The China History Podcast


  • Ep. 283 | The Taiping Rebellion (Part 4)
    After the Convention of Beijing was signed in 1860, the foreign pers weren't so sure about the Taiping's anymore. For the sake of preserving their hard-won gains in the Second Opium War, they hopped down off that fence and sided with the Qing forces. In this episode, we hear about Frederick Townshend Ward and the…
  • Special Announcement – Audio course on The History of Chinese Philosophy
    Hi Everyone, along with Avid.fm  I’m once again pleased to present to you a set of lectures that present an Introduction to the History of Chinese Philosophy.   In Part I of a two-part series of lectures I will trace the main events in Chinese Philosophy going back to pre-Confucian times in the early Zhou Dynasty…
  • Ep. 282 | The Taiping Rebellion (Part 3)
    After seizing the all-important city of Nanjing in March 1853 and basking in the afterglow of this victory, the Taiping leadership launches two military expeditions, one to the north to capture the capital, Beijing, and the other to the west.  In this episode, we’ll see how those two ventures panned out. Then in 1856, comes…
  • Ep. 281 | The Taiping Rebellion (Part 2)
    We’re back with more of the Taiping Rebellion. In this episode, we trace the Taiping Rebels as they make their way from Yong’an in Guangxi all the way to the southern capital of Nanjing. As they make their way north and east towards western Jiangsu they grow in numbers and seize great amounts of weapons,…
  • Ep. 280 | The Taiping Rebellion Part 1
    Now’s as good a time as any to finally feature this well-known, regularly requested topic from Qing history. This is arguably the pivotal event that got the dominos falling that led to the  Warlord Era and the later founding of the PRC. For anyone unfamiliar with the Taiping Rebellion, how it got started, and the…
  • Ep. 279 | The Hakka Kongsis of Borneo Part 2
    Laszlo picks up in 1818 with the Napoleonic Wars finished and the Dutch returning to their colonies to put everything back the way it was when they left. The struggle between the Dutch and the Chinese kongsis of West Borneo discussed previously continues with a fight to the finish in Part 2. The legacy of…
  • Ep. 278 | The Hakka Kongsis of Borneo (Part 1)
    The history of the Overseas Chinese in Southeast Asia is rich with all kinds of lesser-known or forgotten tales, like this one. A kongsi 公司 today means a company. But when Chinese immigrants from Eastern Guangdong and Southern Fujian were heading in the direction of West Borneo to engage in gold mining, kongsis were established…
  • CHP Special Episode | Larry Feign and The Pirate Queen Zheng Yi Sao
    Laszlo is pleased to present an interview with longtime Hong Kong resident, writer, and cartoonist Larry Feign to discuss his new novel The Flower Boat Girl.  The story is about Zheng Yi Sao, who was one of the most feared pirates in the early 19th century, and at one point, had command of a fleet…
  • Ep. 277 | Lin Yutang, with The Chinese Literature Podcast Duo
    In this China History Podcast episode, Laszlo teams up with Rob Moore and Lee Moore (no relation) from The Chinese Literature Podcast to explore the life and work of the highly influential writer Lin Yutang. Though rather unknown in our day, there was a time when Lin Yutang was the most recognizable name in the…
  • Special Announcement – Audio course on The Silk Road & One Belt, One Road
    Hi Everyone I’d like to announce that along with avid.fm  I’m pleased to present to you an introduction to the Silk Road – its past, present, and future. If you want to understand the history of the Silk Road and the implications of its modern-day successor, the Belt & Road Initiative, this course will equip…
  • Ep. 276 | Sanxingdui and Ancient Shu
    Just in time, we look at all the recent finds at the newly discovered six sacrificial pits at Sanxingdui. Archaeologists and historians are pretty sure all these exciting discoveries going back to 1986 at Sanxingdui, Jinsha, Shangwangjiaguai are from the ancient state of Shu.  This topic has been requested constantly throughout the years. I’m glad…
  • CHP Special Episode | Ian McCollum & Pistols of the Warlord Era
    In this CHP Special Episode Laszlo is thrilled to welcome Mr. Ian McCollum to discuss his new book, “Pistols of the Warlords: Chinese Domestic Handguns, 1911 – 1949.”  If you’re a fan of antique and historical firearms, you already might know Ian from his Forgotten Weapons YouTube Channel.  What poetry was to the Tang Dynasty,…
  • CHP Special Episode
    Here’s a brief intro to the life of Dr. Yuan Longping who passed away on. May 22, 2021. It was covered quite extensively last week in the Chinese and international press as well as in all the China newsletters.  But just in case you missed reading about him I wanted to post this short intro…
  • Ep. 275 | Henan Province (Part 3)
    We’re going to finish off this survey of Henan from Neolithic times to the 20th century.  In this episode, you’ll get a closer look at Zhengzhou and a few other noteworthy slivers of Henan history.  We’ll close off with the hard times that hit Henan in 1887, 1938, 1942, 1959, and 1975. If you never…
  • Ep. 274 | Henan Province (Part 2)
    The saga continues. More poking around Henan in Part 2. We’ll look at the Zhou Dynasty era states that made up the province in ancient times.  We’ll also focus on Luoyang, Kaifeng and Anyang.  If the multitude of Chinese names starts to overwhelm, go to the website at Teacup.Media and download a nice cheat sheet…
  • Ep. 273 | Henan Province (Part 1)
    This is Part 1 of a four-part series focusing on the Chinese history that happened in one of China’s oldest provinces. In Part 1 we get the lay of the land in Henan, discuss its mythical beginnings as well as the neolithic cultures of Peiligang, Yangshao, Longshan, and Erlitou. We also take the offramp to…
  • Ep. 272 | Eunuchs in Chinese History (Part 6)
    In this shortest CHP episode since 2011, we conclude the series that explored the lives of eunuchs in Chinese history. This time around we wind things down with eunuchs during the time of the Last Emperor Puyi in the course of his residency in the Forbidden City, Tianjin and Manchukuo. Then we look briefly at…
  • Ep. 271 | Eunuchs in Chinese History (Part 5)
    In this penultimate episode of the Eunuchs series, we finally make it to the Qing Dynasty.  After everything that transpired during the Ming, the Qing is tame by those standards.  From Dorgon to Daoguang things were pretty tame in the Qing. But once Empress Dowager Cixi grabs hold of the reigns of power, she allows…
  • Ep. 270 | Eunuchs in Chinese History (Part 4)
    Three of the Four Tigers, Wang Zhi, Liu Jin, and Wei Zhongxian get a once over this time around in Part 4.  Many historians agree these guys offered the most generous contribution to the fall of the Ming Dynasty. At least no emperors were captured in battle during their time in the palace.  But one…
  • Ep. 269 | Eunuchs in Chinese History (Part 3)
    The story continues. After wrecking the Han and Tang Dynasties, the eunuchs emerge again in the Ming as a particularly destructive force. In this episode we’ll also look at the Song Dynasty eunuch general and politician Tong Guan. Then we’ll look at the life of the first of the so-called Four Eunuch Dictators of the…