Meridian Reads: Here’s What’s Happening



Happy Sunday, Meridian Readers! We hope your weekend has been relaxing, rejuvenating and maybe even a little fun. It’s week two of #MeridianReads and we’ve compiled everything you’ll need to know to ace your Monday morning small talk. Grab a coffee, grab a seat and check out this week’s must-knows.

High-Level US Visits to Taiwan Mark 40 Years of Unofficial Ties

Publication: The Diplomat | By Nick Aspinwall

  • Taiwan Officials say the country will continue to welcome officials from the United States to the island as the two countries commemorate the 40th anniversary of the Taiwan Relations Act (TRA), passed way back in 1979. Wonder if they played some Billy Joel to celebrate?
  • Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen welcomed U.S. Deputy Assistant Secretary for Trade Policy David Meale to a banquet at the American Institute of Taiwan; Meale said the US “will remain steadfast in all of its commitments to Taiwan.”
  • The bilateral relationship between Taiwan and the US will again be under watch as Tsai (who’s facing a tough re-election in January) touts her administration’s closeness to the US as a foreign policy success story.

What’s Left of Notre-Dame’s Art?

Publication: The Cut | By

  • By now you’ve heard about the destructive fire that swept through Paris’s beloved Notre-Dame last week; now it’s time to find out what survived.
  • Reporters at the scene said the parts of the cathedral that date back to the 12th and 13th centuries have been lost, as well as the three iconic rose windows. But don’t despair — plenty of treasured pieces remain intact.
  • Such as… a reliquary that holds the crown of thorns, three Easter relics, Nicolas Coustou’s sculpture Descent From the Cross, Jean Jouvenet’s painting The Visitation, Antoine Nicolas’s painting Saint Thomas Aquinas, Fountain of Wisdom and a great organ constructed during the 13th century. C’est la vie.

PS: find our condolences to those affected by the fire here 

Cities Will Determine the Future of Diplomacy

Publication: Foreign Policy | By

  • The UN predicts that by 2050, two-thirds of the world’s population will live in cities, and urban centers are already generating of 70% of the global GDP.
  • The world’s toughest problems (such as…climate change, refugee resettlement, income inequality) typically concentrate in cities, and the most promising solutions are emerging from their inclusive politics.
  • Cities are undergoing reviews at the UN of their progress on the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals. Because the Trump administration is not engaging in this endeavor, US cities are working toward a more sustainable and inclusive future by taking steps to advance and implement the goals on their own.

Pssst: the full article delves into the role of state government on the world stage, check out this recap on a conversation we had about that