Flowers of Shanghai – New Opium Traces column at PopMatters

Hey hey hey just in time to be timely, my latest Opium Traces column has been posted on PopMatters…a meditation on Han Bang Qing’s 1890s novel The Sing-song Girls of Shanghai and Hou Hsiao Hsien’s 1998 film adpation Flowers of Shanghai.

Check out the full article here: http://www.popmatters.com/column/life-in-the-interzone-in-old-shanghai/

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Great review of In the Land of Pagodas!

Bookish.asia has given our translation of Alfred Raquez’s book In the Land of Pagodas a stirling review (this same reviewer also gave us our first review on Amazon which got us 5 stars)!

We are very pleased that Raquez’s travels through China at the turn of the century are gaining a wider audience thanks to our efforts.

Check it out the Bookish.asia review here: http://bookish.asia/land-pagodas-%E2%80%A2-alfred-raquez/

Buy our book here: http://www.niaspress.dk/books/land-pagodas

Kebayoran Baru in Jakarta with roving mind Tariq Khalil

My pal Tariq Khalil continues his awesome series on mid-century Jakarta architecture in Indonesia Design magazine with an engaging write-up on Kebayoran Baru. Once a satellite town of old Batavia, but now lost in the chaotic sprawl of modern Jakarta, Kebayoran Baru boasts some of the best kept mid-century domestic architecture in town. Long underappreciated, the post-war architecture of Indonesia is due for a revival: unique, dynamic, beautiful…

Check it out here: http://www.indonesiadesign.com/culture/wild-story-behind-kebayoran-baru/

Land of Pagodas excerpt in NeeHao magazine

Check out this excerpt from In the Land of Pagodas published in NeeHao magazine. It features a great section from our translation of Alfred Raquez’s first book: his description of a sumptuous dinner on a flower boat in Canton in 1898.

Read that here: http://www.neehao.co.uk/2017/04/in-the-land-of-pagodas-a-forgotten-tour-through-late-qing-china/

Then buy the book here: http://www.niaspress.dk/books/land-pagodas

Interview with WLG and PB on China Underground

Here’s nice a interview with myself and Paul about our translation of Alfred Raquez’s first book, In the Land of Pagodas.

Check out the interview here in English: https://china-underground.com/2017/04/13/curious-case-mr-alfred-raquez-parisian-fugitive-run-far-east/

And here in Italian: https://cinaoggi.it/2017/04/13/la-curiosa-storia-alfred-raquez-un-francese-fuga-estremo-oriente-allinizio-del-secolo-scorso/

Thanks to the good folks over at China Underground for their awesome support!!

 

Land of Pagodas on China Underground!!

You can feel us penetrating the Great Wall here: http://china-underground.com/2017/04/03/in-the-land-of-the-pagodas/

It’s  a cool newswebsite in English about Chinese topics that don’t have to do with Xi, trade, Trump, or the South China Sea, so click around once you get there.

Jakarta traffic in supermacet

Called macet  (sounds like the first part of “machete”) in local patois, Jakarta is now considered one of the worst cities in the world for traffic.

I drive here everyday on a little Honda Vario scooter, but I’ve never seen anything like this…

That’s a four way junction of two four-lane roads. The car trying to turn right is about mid-way through the junction. The tailback of motobikes on my side–which completely filled the oncoming lane–was at least a kilometer.

This goat-fuck went on for about 20 minutes. I turned off my motor and so did most other riders.

Then ONE GUY fixed this mess. He was a big burly dude with a jacket and a do-rag (under that broiling sun!), and he waded into the middle of his thing and by swearing and shoving and generally being a boss-man, got the motorbikes moving and unclogged the passage. This dude wasn’t a cop (there was none to be seen) but just a neighborhood guy with some balls and brawn and a short fuse…also a good sense of spatial geometry.

Whatever your commute, it’s probably PLAIN VANILLA compared to a daily run in Indonesia’s megacity!

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