China's Cultural Revolution -- Rock 'n' Roll Style

China's former communist leader, Chairman Mao Zedong, whipped his nation into a mass hysteria with his "cultural revolution" in the 1960s, when he said the only acceptable way of live was according to his creed -- a live stripped of all decadence and luxury.

Today, Shanghai, China, is a much different place than it was in the 1960s and 1970s, when nearly everyone wore Mao's peasant jackets. It is louder, brasher and more independent.

"This is the real cultural revolution," said Hung Huang, who edits magazines on what's hip and happening in the city. "The whole way the Chinese think, the whole way that we look at life, are being turned upside down."

In Shanghai, most things western are hot -- rockers, Hooters, Harleys.

Hung says that it's all about freedom, and freedom is happiness -- especially the freedom to make money and spend it on brand names. It also means the right to get rich, as long as you don't challenge the still-ruling Communist Party.

Hung thinks there are three reasons the city has changed so quickly.

"Number one is because of the access to information, the Internet, mobile phones," he said.

A half-billion Chinese are on mobile phones and 120 million are on the Web. Even with 30,000 Internet censors at work, there's very little the Chinese can't see or hear when they want to.

"Two's entertainment," Hung said. "China didn't have an entertainment industry. People didn't know how to have fun."

Today, they toast each other with champagne and celebrate at their favorite sporting events or concerts. Even Rolling Stones have come to town.

"Last, but probably the most important thing, is individualism," Hung said. "They have already started to think of themselves as 'me.' It's the me generation. I want to have fun. I want to do something creative. It's all about 'me.' "

With the newfound individualism, some are staring to push the envelope. Avant-garde artists like the Gao brothers can now show all the risqué nudes they want. Their painting of Tiananmen Square, which is viewed through a bullet hole in a protestor's hand is still too sensitive for public viewing.

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