From the International Herald Tribune, via A Glimpse of the World blog:
Around 1980, the party leadership admitted that three decades of orthodox Communism had produced little economic gain and constant political upheaval. In a 180-degree turn, party leaders began to push a market economy, encouraging people to get rich fast instead of striving for equality.
The initial experiment was carried out at Shenzhen, a town across the border from Hong Kong, because the party did not trust that it could keep Shanghai’s notoriously capitalist-minded people under control. It was only in 1991, in the aftermath of the Tiananmen massacre, when Beijing desperately needed to appease popular discontent, that the party leadership finally “opened” Shanghai. Once let loose, the city wasted no time. [Full text]