Splainer

Wednesday, April 28 2021


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Would this have happened if I had worn a suit, and a tie?... I felt hurt, and I felt alone, as a woman, and as a European. Because it is not about seating arrangements or protocol. This goes to the core of who we are. This goes to the values our union stands for, and this shows how far we still have to go before women are treated as equals, always and everywhere.

That’s European Commission President Ursula Von der Leyen finally speaking up about a diplomatic incident that literally left her standing. Earlier this month, der Leyen and fellow EU chief Charles Michel met with Turkish President Recep Erdogan. There were only two chairs, however, at the meeting—and both men quickly grabbed them, leaving der Leyen—who precedes Michel in protocol—awkwardly perched at a distance on a sofa. That small incident spoke volumes about male entitlement and knee-jerk sexism at the very highest levels of diplomacy. Michel did not apologise until earlier this week.

Big Story

The big debate over IPL

The TLDR: Is the daily parade of ball-cracking cricket a tasteless spectacle of excess amid great suffering? Or a valuable service to “humanity,” as the Indian cricket board insists? We take a quick look at the controversy over IPL’s bio-bubble of privilege.

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In today’s edition

Headlines That Matter

  • Casteist bully at IIT Kharagpur
  • A postscript to the submarine tragedy
  • Controversial human cell research
  • The first ever colour photo of Mars

 

A list of curious facts

  • Daisugi: the Japanese art of growing trees… out of other trees!
  • Why are women now shaving their entire face?!
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