Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
In an example of metonymy, Zhongnanhai is synonymous with the leaders of the People's Republic of China (as the White House refers to the U.S. President). President Hu Jintao and other top PRC leadership figures often meet foreign dignitaries inside the complex. CCTV frequently shows footage of meetings inside the compound, but limits it largely to views inside buildings.
The name means "central and southern seas" and is sometimes translated as "Sea Palaces". Zhongnanhai has served as a government center since the early days of the Chinese Republic, which built many of the structures in what had been an imperial leisure garden containing a series of lakes in a walled, parklike setting. Chinese maps of Beijing show Zhongnanhai as a green area with a waterbody; the municipal government, however, is shown significantly with a red star.
Zhongnanhai is inaccessible to the general public. Its most significant entrance is the southern one at Xinhuamen (which means "Gate of New China"), surrounded by two slogans which wish long life to the "great Communist Party of China" and "invincible Mao Zedong Thought." The view behind the entrance is shielded by a wall with the slogan "Serve the People ", itself in the handwriting of Mao Zedong. The Xinhuamen entrance lies just on the West Chang'an Avenue.
On April 18, 1989 several pro-democracy students began a sit-in outside the Zhongnanhai compound. They were highly visible to passerbyers on Chang'an Avenue. The students held signs reading "Down with Dictatorship" and "Long Live Democracy". Many of the students would later be involved in the Tiananmen Square protests of 1989
On April 20, Zhongnanhai guards attacked the protesting students with belts and clubs. The attack brought renewed determination to the student protesters and as news of the beating spread pro-democracy students in campuses across China rallied to "Support Beijing".
Zhongnanhai is also the most popular brand of cigarettes in China. According to the pack text, they are made with "a choice blend of the world's finest tobaccos and herb".
- Zhongnanhai cigarettes web site
The contents of this article is licensed from www.wikipedia.org under the GNU Free Documentation License. Click here to see the transparent copy and copyright details