Episode from the podcastHistory Accounts

21. Year of the Rat

Released Friday, 25th September 2020
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The new, young (and the last) Emperor took the Qing Dynasty throne.  He is most famously known by his Western name, Henry Puyi.  He would be Emperor for less than three and a half years.

What started out as a benign issue over the ownership and control of some railways in Central China metastasized into the Xinhai Revolution.  The Manchus badly managed both the railway issue and the reactions and revolution resulting from it.  The young Emperor abdicated in early 1912, ending the Qing Dynasty and Imperial China.  

Henry Puyi goes down in history as one of the most tragic and saddest figures in history.  After World War II, he was returned to China as a prisoner of war.  He eventually became a citizen of Communist China.

The year of the rat is a significant feature of this episode.  It also plays a role in Chinese culture.  It not only relates to the events that happened in China at the end of the Qing Dynasty.  I produced and published this podcast series in 2020 and during the global pandemic.  Also the year of the rat.  It may portend the future.

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22m 17s
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