Masks in East and West: Conflicts, Bifurcation and Interpretation under the Pandemic—From a Semiotic Perspective

Article by Jiaxin LIU & Yuan-Hsun CHUANG. Abstract: The word “mask” has become prevailing and medical face masks have widespread increasingly since the outbreak of the Covid-19. However, at the beginning of the pandemic, the interpretation of wearing a medical face mask is extremely different and controversial in some Eastern …

Infrastructure and Its Dark Side

Article by LI QI. Abstract This article briefly discusses the role of infrastructure in the history of capitalism and the expansion of the state. Recent studies on infrastructure focus on its ontological perspective, arguing the ideological function that is visible upon the built network of infrastructure. According to Marxist theory …

不穩定的存在與想像國度:論新加坡電影《幻土》的敘事策略

Article by 江安淇(Anqi JIANG). Precarious Existence and Imagined State: On the Narrative Strategy of Singapore film A Land Imagined. Abstract Siewhua Yeo’s A Land Imagined (2018), the winner of Golden Leopard in the 71th Locarno Festival, is experimental film about migrant workers in Singapore; furthermore, the feature of this film …

Borders, Logistics and Unequal Lives: Webinar Summary

Webinar Summary by Lungani Hlongwa. Abstract: With the COVID-19 outbreak, people around the world were told to self-isolate, practise social distancing, and in some extreme cases, entire cities and countries were put under lockdown. It is fair to say that this pandemic brought much of the world to a near …

Beijing-Manila relations and the state of Philippine democracy under Rodrigo Duterte

Article by Fernan Talamayan. Abstract: The 2018 Memorandum of Understanding between the Philippines and China on cooperation on the Belt and Road Initiative ascertained a stronger infrastructure collaboration and interconnectivity in the transportation, telecommunication, and energy sectors. As I explained in an earlier publication, President Rodrigo Duterte welcomed Chinese aid …

Monuments, memory, and movements: How should the world reckon with a controversial past?

Article by John Lee Candelaria. Abstract: As statues honoring white supremacists fell in the wake of the anti-racist protests and the Black Lives Matter (BLM) movement, this essay asks: should monuments that memorialize a problematic past be removed or preserved as historical relics? To answer this question, the author contextualized …

Social Invisibility for Sale: The Birth of the “Convenient Subject”

Article by Weisyun Chen. Abstract: Convenience stores in Taiwan are unique spaces. They challenge the concept of alienation and make it totally outdated. Challenging the notion of alienation, convenience stores abstract not only labor-time but also the social relationships among individuals, as the value of labor. The convenience store is …

Of Convenience and the Concept of Citizenship

Article by Zikri Rahman. Abstract: The burgeoning presence of convenience store franchises around the world has been such an interesting phenomenon. Through this preliminary writing, the author is looking at the phenomena specifically from the perspective of Taiwan which has a  staggering number of more than 5000 branches of 7-Eleven …