The Sui Dynasty
In 220 A.D., after the fall of the Han Dynasty, China fell into a state of unrest and civil war. The region would be divided and ruled for over 350 years by a variety of warlords and local leaders. Then, in 589 A.D., a new emperor emerged from among all the competing warlords. This emperor was Yang Jian. Yang Jian started the Sui Dynasty.
After uniting all of the Chinese people behind him, Emperor Jian began again to build up the Chinese Empire. He ordered a number of new building projects to begin, including canals, roads, bridges and buildings. He also ordered that the Great Wall be repaired and strengthened. In order to accomplish these new public works projects, Jian used peasants in a form of forced labor that resembled slavery.
His forced labor projects made him quite unpopular with the peasants, and eventually led to a peasant uprising that would lead to the overthrowing of the Sui Dynasty in 618 A.D.