A man sells surveillance cameras at the main electronics market in Tienhe district, Guangzhou, in southern China's Guangdong province, on Aug. 8. EPA /Landov hide caption

itoggle caption EPA /Landov

The use of security cameras such as these, looking out over Tiananmen Square in Beijing, is on the rise in China. Critics say the government is using them to discourage dissidents. Ed Jones /AFP/Getty Images hide caption

itoggle caption Ed Jones /AFP/Getty Images

Japan's economy has been struggling for two decades and faces some of the same problems the U.S. has. Here, a man in Tokyo passes an electronic board displaying falling global markets. Yuriko Nakao/Reuters/Landov hide caption

itoggle caption Yuriko Nakao/Reuters/Landov

Shinzo Abe of Japan's Liberal Democratic Party marks the name of a parliamentary election winner at party headquarters in Tokyo on Sunday. Japan's conservative LDP stormed back to power Sunday after three years in opposition. Junji Kurokawa/AP hide caption

itoggle caption Junji Kurokawa/AP

Supporters hold up posters of Japan's former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe at a rally in Osaka on Thursday. Considered a nationalist hawk, Abe is expected to become prime minister for a second time after parliamentary elections Sunday. Buddhika Weerasinghe/Getty Images hide caption

itoggle caption Buddhika Weerasinghe/Getty Images

An NPR reporter recently was allowed to watch legal proceedings at Hongkou District Court — a rare opportunity for a foreign correspondent in Shanghai. Courtesy of Hongkou District Court hide caption

itoggle caption Courtesy of Hongkou District Court

Before it disappeared from the Web: Here's how People's Daily Online packaged its coverage of the "news" that Kim Jong Un is 2012's sexiest man. People's Daily Online (frame grab of a page that has now been removed) hide caption

itoggle caption People's Daily Online (frame grab of a page that has now been removed)

Authorities in Hunan province sentenced Tang Hui to 18 months in a re-education-through-labor camp after she repeatedly complained about the way police investigated the case of her daughter's kidnapping and forced prostitution. An uproar on Weibo, China's answer to Twitter, pushed authorities to free Tang days later. Frank Langfitt/NPR hide caption

itoggle caption Frank Langfitt/NPR

Wang Heying, 64, supports the new Communist leaders, even if she can barely name them. She says government policies have led street lamps, bigger houses and a TV in every home. Frank Langfitt/NPR hide caption

itoggle caption Frank Langfitt/NPR

Chen Guangcheng, a blind Chinese lawyer, made international headlines when he escaped house arrest in April. Now at New York University, he believes changes to China's legal system are inevitable. Frank Langfitt/NPR hide caption

itoggle caption Frank Langfitt/NPR