What led to the uprising at Tiananmen square?

1 Answer
Nov 8, 2016

The Cultural Revolution was finally over and changes in the top leadership made the people think that it was time for more open Government and increased opportunity for people.


Mao's Death in 1974 put an end to the diving force behind the Cultural Revolution. The momentum that it had continued on for years.

The last phase of the cultural revolution was the sending of the educated urban youth, those that provided the energy behind the Red Guards, were sent to the countryside to educate the masses. Mao likely felt they had served their purpose and they were now a problem. The cities were emptied of youth. They did menial tasks in small villages throughout China. In the 1980s they started to come back and resume there lives. Many never returned.

The Gang of Four was purged.

There was a time of economic changes and stability in the leadership after 1980. Earnings started to be different. There was inflation. Street vendors, shop keepers, and new businessmen began to make much more money than civil servants and factory workers. Consumer goods started to become available. There started to be a widening gap between the have and the have nots. Corruption started to grow and affect peoples lives. Opportunity still seemed out of reach for many.

What started as a smaller protest in Tiananmin Square grew to a disorganized mass of disaffected people in the shrine to Communist achievement in Beijing. Tiananmin Square is a large area with important buildings and statues in front of the Forbidden city.