Brianna R. Smith
Cixi the Empress Dowager
A major fault the country of China continuously experienced was having poor leaders at critical times. For years the leaders of China thrived from the self-sustaining country, but the pretentiousness led to the idea China was the center of the world. This false ideology caused a lag in the full development of the country, and China fell far behind the rest of the world in terms of military, technology, and government. By far one of the most devastating, but influential people who contributed to the history of the Chinese was a woman by the name of Cixi. Before we delve into the rule of Empress Cixi we have to understand her life and how she became a woman of such prestige and influence. Cixi was a product of a marriage between a lowly ordinary official Yehenara Huizheng and Lady Fuca. Born on November 29, 1835 no one could ever imagine this baby would be considered the most strategic and formidable women in history and to be famed for her beauty, femininity, and charm. Her parents were a part of the ruling minority in Manchu society, and although this meant a nice lifestyle, she wanted so much more in her future. As the eldest daughter Cixi recounts her early life as hard and enduring, she is quoted “Ever since I was a young girl, I had a very hard life. I was not happy with my parents, as I was not their favorite. My sisters had everything they wanted, while I was, to a great extent, ignored altogether.” Cixi longed for attention and approval from other around her. The treatment she endured as a young child was the motivation to rise above her peers and become a woman of power and substance. Made to work in the house and watch after her younger siblings Cixi took to her studies very seriously. She was almost always alone and knew she had to leave home as soon as possible. Around the age of thirteen, Cixi’s parents decided it was a good idea to offer their daughter for...
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