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Articles on Southeast Asia

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Actor Margot Robbie blows out a candle on the cake to celebrate her birthday during the pink carpet event for the movie ‘Barbie’ in Seoul, South Korea, in July 2023. (AP Photo/Ahn Young-joon)

What Vietnam’s ban of the Barbie movie tells us about China’s politics of persuasion

Once the context of cultural and territorial appropriation by China in Southeast Asia are understood, Vietnam’s ban of the Barbie movie isn’t surprising.
A prayer altar in the main gathering hall at the temple Wat Ratchapradit in Bangkok, Thailand. Pictures from History/Universal Images Group via Getty Images

What is Theravada Buddhism? A scholar of Asian religions explains

Theravada Buddhism is the dominant religious system in several parts of South and Southeast Asia, but there is a rich diversity of beliefs and practices in this tradition.
Establishing the financial worth of a river’s fish is complicated when many people don’t sell the fish they catch. Tang Chhin Sothy/AFP via Getty Images

How much is the world’s most productive river worth? Here’s how experts estimate the value of nature

Putting a dollar value on nature has staunch opponents who say it’s morally wrong, but without it, building dams and other infrastructure can run roughshod over vital ecosystems.
Boddhisatva Avalokiteśvara, considered to be a compassionate protector, is believed to regularly visit Earth. taikrixel/ via iStock Getty Images Plus

What is a bodhisattva? A scholar of Buddhism explains

Buddhists believe that bodhisattvas reside in heavenly realms but can also appear on Earth disguised as humans, animals or other types of beings.
The right track? Foreign Minister Penny Wong meets with Chinese Foreign Minister Wang during the G20 foreign ministers’ meeting in Bali last month. Johannes P. Christo/Pool/AAP

Can Australia recapture the spirit of middle power diplomacy?

Careful diplomacy rather than uncritical alliances will help steer a course through Australia’s foreign policy challenges.

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