Kang Sheng

Name in Chinese
Name in Wade-Giles
K'ang Sheng
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Biography in English

K'ang Sheng (1899-), Chinese Communist leader in security and intelligence work in Shanghai and at Yenan.

Chuch'eng, a small city in eastern Shantung, was the birthplace of K'ang Sheng. His father was a moderately wealthy landholder. Little is known about K'ang's childhood or primary education. About 1920 he went to Shanghai to attend the Shanghai University Middle School. He then enrolled at Shanghai University, where he studied under Ch'ü Chiu-pai (q.v.). In the early 1920's, he joined the Communist Youth League and the Chinese Communist party. From 1925 to 1928 he worked under Hsiang Ying q.v.), then the secretary of the party's Shanghai district committee, as a labor organizer. He soon became the director of the district committee's organization department, and he also undertook intelligence work for the political security bureau of the party.

After the split between the Kuomintang and the Communists in August 1927, the Kuomintang intensified police surveillance in Shanghai, forcing Communists and other radicals to carry on their activities secretly or to leave the area. Little information concerning K'ang Sheng's activities in 1928-30 is available. It has been reported that he was elected to the Central Committee of the Chinese Communist party at the Sixth National Congress, held at Moscow in 1928. However, because no official list of the 1928 Central Committee has been published, K'ang's election cannot be documented. It is certain that K'ang had reached the Soviet Union by 1933. He and Ch'en Shao-yü (q.v.) wrote a tract called Revolutionary China Today in 1 934, and he was a delegate to the Seventh Congress of the Comintern in 1935, at which he became a candidate member of the Presidium and of the Executive Committee. In 1937 he returned to China with Ch'en Shao-yü and Ch'en Yun.

K'ang Sheng went to Yenan, where he worked in the organization department of the Chinese Communist party under Ch'en Yun and took charge of many of the party's security operations. He later served as a member of the Central Committee's organization department and as director of the central social department. He also became vice president of the Central Party School in Yenan. At the party's Seventh National Congress, held at Yenan in April 1945, K'ang was elected to the Central Committee and the Political Bureau.

When the Central People's Government was established in 1949, K'ang was appointed to the Government Council and to the executive board of the Sino-Soviet Friendship Association. He held these posts until 1954. During this period, he also served as chairman of the Shantung Provincial People's Government and as secretary of the Shantung sub-bureau of the Central Committee. In 1950 he became a member of the East China Military and Administrative Committee; he served on this committee and on its successor, the East China Administrative Committee, until 1954. After the adoption of a new constitution in 1954 and the reorganization of the Central People's Government, he became less prominent in government affairs.

In December 1954 K'ang Sheng was elected to the National Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference and to its standing committee. He led a delegation to the Third Congress of the United Socialist party in East Germany in 1956. At the Eighth National Congress of the Chinese Communist party, held in September 1956, he was reelected to the Central Committee, but was made an alternate member of the Political Bureau, of which he had been a full member. In February 1956 K'ang was appointed a vice chairman of the Central Working Committee for the Popularization of Common Spoken Language, headed by Ch'en Yi (1901-; q.v.). After June 1958 he was a professor at Peking People's University. He represented Shantung at the Second and Third National People's congresses, held in 1958 and 1964. In late January 1959 K'ang accompanied Chou En-lai to Moscow for the Twenty-first Congress of the Communist party of the Soviet Union. He made another trip to Moscow that September to sign the Sino-Soviet Economic Cooperation Agreement. In February 1960 he attended the Political Consultative Conference of the Warsaw Treaty Nations as an observer. That autuEon, he served on a Chinese delegation to the October Revolution celebrations in Moscow. He also served on the Chinese delegation to the Third Congress of the Rumanian Workers party. In 1961 he went to North Korea in September to attend the Fourth Congress of the Korean Workers' party. He went to Moscow in April to attend the Twentysecond Congress of the Communist party of the Soviet Union. In November 1964 he accompanied Chou En-lai to Moscow for the October Revolution celebrations.

After the so-called Cultural Revolution began in 1966, K'ang's political status appeared to rise. He reportedly was restored to full membership on the Political Bureau in August 1966. K'ang married Ts'ao I-yu, and they had two children.

Biography in Chinese

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