The Bold And The Beautiful: Beauty Pageants Going Political

Beauty pageants are often associated with sexism and superficial showbiz. They are considered as silly competitions where bikini-clad women make starry-eyed appeals for world peace. At first glance, these contests might seem like something we should be attempting to rid ourselves of in this politically conscious #MeToo-era. However, recent changes

A year after its bid for independence, the future for Iraqi Kurdistan remains unclear

Iraq’s Kurdistan Regional Government passed a controversial independence referendum in September of last year. Internationally supported only by Israel, it was met with a blockade from all neighbouring countries and sparked a military invasion from Baghdad.  Due to these events, the dominant Kurdish parties are now turning against each other. Monday,

“Not my circus, not my monkeys”: Poland’s illiberal turn

There is a saying in Poland that goes “Nie mój cyrk, nie moje małpy”, which translates to “Not my circus, not my monkeys”. As a Polish citizen having lived abroad for most of my life, this mindset has been quite appealing in light of recent developments in the country. It’s

Russia’s Euro-vision for the future

From Finnish rock bands to Portuguese opera singers, Eurovision is the place where once a year Europeans gather and showcase their unique, sometimes strange, yet always entertaining music acts, and there is a level of mutual respect between countries that always shines through our television screens. This year Ireland’s entry,

The most political thing you can do is to follow your heart

It has never been easy being gay, a lesbian, transsexual or bisexual in Belarus. Despite recognising same-sex relationships homosexuality is rarely accepted by society as a whole. As such homosexuals, transgender people, and bisexuals are often encouraged not to speak up about their sexuality. Instead the community is forced to

Are young people going to change the world?

For decades, young people have been the catalysts for change all over the world. Protests against the Vietnam War and nuclear weapons as well as movements such as the Arabic Spring have all been pushed forward by the young generations. These movements tend to occur together with some core question

Iran’s ultimate choice – to keep or not to keep the deal.

Iran has long been dallying at the crossroads between reform and isolation. Four years ago, the country’s future seemed decided. That was when the nuclear deal, the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), was reached in 2015 between Iran, the five permanent members of the UN Security Council, Germany and

Iran’s new revolutionary generation?

Last month, Iranians celebrated the 39th anniversary of the Islamic Revolution which led to the downfall of the Pahlavi Shah Regime. However, prior to this, modern Iran itself experienced some protests, starting in one of Iran’s big cities, Mashhad, raising questions as to whether the next revolution will happen and