Editor's note

More than 90% of Africa’s cultural heritage is held outside Africa by major museums. So says a report commissioned by French President Emmanuel Macron. It recommends objects that were removed during colonial rule and sent to mainland France without the consent of their countries of origin be permanently returned — if the country of origin asks for them. Archaelogy Professor at the University of Bristol, Mark Horton, tells of the brutal and illegal means colonial powers seized African treasures that now populate lavish Western museums. And he explains what this report and its recommendations may mean if these cultural items are returned to their rightful place.

And in Indonesia, the #MeToo movement isn’t empowering women in the same way as in the US, Europe and Australia. As Iwan Awaluddin Yusuf writes, despite many women speaking up, victim blaming and patriarchal attitudes persist, and the media carries a lot of the blame.

Sasha Petrova

Global Editor, Australia

Top story

One of the plundered Benin plaques, at the British Museum. Shutterstock.

Returning looted artefacts will finally restore heritage to the brilliant cultures that made them

Mark Horton, University of Bristol

Colonial powers plundered the heritage of countries all over the world – restitution is long overdue.

The UGM rape case is a reminder that our priority should be to stand with the survivors of sexual assault. www.shutterstock.com

Victim-blaming culture holds back #MeToo in Indonesia

Iwan Awaluddin Yusuf, Universitas Islam Indonesia (UII)

Under victim-blaming attitudes, the survivors of sexual violence suffer from double victimisation: being assaulted and being blamed.

Energy & Environment

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Lifestyle & and Curious Questions

No, crying doesn’t release toxins, though it might make you feel better… if that’s what you believe

Leah Sharman, The University of Queensland

There are many theories around for why we cry and what may be happening in our bodies when we're doing it. But the research on all these things is fairly mixed, and culture plays a big part.

Curious Kids: What are some of the challenges to Mars travel?

Paulo de Souza, CSIRO

I've worked with NASA’s Mars Exploration Rover Project for 16 years. If you got yourself a ticket to Mars, here's how I'd advise you to prepare. And by the way, any mistake could kill you.