Stages of History | Tiananmen Square


Tiananmen Square, the geographic locus of power in China, has served as the stage for many critical events in the history of modern China: the founding of the People's Republic of China, the celebrations of the victories of socialism in the 1950s, the massive rallies of the Cultural Revolution, the crushing of the 'Gang of Four,' and the protest movement of 1989, to name but a few. Within this massive area— the largest public space in the world— the cult of the Chinese Communist revolution, its dead martyrs, its major symbols and historical highlights, are encoded in brick, marble and stone. Its buildings represent every facet of official life and give concrete form to the charisma of the state, its ceremonies and its view of history.

View a short video clip showing the construction of Tiananmen Square in the 1950s.

Photograph of rally on Tiananmen Square

Tour of Tiananmen Square:

The Gate of Heavenly Peace | The Great Hall of the People | The Monument of the People's Heroes (Martyrs' Monument) | The Museum of History and the Revolution | Mao's Mausoleum


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