1980s

1980s

Encyclopedia

File:1980s decade montage.png|thumb|400px|From left, clockwise: The first Space Shuttle
Space Shuttle
The Space Shuttle was a manned orbital rocket and spacecraft system operated by NASA on 135 missions from 1981 to 2011. The system combined rocket launch, orbital spacecraft, and re-entry spaceplane with modular add-ons...

, Columbia
Space Shuttle Columbia
Space Shuttle Columbia was the first spaceworthy Space Shuttle in NASA's orbital fleet. First launched on the STS-1 mission, the first of the Space Shuttle program, it completed 27 missions before being destroyed during re-entry on February 1, 2003 near the end of its 28th, STS-107. All seven crew...

, lifted off in 1981; American President
President
A president is a leader of an organization, company, trade union, university, or country.Etymologically, a president is one who presides, who sits in leadership...

 Ronald Reagan
Ronald Reagan
Ronald Wilson Reagan was the 40th President of the United States , the 33rd Governor of California and, prior to that, a radio, film and television actor....

 and Soviet
Soviet Union
The Soviet Union , officially the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics , was a constitutionally socialist state that existed in Eurasia between 1922 and 1991....

 leader
General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union
General Secretary of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union was the title given to the leader of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union. With some exceptions, the office was synonymous with leader of the Soviet Union...

 Mikhail Gorbachev
Mikhail Gorbachev
Mikhail Sergeyevich Gorbachev is a former Soviet statesman, having served as General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union from 1985 until 1991, and as the last head of state of the USSR, having served from 1988 until its dissolution in 1991...

 eased tensions between the two superpowers, leading to the end of the Cold War
Cold War
The Cold War was the continuing state from roughly 1946 to 1991 of political conflict, military tension, proxy wars, and economic competition between the Communist World—primarily the Soviet Union and its satellite states and allies—and the powers of the Western world, primarily the United States...

; The Fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989 is considered to be the most momentous event of the 1980s; In 1986, six astronauts and one teacher
Christa McAuliffe
Christa McAuliffe was an American teacher from Concord, New Hampshire, and was one of the seven crew members killed in the Space Shuttle Challenger disaster....

 died in the Challenger disaster
Space Shuttle Challenger disaster
The Space Shuttle Challenger disaster occurred on January 28, 1986, when Space Shuttle Challenger broke apart 73 seconds into its flight, leading to the deaths of its seven crew members. The spacecraft disintegrated over the Atlantic Ocean, off the coast of central Florida at 11:38 am EST...

; In 1985, the Live Aid
Live Aid
Live Aid was a dual-venue concert that was held on 13 July 1985. The event was organized by Bob Geldof and Midge Ure to raise funds for relief of the ongoing Ethiopian famine. Billed as the "global jukebox", the event was held simultaneously in Wembley Stadium in London, England, United Kingdom ...

 concert was held in order to fund relief efforts for the famine in Ethiopia; Ukraine
Ukraine
Ukraine is a country in Eastern Europe. It has an area of 603,628 km², making it the second largest contiguous country on the European continent, after Russia...

 and much of the world is filled with radioactive debris from the 1986 Chernobyl disaster
Chernobyl disaster
The Chernobyl disaster was a nuclear accident that occurred on 26 April 1986 at the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant in Ukraine , which was under the direct jurisdiction of the central authorities in Moscow...

; The Iran–Iraq War leads to over one million dead and $1 trillion spent.
rect 2 3 199 169 Space Shuttle Columbia
Space Shuttle Columbia
Space Shuttle Columbia was the first spaceworthy Space Shuttle in NASA's orbital fleet. First launched on the STS-1 mission, the first of the Space Shuttle program, it completed 27 missions before being destroyed during re-entry on February 1, 2003 near the end of its 28th, STS-107. All seven crew...


rect 201 1 497 171 End of the Cold War
rect 1 172 241 336 Iran–Iraq War
rect 246 173 506 336 Fall of the Berlin Wall
rect 123 337 323 525 Live Aid
Live Aid
Live Aid was a dual-venue concert that was held on 13 July 1985. The event was organized by Bob Geldof and Midge Ure to raise funds for relief of the ongoing Ethiopian famine. Billed as the "global jukebox", the event was held simultaneously in Wembley Stadium in London, England, United Kingdom ...


rect 326 338 510 536 Space Shuttle Challenger disaster
Space Shuttle Challenger disaster
The Space Shuttle Challenger disaster occurred on January 28, 1986, when Space Shuttle Challenger broke apart 73 seconds into its flight, leading to the deaths of its seven crew members. The spacecraft disintegrated over the Atlantic Ocean, off the coast of central Florida at 11:38 am EST...


rect 0 339 121 515 Chernobyl disaster
Chernobyl disaster
The Chernobyl disaster was a nuclear accident that occurred on 26 April 1986 at the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant in Ukraine , which was under the direct jurisdiction of the central authorities in Moscow...



