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TOPIC: culture


In Denmark, Beloved Christmas TV Special Cancelled For Blackface Scenes

The director of the 1997 episode complained that TV executives are being "too sensitive."

If there’s one thing Scandinavians take seriously, it’s Christmas. And over the past half-century, in addition to all the family and religious traditions, most Nordic countries share a passion for what's known as the "TV Christmas calendar": 24 nightly television episodes that air between Dec. 1 and Christmas Eve.

Originally, the programs were strictly aimed at children; but over the years, the stories evolved more towards family entertainment, with some Christmas calendars becoming classics that generations of Swedes, Danes, Norwegians and others have watched each year as national and family traditions in their own right.

But this year in Denmark, one vintage episode has been pulled from the air because of a blackface scene.

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Le Weekend ➡️ Ronaldo & Messi’s Chess Buzz, Celtic Coin Heist, Adele’s Magic Trick

November 26-27

  • Forgetting Russia’s future
  • Kid-friendly courtrooms
  • Barefoot running
  • … and much more.
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Le Weekend ➡️ Rescuing Twitter Memes, Mondrian Record, Sniffing Wildfires

November 19-20

  • Privileged Kremlin Kids
  • Live from Lusail, Qatar’s city built from scratch
  • Happy 80th to the world’s most famous conductor
  • A baby elephant having some TV elephun
  • … and much more.
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Le Weekend ➡️ Lab-Grown Blood, Nam June Paik Retrospective, Baby Shark Nurse

November 12-13

  • Glued to Warhol down under
  • Growing blood in a lab
  • Dancing nurse in Kenya
  • … and much more.
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In The News

Le Weekend ➡️ Ghibli Park Opens, New Zulu King, World Ballet Day

November 5-6

  • Welcome to Listenbourg
  • Peru’s Avengers police
  • France’s funeral cargo bike
  • … and much more.
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In The News

Le Weekend ➡️ Musk’s Bird, Rescue Rats, Soulages Back To Black

October 29-30

  • Kadyrov's long game
  • Musk’s Twitter, to leave or not to leave
  • Rescue rats in the rubble
  • … and much more.
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In The News

Le Weekend ➡️ Truss One-Way Ticket, Wind Turbine 2.0, Rear-Ending Japan’s Oldest Loo

October 21-22

  • Ex-USSR unrest
  • Eurovision 2023: nul points
  • Pan Solo
  • … and much more.
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In The News

Le Weekend ➡️ Fuel Shortage Bots, Endometriosis Breakthrough, Best Fat Bear

October 15-16

  • Putin's nuclear pressure
  • COVID orphans
  • An endometriosis breakthrough
  • … and much more.
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In The News

Le Weekend ➡️ COVID Art, Bionic Pancreas, Doodle Home

October 8-9

  • What Lula needs to win
  • Why Xi won’t let Zero-COVID go
  • The world’s most extreme doodler
  • … and much more.
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In The News

More Than An Icon: How Elizabeth II Carved A Permanent Place In Posterity

September 10-11

  • Ukraine war spilling into 2023
  • Turkey’s silence on Uyghurs
  • French soccer star laughs off climate change
  • … and much more.
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FOCUS: Russia-Ukraine War
Hannelore Crolly

Baden-Baden Postcard: Haven For Wealthy Russians Reduced To Tourist Ghost Town

For 200 years, the Black Forest spa town of Baden-Baden has been the destination of choice for Russian tourists, with oligarchs shopping in the luxury boutiques and buying up swathes of property. Now Putin’s invasion of Ukraine has changed all that and the town's once-bustling streets are empty.

BADEN-BADEN — Some idiot hung a bag of cartridges on the door of the hotel, receptionist Juri tells us. He says it happened one night towards the end of February, shortly after Russia invaded Ukraine. “It had live ammunition in it,” he adds, shaking his head as though he can hardly believe it.

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The perpetrator must have had insider knowledge of the hotel world because who else would know that a nondescript three-star hotel in the center of Baden-Baden, a popular tourist destination in southwest Germany, was owned by a Russian family? That is why Juri does not want us to use his full name here or that of the hotel.

When Russia invaded Ukraine five months ago, the “most Russian town in Germany” felt the impact straightaway. The spa took down its Russian flag, and the town hall started flying a Ukrainian one.

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Shilu Manandhar

It's Time For Nepal To Face Its Cruel Menstruation Taboo

Nepal outlawed forced isolation for menstruating women nearly two decades ago. But the practice continues, threatening the ability of many women to lead a normal life.

SUDURPASCHIM, NEPAL — Earlier this year, at the beginning of March, Sirjana woke up with a bad stomachache. It was near midnight, and the village — clusters of houses, about four dozen or so, sprinkled on the side of a hill, separated by terraced fields — was still. As per custom, the toilet was located outside the house, so she drowsily stumbled out of bed to use it. That’s when she realized she’d started her period. She froze, unable to re-enter her house.

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