As Mao Zedong’s wife, Jiang Qing helped lead China’s Cultural Revolution with a Nietzschean philosophy of art. Through revolutionary operas and ballets, she sought a heroic consciousness that could transform society.
In 2022, Yamagami Tetsuya assassinated Japan’s former leader in revenge for his ties to the Unification Church. But Japan’s cults look to become more powerful as its social order decays.
Qian Xuesen helped China gain nuclear weapons and theorized Dengist cybernetics. Although a brilliant physicist, he made dangerous missteps as an advisor to power.
North Korea is regrowing its forests in a program of nationalist ecology. As environmental crises unfold, other countries will come to share its strategy.
Southeast Asia’s Golden Triangle is the home of criminal militias and corrupt politicians. With quiet Chinese support, one man has made it his empire.
The party cadre Jiao Yulu embodied a Chinese political culture with room for experiments and risk-taking. Xi’s turn to digital technocracy may threaten its survival.
While in Tokyo for the Summer Olympics, I instead saw the spectacle of Japan’s aspiring new elites.
To understand the return of China’s party-state, look no further than its love affair with ketamine.
China’s talented message board theorists crafted an industrial vision now embraced by Xi. Will their successors tear it all down?