37: Empress Dowager Cixi, part one

OK this is a major episode, so get ready for the twists and turns of a truly unforgettable saga. Cixi was born to a Manchu family in China in the 19th century and, as a teen, was selected to join the emperor’s harem of concubines. The emperor mostly doesn’t matter (spoiler: none of the emperors in this saga do), because what’s most important is that in the harem she met her ride or die best friend forever, Ci’an. And what they accomplished together is truly breathtaking, changed history, and is also the cliffhanger of this week’s episode.

Recommended podcasts to learn more about Asian history:

Asian American History 101

With Chinese Characteristics

Support Vulgar History on Patreon

Get merch at http://vulgarhistory.store – use code TITSOUT for free U.S. shipping or TITSOUT10 for 10% off your order

References:

Empress Dowager Cixi: The Concubine Who Launched Modern China by Jung Chang

Women In World History: A Biographical Encyclopedia

Vulgar History is an affiliate of Bookshop.org, which means that a small percentage of any books you click through and purchase will come back to Vulgar History as a commission. Use this link to shop there and support Vulgar History.

Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices