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Culture News

Last words: language of China's emperors in peril

Bejing - It was the language of China's last imperial dynasty which ruled a vast kingdom for nearly three centuries. But 71-year-old Ji Jinlu is among only a handful of native Manchu speakers left.

Lasers uncover hidden secrets of Cambodia's ancient cities

Phnom Penh - Unprecedented new details of medieval cities hidden under jungle in Cambodia near Angkor Wat have been revealed using lasers, archaeologists said Sunday, shedding new light on the civilisation behind the world's largest religious complex.

Athens to hide sculptures after busts go missing

Atenas - Athens is to store away dozens of outdoor sculptures after five brass busts went missing last month and a marble statue was vandalised, officials have said.

Tattoo lands Iranian actress in feminism controversy

Tehran - A popular Iranian actress has found herself at the centre of a dispute over feminism in the Islamic republic after cameras appeared to capture a "women power" symbol tattooed on her arm.

Bolshoi dancer behind acid attack freed

Moscow - A ballet dancer who masterminded an acid attack on the Bolshoi's artistic director has been released on parole after demonstrating "exemplary behaviour" in prison, a court said on Wednesday.

Cannes spotlight puts Iranian cinema centre stage

Tehran - As Iranian films and actors compete this weekend at Cannes attention is turning toward the country's thriving independent cinema sector which is succeeding despite tough regulations.

Next stop on Rome's new underground: Hadrian's barracks

Rome - Frescoed barracks which once housed the cavalry of the Emperor Hadrian's bodyguard have returned to light 19 centuries on, during excavations for a new underground train line in Rome.

Secrets of early Shakespeare theatre dug up in London

London - British archaeologists raised the curtain Thursday on a 16th century theatre which staged William Shakespeare plays like "Romeo and Juliet" and where the bard himself acted in "London's first theatreland".

Palestinian museum set to open — without exhibition

Bir Zeit - After nearly 20 years and millions of dollars, Palestinian leaders will on Wednesday cut the red ribbon to inaugurate a museum about their national heritage. Yet while the architecture is impeccable, the exhibition halls are empty.

Qatar's prized racing camels swim for success

Doha - Deep in the Qatari desert, Musharif spends his afternoons swimming in a large pool that doubles as a jacuzzi, just one of the perks of being a racing camel.

Trevi fountain runs red with 'blood' of persecuted Christians

Rome - The Trevi fountain in Rome was bathed in red light Friday, symbolising the spilt blood of persecuted Christians, in a grim makeover for one of Italy's most iconic monuments.

Spanish government in tug-of-war with family over Lorca archive

Madrid - Spanish authorities and the family of the late poet Federico Garcia Lorca, who was killed during the civil war, are engaged in a fierce battle over what to do with his archive.

Unseen Beatles footage released

Sydney - Never-before-seen footage of The Beatles "mucking around" in a make-up studio ahead of a television performance, shot more than half a century ago, was released by Australia's national film and sound archive Tuesday.

Unseen Beatles footage released

Sydney - Never-before-seen footage of The Beatles "mucking around" in a make-up studio ahead of a television performance, shot more than half a century ago, was released by Australia's national film and sound archive Tuesday.

Unseen Beatles footage released

Sydney - Never-before-seen footage of The Beatles "mucking around" in a make-up studio ahead of a television performance, shot more than half a century ago, was released by Australia's national film and sound archive Tuesday.

Sudan palace-museum recalls restive Darfur's royal past

Sheikh Habibullah - Tucked between palm trees and verdant lawns in the centre of Darfur's El Fasher, the palace of the restive Sudanese region's last sultan has become a rare focus of pride, 100 years after his death.

Myanmar's 'long-necked' women hope to turn tourism into homecoming

- Wearing a stack of bronze neck coils -- a sign of beauty for her Kayan tribe -- Mu Par dreams of a time when all "long-necked" women can return to Myanmar from Thailand where they are a tourist attraction.

Pakistan's Kalash fight for their identity with UNESCO bid

Chitral - Pakistan's smallest religious minority, the Kalash speak their own language and celebrate their gods through music, dance -- and alcohol, which they brew themselves in Chitral's plunging verdant valleys.

Mexico music video showing woman murder sparks outrage

- A man finds his lover in bed with another man. He pulls a gun, shoots the rival dead, ties up the woman, drags her to a car, stuffs her in the trunk and smiles as he sets it on fire.

Squatters barrier to protecting Delhi's ancient monuments

New Delhi - In the crypt of a 16th-century nationally protected tomb in New Delhi, a family is busy preparing a meal in their brightly painted kitchen that boasts a fridge and electricity.

