China’s rise to global prominence is a pretty good contender for the most important world development in the past 30 years. But now the question is how Beijing managed to be successful on the international stage, let alone how large that success is—with fierce debates between hawks and doves in the West and elsewhere.

In April 1942, at least half a million people fled the city of Madras, now known as Chennai. The reason? The British, after weeks of growing unease about the possibility of a Japanese invasion, finally recommended that people leave the city. In the tense, uncertain atmosphere of 1942, many people took that advice to heart—and fled.

Deng Xiaoping’s 1992 Southern Tour has become a milestone in Chinese economic history. Historians and commentators credit Deng’s visit to Guangzhou Province for reinvigorating China’s market reforms in the years following 1989—leading to the Chinese economic powerhouse we see today. Journalist Jonathan Chatwin follows Deng’s journey in The Southern Tour: Deng Xiaoping and the Fight for China’s Future.

Glynne Walley, translator of classic Japanese novel Hakkenden, joins us on the podcast again to talk about his second translated volume: Hakkenden, Part 2: His Master’s Blade. Unlike Part 1—which is all preamble!—in Part 2 we meet some of the fabled eight dog warriors and the Confucian virtues they represent: Shino, for filial piety; Gakuzo, for duty; Dosetsu, for loyalty. There’s betrayal, drama… and a lot of secret, intertwined family relationships.