China Choice Board
4 Modernizations, Deng Xiaoping, and the Tienanmen Massacre
Deng Xiaoping is one of the most powerful Chinese figures in the People's Republic of China. He helped to modernize China after Mao Zedong died. Deng Xiaoping was born on August 22, 1904. He was the son of a well-to-do landowner. He joined the Chinese Communist Party while he was in high school and traveled to France and Moscow. He believed he could make the economy more modern and stable if China had invested in the 4 Modernizations, industry, agriculture, science, and national defense. The plan of modernizing china with the 4 modernizations was made by Zhou Enlai in 1963; Deng Xiaoping made a law so it was sure to happen. He also passed the “One Child Policy” in 1980 to control China’s rapidly growing population. In 1989, when the Soviet Premier Mikhail Gorbachev visited Tiananmen Square, there were widespread protests and marches and shut down the government. After hesitation, Deng agreed to remove the protesters by force. This was later known as the Tiananmen Square Massacre, which killed hundreds, maybe thousands of protesters. He was faced with worldwide criticism but still remained in power. He increased the standard of living of China modernized their economy. He died at the age of 92 on February 19, 1997.