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LECTURE OUTLINE - Ruling from Behind the Yellow Silk Screen
Presented by - David Rosier
This lecture utilises recently available Imperial Records, plus contemporary interpretations, to present the life of one of the most important women in China’s Imperial history in a more balanced and positive manner than previous accounts from China in the early 20th Century. Empress Cixi’s rise from relative obscurity as a low-ranking Imperial Consort to Dowager Empress will be explored as will her strategy to preserve and strengthen Imperial rule whilst at the same time modernising China.
LECTURE REVIEW: By Ian Veroni
July 8th, 2019 Lecture:
Ruling from Behind the Yellow Silk Screen - Presented by - Mr. David Rosier
David Rosier took us on a wonderful historical journey and showed us many beautiful paintings of the Qing Dynasty. He is a speaker who knows his subject well and is passionate about it. He explained in a clear historical timeline of this period, stories of the Qing Dynasty and it's Manchu clans who ruled China for over 260 years. The fascinating details of the lives of these Dowagers was a look back into the past and societal norms of the time in China. These women were not allowed to address the court of men directly. Instead they were set up behind a Yellow Silk Screen with the Emperor seated on his throne in front. Cixi and Xian'ng were two astoundingly successful rulers who were surrogates for several Emperors during this period. Their journey, through the ages, as explained by David Rosier were insightful and showed the many biases which existed in the Western world about China (which one suspects is still the case today). Of particular interest were the many battles fought by each Emperor and reparation 'payments' made after these war losses. China has been made bankrupt by these wars on several occasions but each time it returned to prosperity. As Dynasty's rose and fell over time it showed the resilience of Chinese people to survive, eventually to become a Republic through the groundwork laid down by the Dowagers.