Matthew Clayfield is a journalist, critic and screenwriter.


What ‘communist chic’ really means

It is one of the most common sights on the streets of Vietnam. In Ho Chi Minh City and Hanoi, Da Lat and Nha Trang, tourists abound whose style might best be described as ‘communist […]


Twenty-first century punch

I had fallen in with an Emirates flight crew—British, Irish, South African, Korean—sometime after eleven. A Swedish stewardess, the eldest among them at a mere thirty-something, watched her charges’ increasingly drunken antics with a wry […]

Vietnam’s lowlands to go under with climate change

When it comes to climate change, Vietnam’s Ho Chi Minh City is one of the world’s ten most vulnerable cities. As a result, around 70 per cent of its urban area may experience severe flooding […]

Apr, 13

Keeping tourists safe in Vietnam: Calls for foreigners’ police force

Ho Chi Minh City authorities have again raised the prospect of establishing a tourism police force to make the burgeoning travel industry safer after a reported surge in street crimes. Just last week, one person […]

Mar, 22

“We have America on our side”: How times have changed for Vietnam

Americans are often pleasantly surprised, upon arriving in Vietnam for the first time, by how little the Vietnamese seem to care about the war these days. They might feel a pang of guilt or two, […]

Mar, 21

‘House of Cards’ is dark and brutal but no match for Washington now

Beloved of idealistic young things everywhere, The West Wing was always famous for the way in which it sought to imagine an alternative or counter presidency to that of George W. Bush, who came to […]

Mar, 09

Fran Bryson a traveller with a nose for social injustice

Brazil is in the news again. Just as FIFA World Cup celebrations two years ago were marred by popular protests in Sao Paulo, Rio de Janeiro and elsewhere in response to exorbitant public spending on […]

Mar, 05

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  • THE GRINDER's cold-opens are some of the best, most meta cold-opens I've ever seen. Better than the rest of the show, which I also like.
  • Also, over at @SBSNews, I explain why I'll never wear a picture of Che or Ho (or the Nike swoosh) on my shirt.
  • Is the king hit/coward punch "the punch for our times"? My piece for @Meanjin's blog.