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Yang Jisheng

Yang Jisheng

... was born in 1940 in Hubei Province. From 1960 he studies tractor mechanics at the prestigeous Qinghua University, in 1964 he was admitted to the Communist Party. When he graduated in 1966, the start of the Cultural Revolution changed his professional career, in 1968 he became an editor of the Tianjin branch office of the New China News Agency, where he wrote numerous commentaries on the political and social life. He was also responsible for a number of economic publications of the agency. 

Already in 1998 Yang Jishen had published the book "The Era of Deng Xiaoping: 20 Years of Reform and Opening" where he also mentions the Democracy Movement of the late 1970s and the critical dazibao at the Xidan "Democracy Wall", but he has to change and shorten parts of his text by order of the censorship authorities.

In 2003 Yang Jisheng becomes a deputy editor-in-chief of the reform-orientated monthly "Yanhuang Chunqiu" (Spring and Autumn Annals). In 2004 he publishes in Hong Kong the book "Political Struggles During the Chinese Reform Era" revealing details on the Chinese leadership's behavior during the period between Mao's death and the Tiananmen Events in 1989. He also publishes three interviews he had made with die former government and Party leader Zhao Ziyang who had been deposed in 1989. In 2008 Yang became internationally known with his book "Tombstone - The Untold Story of Mao's Great Famine 1958 - 1962"

In early 2015 retired from the liberal "Yanhuang Chunqiu" magazine after growing political pressure by the authorities. In two open letters shortly after he exposes the censorship methods and reveals the fact that 20 to 80 percent of the planned articles for each issue (mostly on contemporary Chinese history and aspects of the reform politics) had not been not allowed publication.

 

 

Interview with Yang Jisheng (on October 28, 2013 in the "Yanhuang Chunqiu" office in Beijing home)

Here you find the Chinese text of the interview (an English translation will be provided later).


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