The 1980s, spoken as "the Nineteen Eighties" or abbreviated as "The Eighties" or "the 80s", was the decade that began on January 1, 1980, and ended on December 31, 1989, and was the start of the eighth decade and ended on the ninth decade of the 20th century.

The time period saw great social, economic, and general change as wealth and production migrated to newly industrializing economies. As economic liberalization increased in the developed world, multiple multinational corporations associated with the manufacturing industry relocated into Thailand
Thailand
Thailand , officially the Kingdom of Thailand , formerly known as Siam , is a country located at the centre of the Indochina peninsula and Southeast Asia. It is bordered to the north by Burma and Laos, to the east by Laos and Cambodia, to the south by the Gulf of Thailand and Malaysia, and to the...

, Malaysia, Mexico
Mexico
The United Mexican States , commonly known as Mexico , is a federal constitutional republic in North America. It is bordered on the north by the United States; on the south and west by the Pacific Ocean; on the southeast by Guatemala, Belize, and the Caribbean Sea; and on the east by the Gulf of...

, South Korea
South Korea
The Republic of Korea , , is a sovereign state in East Asia, located on the southern portion of the Korean Peninsula. It is neighbored by the People's Republic of China to the west, Japan to the east, North Korea to the north, and the East China Sea and Republic of China to the south...

, Taiwan
Republic of China
The Republic of China , commonly known as Taiwan , is a unitary sovereign state located in East Asia. Originally based in mainland China, the Republic of China currently governs the island of Taiwan , which forms over 99% of its current territory, as well as Penghu, Kinmen, Matsu and other minor...

, China
People's Republic of China
China , officially the People's Republic of China , is the most populous country in the world, with over 1.3 billion citizens. Located in East Asia, the country covers approximately 9.6 million square kilometres...

, and new market economies in Eastern Europe
Eastern Europe
Eastern Europe is the eastern part of Europe. The term has widely disparate geopolitical, geographical, cultural and socioeconomic readings, which makes it highly context-dependent and even volatile, and there are "almost as many definitions of Eastern Europe as there are scholars of the region"...

 following the collapse of communism in eastern Europe. Japan and West Germany
West Germany
West Germany is the common English, but not official, name for the Federal Republic of Germany or FRG in the period between its creation in May 1949 to German reunification on 3 October 1990....

 are the most notable developed countries that continued to enjoy rapid economic growth during the decade while other developed nations, particularly the United States
United States
The United States of America is a federal constitutional republic comprising fifty states and a federal district...

 and United Kingdom
United Kingdom
The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern IrelandIn the United Kingdom and Dependencies, other languages have been officially recognised as legitimate autochthonous languages under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages...

, re-adopted laissez-faire
Laissez-faire
In economics, laissez-faire describes an environment in which transactions between private parties are free from state intervention, including restrictive regulations, taxes, tariffs and enforced monopolies....

 economic policies.

Developing countries across the world faced economic and social difficulties as they suffered from multiple debt crises in the 1980s, requiring many of these countries to apply for financial assistance from the International Monetary Fund
International Monetary Fund
The International Monetary Fund is an organization of 187 countries, working to foster global monetary cooperation, secure financial stability, facilitate international trade, promote high employment and sustainable economic growth, and reduce poverty around the world...

 (IMF) and the World Bank
World Bank
The World Bank is an international financial institution that provides loans to developing countries for capital programmes.The World Bank's official goal is the reduction of poverty...

. Ethiopia
Ethiopia
Ethiopia , officially known as the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia, is a country located in the Horn of Africa. It is the second-most populous nation in Africa, with over 82 million inhabitants, and the tenth-largest by area, occupying 1,100,000 km2...

 witnessed widespread famine in the mid-1980s, resulting in the country having to depend on foreign aid to provide food to its population and worldwide efforts to address and raise money to help Ethiopians, such as the famous Live Aid
Live Aid
Live Aid was a dual-venue concert that was held on 13 July 1985. The event was organized by Bob Geldof and Midge Ure to raise funds for relief of the ongoing Ethiopian famine. Billed as the "global jukebox", the event was held simultaneously in Wembley Stadium in London, England, United Kingdom ...

 concert in 1985.

