Lizzie Burns, an illiterate Irish woman who married Engels shortly before her death

Four words in a newspaper review of a 400-page biography. That was all it took to send Gavin McCrea on the trail of Lizzie Burns, a cotton worker fro(...)

Maoist cult leader Aravindan Balakrishnan: threatened women  with what he called a supernatural mind-control machine which he named “Jackie”. Photograph:  Hannah McKay/PA Wire

A Maoist cult leader, convicted of raping and beating his brainwashed British female followers and keeping his own daughter a fearful prisoner for mor(...)

Placards showing missing bookseller Lee Bo (left) and his associate Gui Minhai (right)  outside the China liaison office in Hong Kong. Photograph: Philippe Lopez/AFP/Getty Images

The wife of missing Hong Kong bookseller Lee Bo, who vanished last month and was believed to have been taken across the border by Chinese security off(...)

The statue reportedly cost nearly three billion yuan (€427,000). Photograph: Reuters

A giant golden statue of the late Communist Party leader, Mao Zedong, erected in the remote Chinese countryside, has been torn down, removed almost a(...)

A huge statue of Chairman Mao Zedong under construction in Tongxu county in Kaifeng, central China’s Henan province. Photograph: AFP/Getty Images

Chinese villagers have built a giant golden statue of the late Communist Party leader and founding father of the People’s Republic of China, Mao Zedon(...)

Zhou Qunfei: billionaire comes from a farming background

Chairman Mao Zedong is often quoted for saying “women hold up half the sky” but going by Hurun Report’s latest survey, the world’s second largest econ(...)

The first part of the 1937 letter written by Communist leader Mao Zedong to Clement Attlee of the Labour Party. Photograph: Sotheby’s/PA Wire

A 1937 letter written by Communist leader Mao Zedong to Clement Attlee of the Labour Party, later British prime minister, has gone under the hammer fo(...)

Golf in the rough

‘Crackdown on golf and gluttony,” the headlines announced with irresistible alliteration. One Chinese paper refered to it as the “green opium”, and th(...)

Chinese president Xi Jinping’s speech is detailed in its praise for traditional modes of art and critical of contemporary art, which he feels lacks morality and depth. Photograph: Bloomberg

At first glance, it looks like an editorial oversight. Chinese official state media publishes, in full, the text of a speech given by president Xi Jin(...)

Billionaire Li Ka-shing: his focus is moving towards developed markets such as Europe. Photograph: Lam Yik Fei/Bloomberg

The investor known as “Superman”, Asia’s richest man Li Ka-shing, normally lets adverse comment wash over him, but last week the 87-year-old Hong Kong(...)