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Deng Xiaoping (1904–97)

Subject History

Place Eastern Asia » China

Period 1000 - 1999 » 1900-1999

DOI: 10.1111/b.9780631209379.1999.x


Chinese politician. The eldest son of a wealthy landowner in Sichuan province, he went to France in 1920 as awork-study student. He met zhou enlai there and joined the French branch of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) in 1924. In 1926 he studied in Moscow before returning to China. Deng then joined mao zedong in the Jiangxi Soviet (1928–34) and became part of his inner circle. He took part in the Long March (1934–5), when the communists were forced north to the safety of Yanan by the nationalists under jiang jieshi (Chiang Kai-shek) and was a political commissar in the communist armies which fought in the Sino-Japanese War (1937–45) and the chinese civil war (1946–9). After the communist victory he took control of the South-west region of China. He was transferred to Beijing in 1952 and then rose rapidly, partly owing to his long association with Mao, in the CCP and state: VicePremier 1952, Minister of Finance 1953, General Secretary of the CCP 1956, a member of the Politburo 1955. Deng joined liu shaoqi in rejecting Mao's ‘cult of personality’. He opposed the hundred flowers movement (1956) and was responsible for the savage Anti-Rightist campaign which followed it, when between 400,000 and 700,000 intellectuals were persecuted. After the failure of the great leap forward (1958–60) he co-operated with Liu in reversing its policies by giving to production teams rather ... log in or subscribe to read full text

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