Major civil discontent and violence occurred in the Middle East, including the Iran-Iraq War
Iran-Iraq War
The Iran–Iraq War was an armed conflict between the armed forces of Iraq and Iran, lasting from September 1980 to August 1988, making it the longest conventional war of the twentieth century...

, the ongoing Soviet-Afghan War, the 1982 Lebanon War
1982 Lebanon War
The 1982 Lebanon War , , called Operation Peace for Galilee by Israel, and later known in Israel as the Lebanon War and First Lebanon War, began on 6 June 1982, when the Israel Defense Forces invaded southern Lebanon...

, the Bombing of Libya in 1986, and the First Intifada
First Intifada
The First Intifada was a Palestinian uprising against the Israeli occupation of the Palestinian Territories. The uprising began in the Jabalia refugee camp and quickly spread throughout Gaza, the West Bank and East Jerusalem....

 in the Gaza Strip
Gaza Strip
thumb|Gaza city skylineThe Gaza Strip lies on the Eastern coast of the Mediterranean Sea. The Strip borders Egypt on the southwest and Israel on the south, east and north. It is about long, and between 6 and 12 kilometres wide, with a total area of...

 and the West Bank
West Bank
The West Bank ) of the Jordan River is the landlocked geographical eastern part of the Palestinian territories located in Western Asia. To the west, north, and south, the West Bank shares borders with the state of Israel. To the east, across the Jordan River, lies the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan...

.

In the eastern world, hostility to authoritarianism
Authoritarianism
Authoritarianism is a form of social organization characterized by submission to authority. It is usually opposed to individualism and democracy...

 and the failing command economies of communist states resulted in a wave of reformist policies by communist regimes such as the policies of perestroika
Perestroika
Perestroika was a political movement within the Communist Party of the Soviet Union during 1980s, widely associated with the Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev...

 and glasnost
Glasnost
Glasnost was the policy of maximal publicity, openness, and transparency in the activities of all government institutions in the Soviet Union, together with freedom of information, introduced by Mikhail Gorbachev in the second half of the 1980s...

 in the Soviet Union, along with the overthrows and attempted overthrows of a number of communist regimes, such as in Poland
History of Poland (1945–1989)
The history of Poland from 1945 to 1989 spans the period of Soviet Communist dominance imposed after the end of World War II over the People's Republic of Poland...

, Hungary
People's Republic of Hungary
The People's Republic of Hungary or Hungarian People's Republic was the official state name of Hungary from 1949 to 1989 during its Communist period under the guidance of the Soviet Union. The state remained in existence until 1989 when opposition forces consolidated in forcing the regime to...

, the Tiananmen Square protests of 1989
Tiananmen Square protests of 1989
The Tiananmen Square protests of 1989, also known as the June Fourth Incident in Chinese , were a series of demonstrations in and near Tiananmen Square in Beijing in the People's Republic of China beginning on 15 April 1989...

 in China, the Czechoslovak "Velvet Revolution"
Velvet Revolution
The Velvet Revolution or Gentle Revolution was a non-violent revolution in Czechoslovakia that took place from November 17 – December 29, 1989...

, and the overthrow of the Nicolae Ceauşescu
Nicolae Ceausescu
Nicolae Ceaușescu was a Romanian Communist politician. He was General Secretary of the Romanian Communist Party from 1965 to 1989, and as such was the country's second and last Communist leader...

 regime in Romania
Communist Romania
Communist Romania was the period in Romanian history when that country was a Soviet-aligned communist state in the Eastern Bloc, with the dominant role of Romanian Communist Party enshrined in its successive constitutions...

 and other communist
Communist state
A communist state is a state with a form of government characterized by single-party rule or dominant-party rule of a communist party and a professed allegiance to a Leninist or Marxist-Leninist communist ideology as the guiding principle of the state...

 Warsaw Pact
Warsaw Pact
The Warsaw Treaty Organization of Friendship, Cooperation, and Mutual Assistance , or more commonly referred to as the Warsaw Pact, was a mutual defense treaty subscribed to by eight communist states in Eastern Europe...

 states in Central
Central Europe
Central Europe or alternatively Middle Europe is a region of the European continent lying between the variously defined areas of Eastern and Western Europe...

 and Eastern Europe
Eastern Europe
Eastern Europe is the eastern part of Europe. The term has widely disparate geopolitical, geographical, cultural and socioeconomic readings, which makes it highly context-dependent and even volatile, and there are "almost as many definitions of Eastern Europe as there are scholars of the region"...

