Unlike totalitarianism, there can be some degree of free speech and debate over policies in authoritarian systems. But those who challenge the leaders’ authority often become targets of physical or emotional abuse.
Without gender-affirming surgery, Lò Kim Thủy cannot change her legal gender in Vietnam. Without changing her gender, she cannot get a stable job or attend university. Without a job or an education, she may never be able to afford gender-affirming surgery.
A general contractor in Texas who has never set foot in Cambodia is among more than a dozen foreign citizens called up to a mass trial of the banned main opposition party. Their experiences suggest Thai authorities supplied a Cambodian court with their names.
Some migrants in Singapore are employed in industries that exploit both the environment and workers themselves, contributing to the climate crisis that sent many fleeing hostile weather conditions at home, as well as a labour crisis that relies on precarious work.
Misinformation has been circulating within Singaporean circles during the COVID-19 outbreak, especially within closed messaging apps like WhatsApp. Yet the country’s anti-“fake news” law is of limited use in tackling false narratives within these spaces.
As Indonesia has been slow to handle the COVID-19 pandemic, its instance of using foreign terms as part of its public messaging has laid bare widespread socio-economic and linguistic inequality.
Five Malaysian artists respond to the political turmoil in early 2020 by doing what they do best: making art.
The story of Benny Wenda, a Papuan activist living in exile in Oxford, and how his own childhood experiences led him to where he is today.
Every year, countries in Southeast Asia are affected by the transboundary haze generated by forest fires on peatlands. When cities are cloaked in smog, people complain about the slash-and-burn practices, only to move on once the smoke clears. This comic is the first in a series of pieces about the haze in Southeast Asia.
Months after regime change in Malaysia, the new government began to consider the question of abolishing capital punishment. Their deliberations have caused some controversy, but the case of one death row inmate raises questions about the potential of wrongful executions.