Deng Xiaoping (22 August 1904 – 19 February 1997), also known by his courtesy name Xixian (希贤), was a Chinese revolutionary leader, military commander and statesman who served as the paramount leader of the People's Republic of China (PRC) from December 1978 to 1992.- Deng Xiaoping
The paramount leaders have been Mao Zedong (1949-1976); Hua Guofeng (1976-1978); Deng Xiaoping (1978-1989); Jiang Zemin (1989-2002); Hu Jintao (2002-2012); and Xi Jinping (2012 to present).- History of the People's Republic of China
The term gained prominence during the era of Deng Xiaoping (1978–1989), when he was able to wield political power without necessarily holding any official or formally significant party or government positions at any given time (head of state, head of government or CCP General Secretary).- Paramount leader
In August 1980, Deng embarked on a series of political reforms by setting constitutional term limits for state officials and other systematic revisions, which were incorporated in China's third Constitution (1982).- Deng Xiaoping
Military power had always been an important facet in the exercise of political power in Communist-ruled China and as such holding the top military post meant that Jiang retained some formal power.- Paramount leader
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He was in charge of the political reforms in China from 1986, but lost power in connection with the reformative neoauthoritarianism current and his support of the 1989 Tiananmen Square protests.
He emerged on the national scene due to support from Deng Xiaoping after the Cultural Revolution.
After ousting Hua Guofeng as China's "paramount leader" in 1978, Deng Xiaoping recognized the "Sichuan Experience" as a model for Chinese economic reform.