September 23, 2017

Nepal’s Mystical Dolpa in the Mist

Dolpa’s jewel is Phoksundo, a lapis lazuli-coloured lake, Nepal’s deepest and second-biggest. (Photo by Hum Gurung via Nepali Times)

Dolpa is one of the last two among Nepal’s 75 districts that doesn’t yet have a road connection and seeks to protect its pristine remoteness. Along with its rugged tree-less terrain, Dolpa’s jewel is Phoksundo Lake, a lapis lazuli-colored body of water, it is Nepal’s deepest and second-largest lake. Read More »

New Hercules Film is Bringing Back the Muscle

The muscle man. (Photo by Kerry Brown, Paramount Pictures and Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Pictures via The Conversation)

Hercules is once again back on our screens. This latest version has Dwayne “the Rock” Johnson in the title role, alongside an international cast which includes a host of British stars. John Hurt is Cotys, king of Thrace, who hires the services of Hercules and his band of mercenaries, notably Ian McShane’s Amphiaraus and Rufus Sewell’s Autolycus. As with any re-working of Greek myth, there are ... Read More »

Turkish Sherbet: Sugar, Spice and All Things Nice!

(Photo via Daily Sabah)

Since the beginning of the 20th century Ottoman Turks have been celebrating with sherbet. Made with flower petals, herbs and spices mixed with fruit, sherbet was known to be the drink of not just the Sultan, but also a drink enjoyed by the people Read More »

Remembering Maya Angelou


Dr. Maya Angelou was one of the most renowned and influential voices of our time. Hailed as a global renaissance woman, Dr. Angelou was a celebrated poet, memoirist, novelist, educator, dramatist, producer, actress, historian, filmmaker, and civil rights activist. Read More »

Kosovo’s Ottoman City Frozen in Time

A panoramic view of Prizren. (Photo by Lars Olsen, Creative Commons License)

There are some cities in other countries that somehow seem so familiar that you almost feel like you are at home; it is the language you hear, the many familiar words you catch here and there on shop and street signs, and a song which you can easily sing along to. Sometimes the streets, the buildings and maybe the faces ... Read More »

Inside the Pashtun Mindset

Malala Yousafzai addressing the United Nations Youth Assembly in New York on July 12, 2013. (ViewsWeek photo via video stream)

Malala Yousafzai, the Pakistani Pashtun teenage women education campaigner, continues to receive honors since being attacked by the Taliban in her hometown of Swat last year. This week, Britain’s prominent contemporary portraitist Jonathan Yeo unveiled a portrait of Malala at Britain’s National Portrait Gallery. Days before that she opened a 188 million pound library in Birmingham, a city where she ... Read More »

Scientists Oppose Canada’s ‘War on Science’

Dr. Katie Gibbs speaks at a Stand Up for Science rally at Parliament Hill in Ottowa last September. (Photo by Kevin O’Donnell, via Evidence for Democracy)

Seven of Canada’s most prized scientific libraries are being shut down and some of their contents have already been burned, thrown away or carted off by fossil fuel consultancy firms. This development is part of a Harper administration plan to slash more than $160 million in the coming years from the Department of Fisheries and Oceans, or DFO — an agency charged ... Read More »

Becoming Mohammad Yousuf

Mohammad Yousuf

Believe it or not, societal prejudice against Dalits was a significant factor behind the decision of former Pakistani cricket star Yousuf Youhana to convert from Christianity to Islam and adopt the name of Mohammad Yousuf, so writes former diplomat Shaharyar M Khan in his book, Cricket Cauldron: The turbulent politics of sport in Pakistan. Khan was the chairman of the Pakistan Cricket Board, between ... Read More »

Kosovo’s Secularism Challenged

A mosque in Prizren, a city in Kosovo, with a large population of people of Albanian origin. (Photo by Mac Coates, Creative Commons License)

The Islamic Movement Unite (LISBA) party’s public challenge to Kosovo’s separation of religion and state and the country’s EU agenda will not succeed, an official said.   Foreign Minister Enver Hoxhaj said religious groups are trying to bring Islam into the public discourse and dictate a lifestyle to citizens.   “Kosovo and its citizens are Europeans by history, geography and ... Read More »

Art in Exile

Ishtar Gate at Pergamon Museum - Berlin, Germany. (Photo by To Uncertainty And Beyond, Creative Commons License)

The Babylonian Ishtar Gate, excavated from Iraq, cannot be seen by most Iraqis. This is because it is displayed at the Pergamon Museum of Berlin, far away from the sight of Iraqis.   The gate, along with many other artifacts, was excavated by German archaeologists before the First World War in the territory that is currently modern Iraq. In the ... Read More »