Jiang Qing, or Chiang Ch'ing (1914–91), Chinese Communist leader; widow of Mao Zedong. She joined the Communist Party in 1933 and married Mao in 1939. During the 1960s she led the Cultural Revolution and was elected to the Politburo in 1969. Accused by Mao's successors of leading a coup attempt, she and 3 other radicals (the “Gang of Four”) were arrested and charged with treason. Jiang was condemned to death, but her sentence was commuted to life imprisonment in 1983.