Society

Former Japanese politician Yasuhiro Sonoda publicly drank half a cup of radioactive water that he claimed had been treated in October 2011. (Screen grab from YouTube video)

Chinese academic: Can we die from drinking Fukushima treated wastewater?

With the uproar around the Fukushima treated wastewater at a peak, Chinese academic Zhang Tiankan takes a look at historical and scientific facts that help us understand the risks and effects of drinking treated nuclear-contaminated water. Is the fear justified?
People participate in the 2023 NYC Pride March in Manhattan, New York, on 25 June 2023. (David Dee/Reuters)

Why first-gen Chinese immigrants in the US detest white progressive ideals

Issues such as gender diversity and environmental protection seem to be too abstract for first-generation Chinese immigrants in the US, who see these problems as having no impact on day-to-day life. US academic Wu Guo mulls over the reasons why this group of new immigrants, for all their desires to be part of the American education system, is a staunch detractor of progressive ideals that are part and parcel of the system itself.
A group of “diving grandpas” from Tianjin recently went viral. (Screenshots from Weibo video)

When Tianjin's diving grandpas stop diving

Tourism in China is still recovering following the pandemic, and some areas see a surge of tourists after going viral on the internet. One such place is Tianjin, whose claim to fame is a group of “diving grandpas” diving off the 6-metre-high Shizilin Bridge, despite signs prohibiting such activities. Sadly, they have declared that they will stop doing so. How long will other such ground-up activities last?
Children playing among two giant panda lanterns at the Sun Yat Sen Nanyang Memorial Hall, Singapore, in celebration of the Mid-Autumn Festival, on 28 August 2023. (SPH Media)

Chinese language: The ‘one language, two systems’ road ahead

Given its pluralistic nature, the Chinese language has taken many shapes over the course of history, with its written form and the associated dialects dictated by time and place. Meanwhile, the rise of China and its growing national power have led to the emergence of Chinese as an international language that transcends national borders. Eddie Kuo, Emeritus Professor at NTU, delves into the evolution of the language in the different Chinese-speaking regions.
Visitors at a job fair for university graduates in Hefei, Anhui province, China, on 4 September 2023. (China Daily via Reuters)

Unemployment woes abound even for graduates from China’s top schools

Even with a bachelor’s or master’s degree from top universities in China, graduates are facing a tough job market. While some are choosing to remain unemployed in hopes of better opportunities, others are exhausting all avenues to make a living, from taking the civil service examination to becoming "full-time children". Lianhe Zaobao journalists Li Kang and Zhu Yuxuan look into the issue.
A teacher hands a graduation certificate to a student at the end of a study tour in the UK last summer. (Photo provided by interviewee)

[Big read] Rich Chinese kids going on overseas study tours could worsen China's socioeconomic divide

In the first summer vacation since Covid-19 lockdowns were lifted in China, study tour operators are back in full force throughout the country. Interestingly, two extremes have emerged in terms of spending on such tours depending on region and family income. Against a backdrop of uneven economic development and unequal distribution of educational resources across China, will this polarisation aggravate its social stratification problem?
Items seized by the police from the homes of members of the "Fujian gang". (Singapore Police Force)

Property, nightclubs, collector items: How ‘Fujian gang’ lifestyles aided money-laundering activities

While members of the “Fujian gang” have made the news recently for their billion-dollar money-laundering case, less is known about their lavish lifestyles and the trails their clandestine activities leave behind. Zaobao senior correspondent Poh Lay Hoon reports.
Medical workers rescue a patient at the intensive care unit of Pengshan District People's Hospital, following a surge of Covid-19 infections across the country, in Meishan, Sichuan province, China, on 21 January 2023. (CNS photo via Reuters)

When heroes and the corrupt coexist: Rooting out medical corruption in China

Commentator Tan Haojun highlights the many grey areas that the people in white in China find themselves in, amid an all-out anti-corruption campaign in the medical sector. It may be unimaginable that the same sector lauded for brave work during the pandemic is under investigation for rampant corruption. The reality is that heroes and the corrupt coexist, and only by reining in those hungry for power and profit can the system start to rid itself of the bad hats.
People walk on the street in Taipei, Taiwan, on 25 July 2023. (Ann Wang/Reuters)

Will cross-strait civilian exchange exit from long Covid?

While international tourism and study can be a bridge towards cross-strait understanding and reconciliation, it can sometimes be deployed as a geopolitical gambit. Taiwanese academic Ho Ming-sho shares more.