The Eighties

Tim Plowman & Zach Phillips



Jimmy Carter (1977-1980), Ronald Reagan (1981-1988), George Bush (1989-1992)

USSR Leaders

Leonid Brezhnev (1964-1982); Yuri Andropov (1982-1984); Konstatin Chernenko (1984-1985); Mikhail Gorbachev (1985-1991)

Pop Culture

Music Artists

Michael Jackson, The Police, Queen, Whitney Houston, Bon Jovi, Guns N Roses

Popular Songs

Funkytown (Lipps Inc., 1980); Jessie"s Girl (Rick Springfield, 1981); Chariots of Fire (Vangelis, 1982); Eye of the Tiger (Survivor, 1982); Billie Jean (Michael Jackson, 1983); What"s Love Got to Do With It (Tina Turner, 1984); Like a Virgin (Madonna, 1984); Rock Me Amadeus (Falco, 1986); Walk Like an Egyptian (The Bangles, 1986); Livin" on a Prayer (Bon Jovi, 1987); La Bamba (Los Lobos, 1987); Never Gonna Give You Up (Rick Astley, 1988)


Star Wars V: The Empire Strikes Back (1980); Indiana Jones: Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981); Back to the Future (1985); E.T (1982); Ghostbusters (1984); Star Wars VI: Return of the Jedi (1983); Aliens (1986); The Terminator (1984)


Leggings, oversized sweaters and tee shirts, plaid skirts, tights, slouch socks, parachute pants, jeans, jean jackets, polos

Major Events


Vietnam War memorial opened (1982); Sally Ride becomes first American woman in space (1983); President Reagan annocunces defense plan called "Star Wars" (1983); New York Stock Exchange suffers huge drop on "Black Monday" (1987)


Iran hostage crisis defused (1981); Assassination attempts on the Pope and President Reagan (1981); Massacre of students at Tiananmen Square in China (1989)

Cold War

Mikhail Gorbachev becomes leader of Soviet Union (1985); Iran-Contra affair - Reagan had been selling weapons to Iran to illegally finance the Contra rebels in Nicaragua (1986); Gorbachev initates "Perestroika", or a free debate system in the USSR (1986); Berlin Wall torn down (1989)


AIDS first identified (1981); Personal computers introduced for the first time by IBM (1981); Hole in the ozone layer discovered  (1985); USSR launches Mir space station (1986); DNA first used to convict criminals (1987)



Stephen King, Tom Clancy, Roald Dahl, Orson Scott Card


Ender"s Game (Orson Scott Card); The Twits (Roald Dahl); The Bourne Identity (Robert Ludlum); Fatherhood (Bill Cosby); Ironweed (William Kennedy); The Official Preppy Handbook (Birnbach, Roberts, Wallace, Wiley)

Works Consulted