The Tiananmen Square Movement

Written by Cassidy Ward

A Bit to Know About the Landmark Itself...

Tiananmen Square is located right outside of the Forbidden City in Beijing. Common people did not used to to be allowed in this city. The square is filled with multiple communist landmarks to exemplify China's government legitimacy. The name is derived from its gate way of heavenly peace.

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The Start of It All - April 15, 1989

On this sad day, China's Head of the Communist Party, Hu Yaobang passed away. He was working to make the Chinese government more democratic and he was loved by many people. His tragic death sparked a fire in many collegiate students. As they mourned the death of their leader, horrible things began to happen...

The Protests Began!

Students Taking a Stand - April 1989

On this same day of mourning, protests for democratic reform against corrupt government broke out. When Yaobang died, other communist leaders took charge, angering citizens.

Nearly a million people protested and these people consisted of workers, journalists, intellectuals, and civil servants alongside the students. At the protest in the square, some students when on hunger strikes to get their point across.

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What Did the Government Do? - June 3-4, 1989

Many government officials, like General Secretary Zhao Ziyang felt sympathy towards the students and their protests, while revolutionary and statesman Deng Xiaoping felt the need to use military force to end the protests.

This decision resulted in hundreds of casualties and many hurt or detained. After the forceful restraints, China's government acted as if this event never happened, brainwashing the population of any memory of the protests by treating it as insignificant. They now refer to this protest and massacre as "The June Fourth Incident".

Tiananmen Square: Chinese Government Censors History

Belief Systems in the Protestors

So we ask ourselves: "How did the participants demonstrate their belief system through their protests?" Obviously, these protesters had strong belief in the practice of democratic government. Furthermore, when China finally gets to the point of democracy, it is taken away from them by tragedy. This, evidently causing anger, led to protests and hunger strikes for the cause that means a lot to the million that participated in the Tiananmen Square Movement.