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Film

How 'The Quiet American' Continues to Colonize Vietnam

Neither bombs nor bumbling Americans broke the will of the Vietnamese. Something far more insidious and far-reaching, however, may have.

Recent
Film

The Absolution of Paul Theroux's 'Saint Jack' in a World Lacking Irony

The narrative of Paul Theroux's (and later Peter Bogdanovich's) Saint Jack offers a palliative to the high-priced hedonism taking place in an American-owned compound in Singapore.

Film

Death Tripping Tibetan Style With Gaspar Noé's 'Enter the Void'

Reaching for the ultimate psychedelic experience, director Gaspar Noé found The Tibetan Book of the Dead, but did he know what he found when he crafted Enter the Void?

Film

Why Does Paul Bowles' 70-Year-Old Existential Masterpiece Continue to Test Our Limits?

The Sheltering Sky is itself a test of limits: its form is an exploration of how far one can go in novel writing.

Politics

It's in the Blood: A Conversation with History Writer Tim Hannigan

Treading the lines between journalist and academic, travel writer and scholar, author Tim Hannigan talks about his latest book and his unorthodox approach to writing historical narratives.

Interviews

On Evil Yogis and the Icy Silence of Yoga's Post-Disintegration

David Gordon White's life-long research of South Asian religions reveals the dubious roots of the West's feel good contemporary yoga industry.

Film

Yellow Fever and Yum-Yum Girls

Multiple versions of the classic story The World of Suzie Wong offer different takes on a social phenomenon, but can any of them escape the biases of their authors?

Interviews

Champagne and Knuckle-Dusters, or, Modern Life in Singapore

Novelist and poet Catherine Lim, the most persistent critic of Singapore's government, talks candidly about her new memoir, the half-century anniversary of the city-state, and the death of founder Lee Kuan Yew.

Interviews

Death in the Land of Smiles

A recent biopic about the last executioner in Thailand explores the extremes between killing and redemption.

Travel

Clove Cigarettes and Indonesian Books: An Armchair Traveler's Pleasure

The Modern Library of Indonesia series offers unparalleled access to the cultural landscape of the world's fourth most populous country.

Music

The Noir Traveler Returns: The Evolving Sound of Alvarius B.

The Invisible Hands have given us a glimpse of Alvarius B.'s (Alan Bishop) view of the world from the center of Cairo. It's not a happy perspective, but there's a hint of hope.

Visual Arts

'Longing for the Past': When the Voices of the Dead Finally Reach Us

While listening to "The Dance and Song of Laos" (1906) a haunting voice, both enticing and archaic, mingles with the crepitating noise of the antique shellac.

Culture

Blast Shadows

The atomic bombing of Hiroshima forever altered popular culture, and the earliest traces of that tectonic shift can be found in an obscure government report and newsreel about the event.

Books

Invisible Factory Billionaire: The Minting of a New Post-Colonial Literary Darling Tash Aw

With the publication of his third novel, Tash Aw's celebrity status is now assured. But do the books equal the hype?

Film

"Only God Forgives'" Weird Yet Coherent Oriental Psychedelic Noir

In Bangkok, the convulsions of violence on the street merge with scenes of surreal ritual that is possible in the West only in dreams… or drug reveries… or films.

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