South America

‘Cassava with White Peacock Butterfly and young Golden Tegu’, 1702–3, by Maria Merian

The 17th century painter who hacked her way through Suriname in search of insects

7 May 2016 9:00 am

Maria Sibylla Merian was a game old bird of entrepreneurial bent, with an overwhelming obsession with insects. Born in Frankfurt…

Life in Rio’s most infamous favela — where you have to pay the cops to arrest criminals

19 September 2015 8:00 am

When Stefan Zweig first arrived in Rio de Janeiro in 1936, he was overwhelmed not only by the city’s magnificent…

The war on drugs is stupid and counter-productive

18 July 2015 9:00 am

Rosalio Reta was 13 years old when recruited by a Mexican drug cartel. He was given a loyalty test —…

Peru's Indians are repressed with more efficiency than blacks ever were in South Africa

4 April 2015 9:00 am

In The Spectator of 21 March a column by Toby Young caught my eye. Discussing the pros and cons of…

One day the Condor and the Eagle will fly wing-tip to wing-tip

4 April 2015 9:00 am

The pub was disappointingly empty, so I took my first pint of the evening upstairs, where some sort of New…

Aimé Tschiffely with Mancha and Gato. The strongest emotional bonds he formed on his epic journey were with his horses

A horse ride from Buenos Aires to New York? No problem!

14 June 2014 8:00 am

Aimé Tschiffely was what I have seen in other contexts called a ‘doublehard bastard’. In the middle of the 1920s,…