World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article
 

Wang Hongwen

Wang Hongwen
Chinese 王洪文

Wang Hongwen (December, 1935 – August 3, 1992), was a Chinese labour activist and politician who spent most of his career in Shanghai. He was an important political figure during the Cultural Revolution (1966–76). He was the youngest member of the far-left political clique called the "Gang of Four." During the Cultural Revolution, Wang rose from a member of the working class to become one of the foremost members of national leadership of the Communist Party of China.

At the pinnacle of his power he was the Vice-Chairman of the CCP, and ranked third in the Communist Party's hierarchy. Following Mao's death in 1976, Wang Hongwen was arrested and charged with "counterrevolutionary activity," then sentenced to life imprisonment in 1981.

Biography

Wang was born in a village outside of Shanghai Commune in January 1967, and was elected to the Ninth Central Committee of the CCP.[1]

At the 9th National Congress of the Communist Party of China, Wang was elected a member of the Central Committee. Following the Lin Biao incident, Wang was put in charge of the investigation into the case in the Shanghai area, reporting directly to Mao. At the Tenth National Congress of the CCP in 1973, Wang Hongwen was elevated to Vice Chairman in the Central Committee, and a member of the Politburo Standing Committee, making him the third-highest-ranking member of the CCP, behind Mao Zedong and Zhou Enlai.[1] All signs pointed to Wang being trained as Mao's successor.

Wang was rumored to be slated to become Premier after then-Premier Zhou Enlai's death. However, Hua Guofeng was chosen to succeed Premier Zhou in January 1976. Wang was an important player during and after the death of Chairman Mao Zedong, and was the masters of ceremonies for his funeral service on national radio on September 18, 1976. He was arrested in what was essentially a coup planned by Hua and General Ye Jianying for his participation in the Gang of Four during the Cultural Revolution in October 1976. Wang was tried and sentenced to life imprisonment in 1981.[2] He died of liver cancer in a Beijing hospital on August 3, 1992 at the age of 56.

Wang was one of the youngest members of the Politburo Standing Committee in the post-revolution Communist Party, having joined the body at a mere 37 years of age. In fact, he was the same age as some PSC members who took office even after the turn of the century, such as Luo Gan (served on the PSC between 2002 and 2007), who was also born in 1935.

References

  1. ^ a b c d Jian, Guo; Song, Yongyi; Zhou, Yuan (2009). The A to Z of the Chinese Cultural Revolution. Lanham, MD: Scarecrow Press. pp. 308–309.  
  2. ^ a b Kristof, Nicholas. "Wang Hongwen Dies in Beijing; A Member of the 'Gang of Four'" The New York Times, August 5, 1992. Accessed September 27, 2014. http://www.nytimes.com/1992/08/05/world/wang-hongwen-dies-in-beijing-a-member-of-the-gang-of-four.html.
This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and USA.gov, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for USA.gov and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
 
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
 
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.
 


Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from Project Gutenberg are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.