kazuo Ishiguro cannot be resolved when his books are the expression of a transnational literature that does not fully ‘belong’ anywhere, writes Rebecca Suter On October 5, 2017, the Swedish Academy announced that Kazuo Ishiguro was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature. In reporting the news, The Japan […]

Korea

North Korea: impulsive and reckless on the outside, rational and strategic within

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North Korea’s nuclear weapons capabilities will not undermine the current deterrence system and regional balance of power nor lead to a nuclear arms race, writes Stephen Szuster The resumption of a nuclear weapons program in North Korea and its successive missile tests in recent months have stoked great alarm, especially when the regime is routinely […]

Cambodia

Cambodia: a democracy no longer, descends into autocratic rule

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The steady erosion of democracy in Cambodia has been dramatically accelerated during 2017, writes Carlyle A. Thayer One of the world’s longest serving leaders, Hun Sen, Cambodia’s Prime Minister, has since 2016 set about deliberately dismantling his country’s democratic system. Month by month, the country’s political opposition has been eviscerated through a combination of coercion […]