Size matters at Japan phallus festival

Kawasaki - Japanese revellers carried giant phalluses through the streets of Kawasaki on Sunday to worship the humble penis and fertility in one of the world's most unusual festivals.

American becomes Japan's first salaried foreign ninja

Toukyo - A region of Japan looking to use "ninja" warriors to boost tourism has made an American man the first foreigner to draw a salary for joining the ranks of the stealth assassins.

Priceless tomes in Italy hold key to European identity

Rome - As Europe struggles with an identity crisis, a new exhibition in Rome looks at the birth of European culture through ancient manuscripts and the earliest printed books, including a first edition of Dante's Divine Comedy.

Trump effigy set ablaze in Mexico Easter ritual

- An effigy of US presidential contender Donald Trump -- a hated figure for many in Mexico -- was set ablaze in a contemporary twist on a Holy Week ritual.

Parachute jackets and bandage skirts: Fashion in communist Poland

Srodmiescie - An elegant former hotel employee remembers dyeing gauze bandages and turning them into ruffled skirts to remain fashionable despite chronic shortages in communist-era Poland.

Gaza rockers and rappers struggle to carve out a space

Gaza - Khamiss Abu Shaban's band would love to wow the kinds of crowds seen elsewhere, but in Hamas-run Gaza they struggle to find venues and instruments, let alone get permission to play.

U.S. tourists seek preserved Cuba — and Cubans seek change

Havana - American Sue Pemberton rushed to Havana to experience authentic Cuba before the communist island gets swamped by capitalism. The only problem: millions of other foreigners had exactly the same idea.

Cartoon Henry Kissinger drafted in to praise China's Xi

Bejing - The latest recruit to China's cartoon propaganda videos is an animated Henry Kissinger lauding President Xi Jinping.

'Monday Afternoon Fever' in South Korea's old-age discos

Seoul - As the mercury outside plunges to minus 10 degrees on an ice-cold Monday afternoon, the dance floor inside the Kukilgwan Palace is packed with grey-haired Korean couples moving to the rhythms of high-volume disco.

Heartbreak as historic Hong Kong village demolished

Hong Kong - A 650-year-old urban walled village in Hong Kong -- the last of its kind -- will be destroyed to make way for development in what critics say is another nail in the coffin for the city's cultural heritage.
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A local dove enjoying some  Mythos  Hellenic lager. The street life of Athens is incredibly lively a...
A local dove enjoying some "Mythos" Hellenic lager. The street life of Athens is incredibly lively and vibrant.
The six-story archive building of the City of Cologne  collapsed on 3 March 2009  comes to life agai...
The six-story archive building of the City of Cologne, collapsed on 3 March 2009, comes to life again at the Berlin's Martin-Gropius-Bau Museum.
Toronto s cultural diversity is shown in many different forms across the city.
Toronto's cultural diversity is shown in many different forms across the city.
A quaint  Kafeneio  (Καφενειο: cafe) on the incline to the Acropolis. Just what the doctor o...
A quaint 'Kafeneio' (Καφενειο: cafe) on the incline to the Acropolis. Just what the doctor ordered!
Vietnamese Cultural Festival 2010 in Berlin
Vietnamese Cultural Festival 2010 in Berlin
Book cover photo of Henry Jenkins book  Convergence Culture
Book cover photo of Henry Jenkins book, Convergence Culture
View down the quiet street of Αλριανου from the Kafeneio.
View down the quiet street of Αλριανου from the Kafeneio.
German rock band Rammstein in concert in Milan on February 24  2005
German rock band Rammstein in concert in Milan on February 24, 2005
Wikimedia
Toronto s cultural diversity is shown in many different forms across the city.
Toronto's cultural diversity is shown in many different forms across the city.
Toronto s cultural diversity is shown in many different forms across the city.
Toronto's cultural diversity is shown in many different forms across the city.
These excavations are sprinkled all over Athens. Of course it must be expected that an ancient city ...
These excavations are sprinkled all over Athens. Of course it must be expected that an ancient city such as Athens has existed on it's present site for thousands of years. Not sure how the residents feel about having skyscrapers being built on top of their homes...
A Modern Athenian Horizon.
A Modern Athenian Horizon.
2012 Newport Beach Film Festival - Latino Showcase
2012 Newport Beach Film Festival - Latino Showcase
A gold funerary mask of the Sican Culture.
A gold funerary mask of the Sican Culture.
Rosemania, Wikimedia
Aga Khan s collection for the first time in Berlin - Martin-Gropius-Bau Museum
Aga Khan's collection for the first time in Berlin - Martin-Gropius-Bau Museum