DBWI: No Xi Dynasty

Discussion in 'Alternate History Discussion: Before 1900' started by SealTheRealDeal, Sep 20, 2019.

  1. SealTheRealDeal Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2017
    The century long rule of the Xi Dynasty of Zhang Xianzhong and the half century of warlordism that followed it have been frequently cited as a demographic catastrophe for China, with the brutality of both the central government and the frequent rebellions devastating the country side, the loss of food caused by proscriptions against the cultivation of foreign crops (most notably potatoes and corn), and the loss of peripheral territory to neighbouring states, Japanese pirates, and European settlers.

    So, would this catastrophe be butterflied if Ming loyalists, the Qing, or the Shun won?

    What could China's modern population be absent this disruption?

    How would the rest of the world be effected if China wasn't imploded for so much of the modern era?
     
    Last edited: Sep 22, 2019
    LostInNewDelhi likes this.
  2. KingOnTheEdge Vive La Revolucion

    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2019
    The Xi dynasty was the last time china was united, in large part because the collapse was so entirely total, it was viewed as East Asia's fall of Rome. The Taeyang dynasty in Korea came to power pretty quickly and conquered most of Manchuria and the gulf to their south, and might be a sort of byzantium, but that's debated since they definitely put most power in their Emperors, and ensured there could be no child monarchs by making sure the heir is at least 25 by law.

    The reasons they fell are pretty complex, but the thing with Chinese dynasties is that they were like acid bubbles-they hurt to touch, popping one will probably hurt you as much, but they cant take much pressure because of their size and governance before they burst. One bad harvest and two weak emperors isnt normally enough to shatter an empire like it was for the han.

    But no Xi Collapse could mean that Europe doesn't look at east asia enough, meaning no French South China or. British Yellow River Company conquering south china. India would have drawn more attention and a single master might've come to power, instead of Britain in Bengal, Portuguese Deccan, etc.
     
  3. Dolan Lookin fer Gooby

    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2018
    Fall of China also cemented Korea (The Byzantium equivalent due to their Confucianism) and Japan (The HRE equivalent due to their federated Politica) to rise in the vacuum of Asian Power in North East and South East Asia.

    Yes, it's debatable whether the rise of Korea was propped up by Austrian Advisors and Spanish Silver as counterbalance to British and French attempt to conquer all China, but the result is the (admittedly self-dubbed) Second China by the Taeyang rulers, to differentiate themselves with the previous Joseon Kings.

    All while The Mitsunari Shogunate of Japan decided to follow up Toyotomi Hideyoshi's conquest of Formosa and the Philippines with Southward push to permanently dislodge Portuguese and Dutch East Indies, forming the so called Japanese East Indies (or Minamijima).

    Both Asian Empires has been largely successful in keeping Europeans away from their territories, but always fall short of their proclaimed goals (reuniting China for the Koreans, and took over The Pacific Ocean for the Japanese).
     
    SealTheRealDeal and Whiteshore like this.
  4. Whiteshore Defender of Myrcella Baratheon

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2016
    Location:
    Philippines
    Didn't it become the Zhuang-dominated Baiyue State post-decolonization? The Xi Dynasty's rule over South China resulted in the various non-Han peoples (the various Miao-Yao and Tai-Kadai peoples of the "hill country") becoming a majority in much of Southern China with Guangdong and Fujian being the sole exceptions to the trend of non-Han peoples being a majority in Southern China.
     
    SealTheRealDeal likes this.
  5. Whiteshore Defender of Myrcella Baratheon

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2016
    Location:
    Philippines
    OOC: Should this scenario be a wank for China's ethnic minorities as I was thinking of?
     
  6. KingOnTheEdge Vive La Revolucion

    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2019
    I think so? I cant really remember whose in charge, but since the bourbon fall French colonies have always been a sliding scale of crazy, with France being so unstable. for a time FSC were a Buddhist theocracy, then ten minutes later they were france again. Rn they're a communist puppet till France can get America to bail them out a fourth time.

