Internal problems leading to the Collapse of the Manchu Dynasty
No single reason can be attributed to the collapse of the Manchu dynasty. However one may be forgiven for thinking that Empress Cixi was a key contributor and was the master of her own doom. What is certain is that the collapse was fuelled by Western Intervention, and compounded by internal dilemmas which in turn weakened the dynasty and left them unable to adapt leading to their inevitable demise.
There were many internal problems in China leading up to and after the Boxer Rebellion in 1899. After Emperess Hsien Fengs death in 1861,his primary wife Coxi seized power as their son was only 5. Cixi had many poisoned and killed who opposed her. She led a sheltered and materialistic life in the palace and was unphased by the state of her country. However Chinese internal problems started in the 1800's when China's society became devastated by Opium which literally created a nation of drug addicts.
Although after 1836 opium trafficing was considered a criminal activity, imperial officials in Canton were easily bribed. When Lin Tse Hsu took over in 1839 he shut down opium trafficing and stamped out corruption. With rebellion in Nien, and several muslim rebellions the last thing China needed in 1850 was the Taiping rebellion. It lasted 20 years and cost 30 million lives. Although it was an internal disturbance it was an odd mix of European and Chinese culture. Hung believed he had been sent to the middle kingdon to eradicate demons and demons worship. Furthermore he believed the Manchus were the primary propagators of such worship. He tried to spread communism but he was unsuccessful and his 'kingdom of heavenly peace' began to unravel before his very eyes. This rebellion did much to weaken the...