Dan-Cristian Paduret, via Unsplash

“But veganism is an eating disorder!” snorted the fossil-fuel tycoon.

“How can something that makes me feel so good be bad for me?” asked the heavy-hearted vegan.

“I dunno,” continued the tycoon, now red in the face. “I’ve never done anything that made me feel good, as such.”

The vegan arched their eyebrow.

“Unless there’s money to be made, of course!”

Content warning: eating disorders

First of all, I should mention that this is by no means a recommendation that anyone suffering from some form of unhealthy eating habit should look to veganism as the panacea. …

Zhang Kaiyv, via Unsplash

“Are you even allowed to be gay in China?”

You’d be surprised how many times I’ve heard questions like this. Often, when people find out that I lived in China for a while, they’re shocked that I chose to go there at all.

The country has a pretty dark reputation among Western media nowadays, despite some progressive shifts over the years in China. While there are some potentially disconcerting subjects to debate, the life of Shanghai’s growing queer community isn’t widely reported.

So what is it like to be gay in China? Well, as with most things in China, the…

Daniel James, via Unsplash

There’s no gay rulebook. My god have some of us wished there was!

For most queer people, high school is one of the most terrifying experiences we go through. It’s the phase of life where people are discovering themselves, and often in the process, a lot of us who can’t find our voice are suffocated.

Oddly, that was never really the case for me. From quite an early age, I had always been aware of something that set me apart from the other boys I knew. …

Nathan Dumlao, Unsplash

Derek Chauvin was convicted of George Floyd’s murder. Not only was justice served, but a global movement with the aim of greater visibility and tolerance towards black lives proved it will not be silenced. Floyd’s calamitous murder stirred people all over the world, so let me tell you a bit about how I came to be so proud of my blackness in the past year or so, and what I think this conviction means.

Last summer, I read a book called Afropean, by Johnny Pitts. Pitts is a black, British author who grew up in Sheffield. …

Identity disjuncture. It’s a topic explored exhaustively in the academic world, but often overlooked is people’s everyday excavations. The disconnect that people of mixed heritage face is a sharp, dissecting sword that can sever. We need to talk more about this topic, even if it only affects a small number of people.

Between 3–4% of the UK’s population are registered as mixed-race, and less than 1% specifically as ‘Mixed White Black-Caribbean’, which is the official label the British government likes to foist on the brow of people like me. Growing up, I never really thought about the fact that I…

Do I still Get to Talk about Racism?

Jurien Huggins, via Unsplash

“You’re only half-black. Why do you care so much about racism?”

A friend once said that to me. We argued for a while; I got over it. But it made me dig deeper into how white folks perceive mixed-race people.

In some scenarios, mixed-race people are not given full recognition by either of our cultures, which, as I’ve mentioned in the past, can leave our identities a little disjointed, especially when young.

Although it’s not the focus of this article, I think it’s important to note that before certain watershed events in the last year or so, people of colour…

East Meets Dress, Unsplash

Migration can’t be pinned down to a handful of factors. The process requires so many agents and actors, that it is befuddling. In East Asia, migration remains a complex issue. The legacies of the former Japanese Empire, transnational marriage markets and the search for supposed capital overseas are all salient elements of the migratory process.

In the West, debate centred around migration is commonplace. But what is conjured in our imagination when we, ‘civilised westerners’ hear this word, is usually a harrowing journey. …

Clarene Lalata, Unsplash

In China today, the continuous, intra-provincial exodus of migrants constitutes the largest flow of moving bodies in the world. Under Mao, Chinese citizens were bound to their danwei, or work unit, which ensured that people worked close to their place of birth.

Along with the restructuring of this, and the loosening of state-sponsored migration after the 1980s, migratory flows have never been busier in China. Yet gender is often overlooked in this debate. Let’s take a look at how China’s enormous migration population, colloquially known as the liu dong ren kou, impacts the lives of Chinese women.

Remember when I…

Actually, I was just an intern. But that doesn’t detract from what I’m about to tell you…

Frank Zhang, Unsplash

In 2018, I started one of the most exciting ventures of my young adult life: an internship at Shanghai’s biggest lifestyle magazine. As someone with a huge passion for food and cooking, it was a dream come true.

China is known all over the world for its centuries, if not millennia of civilised cooking and eating habits. Really, when I try to compare it to what I know of British food culture, it’s humiliating.

And so, interning in the world’s biggest, and perhaps…

Ling Tang, Unsplash

Since the outbreak of the novel coronavirus in Hubei Province’s capital, Wuhan, the fatal pandemic has engendered panic and a halt of normality across the globe. In some regions, we are finally beginning to see the long-awaited return to life as we once knew it. Other places remain severely constrained by the ongoing turbulence of Covid-19.

My home of the UK has recently begun to re-open hospitality venues, and after a brutal and emotionally taxing third national lockdown, it seems that we are finally glimpsing the prophesied light at the end of the tunnel. The slow pivot to a semblance…

Tommy Gough

Linguist with an MSc in Chinese Studies. I live in North London, where I am writing a fantasy series and managing my vegan food Instagram.

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