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Japanese History, Chinese Democracy

Zhang Weiwei, one of China's foremost public intellectuals, talks to Rana Mitter about why his country should not become a democracy.

Zhang Weiwei, one of China's foremost public intellectuals, tells Rana Mitter why China will not and should not become a democracy and why what he calls The China Model has much to teach democracies themselves.

And as rising tensions between China and Japan continue to dominate headlines in East Asia, we hear from two young journalists, one from each country, about what they learned about each other at school and why mutual suspicion is on the rise in their generation. Mariko Oi and Haining Liu's documentary will be broadcast as part of a season about Freedom which runs on the World Service from January to April.

Finally the author of 'Bending Adversity: Japan and the Art of Survival' David Pilling and historian Naoko Shimazu reflect on Japan's historic ability to re-invent itself and why it needs that skill more than ever at the present time.

Available now

45 minutes

Chapters

  • Japan today

    Japan's ability to re-invent itself.

    Duration: 23:16

  • The relationship between China and Japan.

    Duration: 07:44

  • Chinese thinker Zhang Weiwei

    Duration: 14:00

David Pilling

David Pilling
David Pilling's book,  "Bending Adversity. Japan and the Arts of Survival" is published by Allen Lane.

Zhang Weiwei

Zhang Weiwei's book, "The China Wave: Rise of a Civilizational State"  is published by World Scientific. 

 

Credits

Role Contributor
Interviewed Guest Zhang Weiwei
Presenter Rana Mitter
Producer Jacqueline Smith
Interviewed Guest Mariko Oi
Interviewed Guest Haining Liu
Interviewed Guest David Pilling
Interviewed Guest Naoko Shimazu

Broadcast

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