In today’s society women do not have a very prominent role as there male counterparts. It seems as if men are looked upon as born leaders who should hold power. They look strong and confident. People feel safe that males will lead them in a strong, protective way. Women are looked at very differently. People see them as weak in heart and afraid of doing things in a forceful manner. This has not been true though if we look back to the eras of Wu Zhao and Empress Irene.
What does it mean when some one rules in a successful or effective manner? When a ruler runs his or her empire successfully it means that throughout his or her rein as king or queen everything ran smoothly. This means that no one would try to over throw him or her and that the people were happy. Effective is very different than successful. If a ruler is effective he or she understands what the people want. An effective ruler gives his or her people what they want and understands the needs of his or her people.
Women do have a harder time with keeping power. They have to be extreme with their actions and do whatever it takes. We see this in Irene’s and Wu Zhao’s case. Wu was very extreme and deliberate in her actions. She was ruthless. She made sure that no one would stand in her way when it came down to her power. She would have people killed and tortured just to keep herself where she was. She would have her own family members tortured so that the power would never leave from her. Irene acted a little differently. She was very conniving. Irene was not always on top. She had to work if she wanted to be the leader. She would come up of plans and plots to overthrow and have family members poisoned just to be on top. These women wanted and needed the power and it seems through these readings that they would do anything in their power to keep it.
I think the reigns of these two women were different. Wu Zhao ran her