    Ooc: yea I'd assume
     
    SealTheRealDeal and Whiteshore like this.
  7. Whiteshore Defender of Myrcella Baratheon

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2016
    Location:
    Philippines
    Don't forget the Cantonese (aka the local Han people) not being happy with being dominated by a bunch of "hill peoples" owing to how Guangdong is predominantly Han.
     
    SealTheRealDeal likes this.
  8. KingOnTheEdge Vive La Revolucion

    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2019
    Honestly Japan is basically America's slice, especially after Perry's War. They don't trade with Britain or Russia (our rivals in the area) and take most of our excess resources. In exchange we keep the others away and point out how cruel they are. Sound like any other empires you know?

    Korea can make the arguement of being a second china (though considering Britain claims Alfred I currently holds the mandate to keep their own subjects quite they probably shouldnt) especially after the Li Modernization Period. But they also have the limits of Korea and Manchuria simply dont have the raw manpower of other parts of asia. In a war with Britain or Japan, they'd get decimated. They'd probably win against Russia, since the Empire is so massive Russia cant send their best troops to the front before they're dead troops.
     
    SealTheRealDeal, Dolan and Whiteshore like this.
  9. Dolan Lookin fer Gooby

    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2018
    Yeah, it goes both ways that the Jacksonian Imperial Guards were made exclusively of Japanese Samurai, and the Ishida Shogunate Guards were all American Mariners.

    Aside of several skirmishes during the Perry's War over Hawaii, the Two Empires has been content on sitting on their respective sides at the Pacific. Sure, American Empire has the economic and industrial upper hand that they practically control Japanese Industries. But Japanese troops lent to America, that has no qualms of killing rebellious American peasants, has been indispensable to crushing any sort of Republican Revolts against the Jacksonian Dynasty.
     
    SealTheRealDeal likes this.
  10. KingOnTheEdge Vive La Revolucion

    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2019
    So... how exactly did the Jacksonians wind up as the Augusti of America again? I'm in Oregon, i.e Britain, so it's pretty glossed over
     
  11. Dolan Lookin fer Gooby

    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2018
    It's rather weird for you to not knowing the fifty years of Chaos in North America that was American Revolutionary War...

    Sure, if only the original thirteen colonies agreed to just limit themselves and not attacking the remaining loyalist strongholds of British North America, they would likely maintain their original plan to have some sort of Federal Republic, but President Hamilton ordered invasion to "Liberate" colonies who were staying loyal to the British Crown... It goes as well as when someone pokes an already angry Lion.

    The later parts of the American Revolutionary War were one of the bloodiest conflicts ever happened in North America when we're talking about death toll as a percentage of the population. Britain managed to keep their hold at the North and the West, but unable, or unwilling to press on against the imploding United States, preferring to let the problem ex-colonies to descend into Chaos rather than taking direct charge, setting the stage for the rise of Andrew Jackson, who will later crown himself as the first Augusti of The American Empire.
     
  12. KingOnTheEdge Vive La Revolucion

    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2019
    I knew the us had gone and blown up, I just couldn't remember the context because to me you just described the War of 1812, and the american revolution isnt really taught as a thing outside of the initial republic with Thomas Jefferson and the articles of confederation. Though why that ridiculous government is ever discussed is really baffling, France and America both debunk it being applied to a country bigger than the Netherlands.
     
  13. Dolan Lookin fer Gooby

    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2018
    Louis XVI "The Kind" was the only ousted monarch who would be later begged on to take back the throne by the very same Population who overthrown him at first.

    He is a good man at heart though, and forgiving most Revolutionary leaders was cited to be the factor who paved the way for long-term French stability.

    Of course, aside from Marat, Robespierre, and their respective cliques, which he ordered to be burnt on the stake with their immediate family members because The Guillotine is too merciful for them.
     
  14. LostInNewDelhi Anarcho-Shaivist

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2014
    Hey everyone, as a reminder: a year ago the Forum Mundialis officially made the switch from "China" to "Hwa-hsia", a term which better reflects the nature of the region (a complex defined mainly by cultural interlinkage, with unstable political unity even at the best of times). It emerged as a neutral compromise between the pan-ethnic terms "Han" and "Tang", and academics in the field have already used it for years. It's been slow to break into the popular consciousness, but change has to begin somewhere.

