Reform - China's "Second Revolution “Reform of the Chinese Communist Party and its political activities, reform of government organization, reform of the economy, military reforms, cultural and artistic reforms, indeed, China's post-Mao Zedong leaders called for reform of every part of Chinese society. The leaders of the People's Republic of China saw reform as the way to realize the broad goal of the Four Modernizations (announced by Premier Zhou Enlai in 1975: the modernization of industry, agriculture, science and technology, and national defense) and to bring China into the community of advanced industrial nations by the start of the new millennium. Thus, the reform movement of the 1980s--which has been attributed largely to the insights and determination of Deng Xiaoping, the most important figure in the post-Mao Zedong leadership.
When Mao Zedong died in 1976, the Cultural Revolution era effectively came to an end.
China's leaders initiated China's "second revolution"--a comprehensive economic modernization and organizational reform program. Deng Xiaoping and his associates mobilized the Chinese people in new ways to make China a world power. Starting with the Third Plenum of the Chinese Communist Party's Eleventh National Party Congress in December 1978, Deng reaffirmed the aims of the Four Modernizations, placing economic progress above the Maoist goals of class struggle and permanent revolution. Mao's legendary people's communes were dismantled and replaced by a responsibility system, in which peasant households were given greater decision-making power over agricultural production and distribution. Farming families were allowed to lease land and grow crops of their own choosing. In the urban sector, factory managers were granted the flexibility to negotiate with both domestic and foreign counterparts over matters that previously had been handled by central planners in Beijing.
These changes had both political and monetary costs.... [continues]
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