Of piracy, deaths, and medicinal wildlife parts in Asia — issue #3

Of piracy, deaths, and medicinal wildlife parts in Asia — issue #3

It’s been a really fruitful month for us, and we’re so proud to have collaborated with two different partners to shed light on crucial issues concerning Asia. Naomi collaborated with TRAFFIC - the wildlife trade monitoring network - to look at how traditional medicine practices and beliefs are fuelling the illegal trade in wildlife parts, even if some of the promised cures are questionable at best. Vinita likewise collaborated closely with Stable Seas - a program of One Earth Future - that analyses and makes recommendations on global maritime security - to shed light on the problem of piracy and armed robberies at sea in the region. The Straits of Malacca, a crucial lifeline to port cities in Southeast Asia, are also troubled waters, and we explain why that is the case. Another story we’ve been wanting to tell for a while now, is about death. An inescapable part of the human condition — how do different Asian societies prepare for the inevitable end? What do thousands of years of philosophy and religion in Asia tell us about life after death? Bella looked at several cultural practices and takes you a journey into life after life. We have many more exciting data-driven stories in the pipeline, and we’re so excited to bring them to life. If you have any ideas or story suggestions you think we should pursue, we'd love to hear it! Just drop us an e-mail at hello@kontinentalist.com!

Pei Ying

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The truths of traditional medicine and wildlife
For centuries, traditional medicines have used wildlife parts to treat ailments. But how much of it is substantiated by science?
How Asian cultures approach death
In certain Asian societies, it is not uncommon for people to begin preparing for their death in advance. What rituals do they perform for this purpose?
Find out in our new Medium series, "Conversations with the designers"!
Did you know that piracy and armed robberies continue to plague our oceans and seas? We collaborated with Stable Seas to visualise maritime security and terrorism in our latest story.

Why I wrote...the sea level rise story.

“Near my house, there is a path along the seaside that I like to use as a route for running. The thought that it could vanish by the end of the century frightens me. I wanted to do a piece on rising sea levels to help readers visualise its impact on major Asian cities, and hopefully spur further conversation about our future. The climate crisis is a real and imminent threat, and we have to be united in our resolve to face it."