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Mao Zedong (1893-1976) ruled China from 1949 until his death in 1967, sprucing up the nation with several teenage revolutions and great leaps backward and forward. Mao's Communists and Chiang Kai Shek's Nationalists fought tenaciously against the Japanese invaders in the 1930s and early 1940s, then fought more tenaciously against each other in the civil war of the late 1940s. Mao's victory in 1949 can safely be called a mixed blessing. Though Mao's cult of personality remains strong, he did not establish a blood dynasty, and the future of Maoism in China is questionable at best.