. It came to be called the late 1980s' "purple passage of the autumn of nations". By 1989, with the disintegration of the Warsaw Pact, the Soviet Union announced the abandonment of political hostility toward the western world and, thus, the Cold War
Cold War
The Cold War was the continuing state from roughly 1946 to 1991 of political conflict, military tension, proxy wars, and economic competition between the Communist World—primarily the Soviet Union and its satellite states and allies—and the powers of the Western world, primarily the United States...

 ended. These changes continued to be felt in the 1990s and into the 21st century.

Terrorist attacks




The most notable terrorist attacks of the decade include:
  • Air India Flight 182
    Air India Flight 182
    Air India Flight 182 was an Air India flight operating on the Montreal–London–Delhi route. On 23 June 1985, the airplane operating on the route a Boeing 747-237B named after Emperor Kanishka was blown up by a bomb at an altitude of , and crashed into the Atlantic Ocean while in Irish airspace.A...

     was destroyed on June 23, 1985 by Sikh
    Sikh
    A Sikh is a follower of Sikhism. It primarily originated in the 15th century in the Punjab region of South Asia. The term "Sikh" has its origin in Sanskrit term शिष्य , meaning "disciple, student" or शिक्ष , meaning "instruction"...

    -Canadian militants. It was the biggest mass murder involving Canadians in Canada's history.
  • The Rome and Vienna airport attacks
    Rome and Vienna airport attacks
    The Rome and Vienna airport attacks were two major terrorist strikes carried out on December 27, 1985.- The attacks :At 08:15 GMT, four gunmen walked to the shared ticket counter for Israel's El Al Airlines and Trans World Airlines at Leonardo da Vinci-Fiumicino Airport outside Rome, Italy, fired...

     take place on December 27, 1985 against the Israeli El Al
    El Al
    El Al Israel Airlines Ltd , trading as El Al , is the flag carrier of Israel. It operates scheduled domestic and international services and cargo flights to Europe, North America, Africa and the Far East from its main base in Ben Gurion International Airport...

     airline. The attack was done by militants loyal to Abu Nidal
    Abu Nidal
    Abu Nidal , born Sabri Khalil al-Banna , was the founder of Fatah–The Revolutionary Council , a militant Palestinian group more commonly known as the Abu Nidal Organization...

    , backed by the government of Libya
    Libya
    Libya is an African country in the Maghreb region of North Africa bordered by the Mediterranean Sea to the north, Egypt to the east, Sudan to the southeast, Chad and Niger to the south, and Algeria and Tunisia to the west....

    .
  • The 1983 Beirut barracks bombing
    1983 Beirut barracks bombing
    The Beirut Barracks Bombing occurred during the Lebanese Civil War, when two truck bombs struck separate buildings housing United States and French military forces—members of the Multinational Force in Lebanon—killing 299 American and French servicemen...

     - during the Lebanese Civil War
    Lebanese Civil War
    The Lebanese Civil War was a multifaceted civil war in Lebanon. The war lasted from 1975 to 1990 and resulted in an estimated 150,000 to 230,000 civilian fatalities. Another one million people were wounded, and today approximately 350,000 people remain displaced. There was also a mass exodus of...

     two truck bombs struck separate buildings housing United States and French military forces killing 299 American and French servicemen. The organization Islamic Jihad
    Islamic Jihad Organization
    The Islamic Jihad Organization – IJO or Organisation du Jihad Islamique in French, but best known as ‘Islamic Jihad’ for short, was a fundamentalist Shia group known for its activities in the 1980s during the Lebanese Civil War...

     claimed responsibility for the bombing.
  • The Lockerbie Disaster on 21 December 1988, when a Boeing 747-121 was blown up over the village of Lockerbie, Scotland while enroute from London's Heathrow Airport to New York's JFK. The bombing killed all 243 passengers, 17 crew members and 11 people on the ground, totaling 270 fatalities who were citizens of 21 nationalities. The bombing was and remains the worst terrorist attack on UK soil.
  • Salvadoran Civil War 1980-1992, part of the cold war conflicts, reached its peak in the 1980s, 70,000 salvadorans died.

Wars



The most prominent armed conflicts of the decade include:

International wars





The most notable wars of the decade include:
  • The Cold War
    Cold War
    The Cold War was the continuing state from roughly 1946 to 1991 of political conflict, military tension, proxy wars, and economic competition between the Communist World—primarily the Soviet Union and its satellite states and allies—and the powers of the Western world, primarily the United States...