    Also, regarding the Pai-yueh, the subject I did my Acharya thesis on:
    The question of who "dominates" Pai-yueh isn't so clear-cut as that. Sure, the various hill-peoples increased their demographic share in the countryside (at least, those parts not already settled by the estimated 1.3 million "New Hakka" migrants from the chaotic north) and the French encouraged the use of their tongues by district administrators to fray the bonds of Hwa-hsia, but the culture of the cities have always been defined by the people who, in Canton and Fukien, consider themselves "Yueh" as well. Indeed, they think themselves the best of the Yueh, combining Hwa-hsia wisdom with Southern ardor, and the millions of hill-people who assimilated to their ways after the Great Migrations to the industrializing Pearl Delta might well agree.

    The hill-peoples combined may be a slim majority (estimated at 52% by the last survey) and the Chuang especially are overrepresented in the military cliques from which so many French-backed postcolonial rulers have been drawn (much to the chagrin of . However, around a third of that 52% have partial Hwa-hsia ancestry, and 80-90% of the total population speaks some variety of Hwa-hsia as a primary or auxiliary language. Even the current Communist government, with its idealization of peasant communes' feudal liberties and insistence on "self-rule" for every ethnic group, has not challenged the use of Cantonese as the language of administration in near any d├ępartement with a "complicated" ethnic make-up... which naturally includes nearly every city of note in the whole country, from Meichow Capital District to forlorn Kweiyang.

    OOC notes:
    1. Acharya is the PhD equivalent offered by the parisad academies of the State of Hindustan, the latest evolution of the old Scindia tributary network.
    2. With the Qing never popularizing Zhongguo as a term for all China, it instead refers to the North China Plain and the British successor state based there.
     
    Last edited: Sep 22, 2019
    TheKutKu, Dolan and Whiteshore like this.
  15. Whiteshore Defender of Myrcella Baratheon

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2016
    Location:
    Philippines
    OOC: If you're wondering why Baiyue calls itself that, it is a situation akin to Belgium being named after an ancient group of Celtic peoples (the Belgae).
     
    Dolan likes this.
  16. LostInNewDelhi Anarcho-Shaivist

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2014
    OOC: I think it works really well. The term was devised as a catch-all for non-Han to the Empire's south, and that's pretty much what the Zhuang, Hmong, etc. are. But it's also flexible enough in meaning to include the Southern Han. And the name itself is a really succinct statement on the diversity (Bai) of the people, and what they all have in common (Yue). It's definitely the sort of name a state engaged in a grand nation-building project would pick.
     
  17. knightdepaix Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2018
    Wow? Zhang Xianzhong's dynasty -- if there is --- reigned for about a century... May I be told where is your source for that?
     
  18. Kaze Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2017
    Zhang Xianzhong was a brutal man - it is estimated that he killed / had killed one million people. It is likely he would not have a lasting dynasty. If he did not exist, it might bolster the ranks of the Shun and the Ming loyalists - but I doubt it would not stop the Qing's onslaught. The best option would be under Lady General Gao Guiying, who after the disappearance (or death - depending on sources) of her husband defection to the Ming armies - the Lady General fought alongside her former enemies against the Manchu and died in 1647.

    ==
    But let us say that Zhang does create a dynasty - It will make Pol Pot look tame in comparison. His and his heirs would not deal well with the west. I would expect the same disasters of the Opium Wars and colonization.
     
  19. SealTheRealDeal Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2017
    ooc: you see the DBWI in the title, right?
     
    VirginiaStronk likes this.
  20. KingOnTheEdge Vive La Revolucion

    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2019
    We should consider who could rise in the Xi's place. The Qing might be able to unite china, though they're infamous for their brutal armies. Though Qi Shuang Di would probably mellow as china consolidated like many other warlords. He expressed deep annoyance at the governing system, and much like the koreans after him, put all power on himself and a few nobles he personally appointed as nonessential subordinates and might've been able to hold china through a cult of personality.
     
    SealTheRealDeal likes this.