Politics of the Pandemic: Covid-19 and Challenging Malaysian Narratives

Image description: The text ‘Perikatan Nasional’ in white, on a blue background, with a rip going through the middle of the picture. Political paradigms and narratives represent the different forms of worldview within any particular society. These are the underlying assumptions that permeate political discourse and guide political action, consciously or otherwise. Much of the […]

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History and Heterogeneity: Armenia and Azerbaijan

Image description: excerpt from map showing Armenia, Azerbaijan, and Nagorno-Karabakh, with areas of clash in September coloured red. When the World Health Organisation declared Covid-19 a pandemic on 11th March, many commentators predicted a decrease in war as challenging times changed priorities. Certain surveys have supported this. The ACLED (Armed Conflict Location and Event Data) […]

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What about the Fish?

Image description: a fishing boat on choppy seas October 15th was Boris Johnson’s self-imposed deadline for talks with the EU. In September, the Prime Minister said that it would be time for both sides to “accept it and move on” if this date passed without meaningful agreement.  Yet, trade agreements are fiddly things, and politicians […]

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Recalibrating Liberalism

Image description: A drawing of the Statue of Liberty and some people arriving to America by boat. The liberalism I’m interested in isn’t the conventional, American sense of ‘liberal’ – but the older and classical variety. It’s the liberalism that warns against the excesses of state authority and champions civil liberties, constitutionalism and the rule […]

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Which Way France?

Image Description: Dramatic depiction of the Eiffel Tower and the Seine in an overcast day. In 2017, France defied the populist wave by choosing centrist banker Emmanuel Macron instead of the far-Right’s Marine Le Pen by a significant margin. Pundits in the English-speaking world lauded the French for their prudence. After Brexit and Trump, the […]

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As Putin consolidates domestic control, democracy is once again on the back foot

Image description: A close-up shot of Saint Basil’s Cathedral. In the latest installment of this year’s biblical succession of bad news, July began with an ‘all Russia vote’ (lacking the legal status of a referendum) on a bleak new package of constitutional amendments: a mishmash of national populism, cultural conservatism and centralist authoritarianism. Those who […]

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