Dylan Levi King

Dylan Levi King is a writer and Chinese translator based in Tokyo.

Has China got over the Japanese invasion?

39 min listen

For China, WWII started in 1937 with the Japanese invasion, two years before Hitler invaded Poland. Japan would occupy China until its surrender in 1945, in the process committing atrocities like the rape of Nanjing. This was the second Japanese invasion in fifty years. Yet decades after the war, when I grew up in Nanjing,

China’s war on effeminate men

A rectification notice from China’s state censor earlier this month included a peculiar admonition to ‘resolutely oppose’ effeminate men on television. The note stood out in the otherwise dry document. Its other targets — people with ‘poor morals’ or ‘lacking solidarity with the party and nation’ — make sense within Beijing’s authoritarian logic. But it’s

Ketamine in China: has the country got over the opium wars?

23 min listen

It might be an understatement to say that China has a difficult relationship with drugs. Most infamously, the opium wars of the 1800s saw British soldiers fight against the Qing dynasty to protect the British right to sell opium to China. When the Qing lost, it wasn’t just the sobriety of their people that they

Wang Huning: the man behind Xi Jinping

At the height of the Cultural Revolution, over a billion copies of Mao’s Little Red Book were distributed across the People’s Republic. This small pocket-sized collection of quotations provided the scaffolding for an era of communist purges. Utopians need theory. And while the Maoist orthodoxies of the last century have faded, China’s need for a