Deng Xiaoping and the Chinese Cultural Revolution

Topics: Cultural Revolution, Deng Xiaoping, Mao Zedong Pages: 7 (2631 words) Published: July 8, 2014
First Question: How effective was Deng Xiaoping as a leader? People can define an effective leader in many ways but how I define an effective leader is when a leader is able to overcome problems thoroughly, replicates success and having leadership qualities. A leader that can overcome thoroughly means that the leader is able to face his/her’s problems and solving it the best way he/she can. When a leader replicates success it means that the leader achieves their goal and that is what can define success. Having leadership qualities is when a leader has leadership traits (such as confidence, open-mindedness, perseverance) which makes them an effective leader. But not all leadership qualities or traits are required for the leader to be an effective leader because there are no such thing as a perfect leader but there are leaders who are effective by using the leadership traits that each leader has and develops. When a leader can overcome problems, replicates success and has leadership qualities. That shows that, that leader is what defines what an effective leader is.

Deng Xiaoping became a Chinese communist leader who ruled China from the late 1970’s until 1997. Deng Xiaoping needed to go through obstacles in order to finally become a leader. Firstly, during the Cultural Revolution (date) he lost all his power and was sent to Xianjing for three years to do manual labor, he was also branded as the ‘number two capitalist roader’ Mao did this to Deng Xiaoping because he saw Deng Xiaoping as a threat to his reform. On January 1975 when Zhou Enlai died Deng Xiaoping replaced Zhou Enlai’s role in the Party he became the person in charge of all the routine work of the Party and the state. But It was not over for Deng Xiaoping he needed to face a struggle with the Gang of Four. But finally on July 1977 he had earned enormous prestige in the Party and among the people and was reinstated again. When Deng Xiaoping became the leader, China was going through the change that was affected by Mao’s revolutionary years including the Cultural Revolution, which was Mao’s last reform for China. The Cultural Revolution caused China’s economy to collapse, it increased poverty rate in China, some people lost their jobs and education level decreased.

In 1981, Deng strengthened his position by replacing Hua Guofeng with his protégé (follower or trainee), Hu Yaobang, and together the economic reforms in China were introduced. Deng Xiaoping’s goal was to modernize China, improve China’s economy and globalize China. His act in order to reach his goals would be establishing the four modernizations, which Deng Xiaoping promoted in the speech he recited at a working conference of the Central Committee. The four modernizations were to modernize areas of agriculture, industry technology and defense. His reforms in order to attain the four modernization were based on capitalist models, such as his act of allowing free market, supporting foreign investments and increasing education level in China.

In the early 1980’s Deng proclaimed that education must be prioritized in order to achieve the goal of the four modernizations. The nine-year compulsory education was introduced and plans were carried out to eliminate illiteracy. This shows how effective Deng Xiaoping was as a leader because he saw the importance of education in order to continuously modernize China and to successfully go on with the four modernizations. This also shows another success from Deng Xiaoping because his education reforms increased the education level in China and it encouraged intellectuals who were discouraged when Mao was leading.

Deng’s supported foreign investments and tried to modernize the industries by implementing special economic zones in various regions (economic laws differed at those areas to make them more business-friendly). Businesses soon flourished in these areas and the industries were slowly getting modernized in these areas. Technology was also...
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