Europe

Conflict & Justice

Men of Arab descent not finding Germany as welcoming as they used to

After reports of women being harassed and groped on the streets of Cologne, Germany, on New Year's Eve, mostly by men of Arab descent, German officials are promising changes. They've beefed up the police presence in public areas and vowed to deport migrants convicted of serious crimes. And Arab and Muslim migrants in Germany say the welcoming atmosphere is starting to change.

Arts, Culture & Media

That picturesque barn in the Swiss countryside might be a former Army bunker

How would you like to stay the night in a former military bunker in Switzerland? With the threat of foreign invasion relatively unlikely in the modern peaceful era of Europe, thousands of military bunkers and fortresses in Switzerland have been decommissioned and over the years put to commercial use — as everything from hotels to cheese factories.

Arts, Culture & Media

After a fracas over French 'male-only' prize for graphic novelists, world takes note of women artists

For 43 years, graphic novelists and comics artists have gathered in the French town of Angoulême to celebrate their burgeoning art and award prizes. But in all that time, only one woman has won the Grand Prix, a "lifetime achievement" award. After this year's list of 30 nominees contained no women at all, an uproar ensued.

Lifestyle & Belief

Does France's 'burqa ban' protect — or persecute?

In 2004, France banned the wearing of all conspicuous religious symbols in grade schools. Then, in 2010, France enacted the so-called "burqa ban," making it illegal for Muslim women to wear the traditional face and body covering in public. These rules, based in France’s extreme separation of church and state, have stirred debate over whether France is protecting secularism or stifling religious freedom.

Health & Medicine

A new book recounts the forgotten history of autism

We tend to think of autism as a modern disease — “the unique disorder of our uniquely disordered times," as author Steve Silberman writes in a new book. But that idea, he says, doesn't quite square with the facts. The real history of autism is less known and more tragic — both for the people who suffered from the disorder and for the doctor, Hans Asperger, whose pioneering ideas about autism were long neglected.