Lei Feng (雷锋; Léi Fēng) (December 18,1940 - August 15,1962) was a soldier of the People's Liberation Army of the PRC. He was characterized by propaganda as a selfless and modest figure after his death and consequently was an idol to many. Today Lei continues to serve as the idol to elementary school students who commemorate and "learn from" him in everyday life,and has become a resilient cultural icon,with many t-shirts printed with his picture on the front. Born in Wangcheng,Hunan (near the Town of Leifeng,Changsha,Hunan,named in his honour),Lei joined the Communist youth corps when he was very young. Lei died in 1962 at the age of 22,when a telephone pole,struck by an army truck,killed him,when he was directing the truck in backing up. After Lei's death,Mao Zedong began what was to be known as the *"Learn from Comrade Lei Feng" (向雷锋同志学习) Campaign,designed to use Lei as a good example to the Chinese people to be cheerfully selfless and noble in thought. the Chinese word 学习，when translated literally,can be "to learn,or learn" however,given this context,it means something like "to follow",therefore,the slogan/phrase 向雷锋同志学习 means more of something like "follow the examples of comrade Lei-Feng." Since,March 5th has become the official "Learn from Lei Feng Day". This day involves various community and school events where people go clean up parks,schools,and other community locations. Local news on that day usually has footage from these events. Lei's most recognizable image in popular culture is in t-shirt,he's in the same category as other revolutionary symbols including Mao Zedong and Che Guevera at street vendors. Some Lei Feng t-shirts have made their way into the United States as well. Hayden Christensen's character in the movie Life as a House is wearing a Lei Feng t-shirt. In March 2006,China released a game titled Learn From Lei Feng Online in which the player has to do good deeds,fight spies,and collect parts of Mao Zedong's collection. If the player wins,he or she gets to meet Chairman Mao in the game.
Cultural Importance Communist China's leaders have praised Lei Feng as the personification of altruism,the truly selfless figure. Although the historicity and authenticity of the man's story is under dispute,his cultural importance is ingrained within everyday life in China. The importance of moral character was emphasized heavily during Mao's era,but Deng-era reforms have seen a moral erosion where competitiveness in social networks has paved its path. Lei Feng's prominence from school textbooks have declined since the 1970's,although he remains part of the national curriculum and many of his deeds are taught in the elementary school curriculum. The term huo Lei Feng (literally Lei Feng alive) has become a noun (or adjective) for anyone that is seen as selfless,or anyone that goes out of their way to help others.
Lei Feng (December 18, 1940 - August 15, 1962) was a example of the soldier of the People's Liberation Army of the People's Republic of China. LeiFeng,formerly named Lei Zhengxing, was born in a poor farmer's family in Dec 18 1940 in Jianjia Tang Disctrict,Wangcheng Town, Changsha City of Hunan Province. Lei was orphaned at 7 years old. He became a member in the Communist youth corps when he was young and joined a transportation unit of the People's Liberation Army at the age of twenty. Lei died in 1962 at the age of 22, when a telephone pole, struck by an army truck, hit him while he was directing the truck in backing up. fter Lei's death, his diary was published, and Lei was built up as a good example to the Chinese people to be cheerfully selfless and noble in thought. On March 5, the anniversary day, many volunteers took part in various social commonweal activities at their spare-time.
They could be seen everywhere, such as campus, public squares, residential communities and bus stops. They contributed their love in forms of teaching English, counseling in law affairs, taking care of orphans, cleaning notice boards, and so on.