     (1945–1991)
    • Soviet war in Afghanistan
      Soviet war in Afghanistan
      The Soviet war in Afghanistan was a nine-year conflict involving the Soviet Union, supporting the Marxist-Leninist government of the Democratic Republic of Afghanistan against the Afghan Mujahideen and foreign "Arab–Afghan" volunteers...

       (1979–1989) - a war fought between the Soviet Union and the Islamist Mujahideen Resistance in Afghanistan. The mujahideen found other support from a variety of sources including the United States, Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, and other Muslim nations through the context of the Cold War and the regional India-Pakistan conflict.
    • Invasion of Grenada
      Invasion of Grenada
      The Invasion of Grenada, codenamed Operation Urgent Fury, was a 1983 United States-led invasion of Grenada, a Caribbean island nation with a population of about 100,000 located north of Venezuela. Triggered by a military coup which had ousted a four-year revolutionary government, the invasion...

       (1983) - a 1983 U.S.-led invasion of Grenada
      Grenada
      Grenada is an island country and Commonwealth Realm consisting of the island of Grenada and six smaller islands at the southern end of the Grenadines in the southeastern Caribbean Sea...

      , triggered by a military coup which ousted a brief revolution
      Revolution
      A revolution is a fundamental change in power or organizational structures that takes place in a relatively short period of time.Aristotle described two types of political revolution:...

      ary government. The successful invasion led to a change of government but was controversial due to charges of American imperialism, Cold War
      Cold War
      The Cold War was the continuing state from roughly 1946 to 1991 of political conflict, military tension, proxy wars, and economic competition between the Communist World—primarily the Soviet Union and its satellite states and allies—and the powers of the Western world, primarily the United States...

       politics, the involvement of Cuba
      Cuba
      The Republic of Cuba is an island nation in the Caribbean. The nation of Cuba consists of the main island of Cuba, the Isla de la Juventud, and several archipelagos. Havana is the largest city in Cuba and the country's capital. Santiago de Cuba is the second largest city...

      , the unstable state of the Grenadian government, and Grenada's status as a Commonwealth realm
      Commonwealth Realm
      A Commonwealth realm is a sovereign state within the Commonwealth of Nations that has Elizabeth II as its monarch and head of state. The sixteen current realms have a combined land area of 18.8 million km² , and a population of 134 million, of which all, except about two million, live in the six...

      .
  • Arab–Israeli conflict
    Arab–Israeli conflict
    The Arab–Israeli conflict refers to political tensions and open hostilities between the Arab peoples and the Jewish community of the Middle East. The modern Arab-Israeli conflict began with the rise of Zionism and Arab Nationalism towards the end of the nineteenth century, and intensified with the...

     (Early 20th century-present)
    • 1982 Lebanon War
      1982 Lebanon War
      The 1982 Lebanon War , , called Operation Peace for Galilee by Israel, and later known in Israel as the Lebanon War and First Lebanon War, began on 6 June 1982, when the Israel Defense Forces invaded southern Lebanon...

       - The Government of Israel
      Politics of Israel
      The Israeli system of government is based on parliamentary democracy. The Prime Minister of Israel is the head of government and leader of a multi-party system. Executive power is exercised by the government. Legislative power is vested in the Knesset. The Judiciary is independent of the executive...

       ordered the invasion as a response to the assassination attempt against Israel's ambassador to the United Kingdom, Shlomo Argov
      Shlomo Argov
      Shlomo Argov was a prominent Israeli diplomat. He was the Israeli ambassador to the United Kingdom whose attempted assassination led to the 1982 Lebanon War.-Attempted assassination:...

       by the Abu Nidal Organization and due to the constant terror attacks on northern Israel made by the terrorist organizations which resided in Lebanon. After attacking the PLO
      Palestine Liberation Organization
      The Palestine Liberation Organization is a political and paramilitary organization which was created in 1964. It is recognized as the "sole legitimate representative of the Palestinian people" by the United Nations and over 100 states with which it holds diplomatic relations, and has enjoyed...

      , as well as Syria
      Syria
      Syria , officially the Syrian Arab Republic , is a country in Western Asia, bordering Lebanon and the Mediterranean Sea to the West, Turkey to the north, Iraq to the east, Jordan to the south, and Israel to the southwest....

      n, leftist and Muslim
      Muslim
      A Muslim, also spelled Moslem, is an adherent of Islam, a monotheistic, Abrahamic religion based on the Quran, which Muslims consider the verbatim word of God as revealed to prophet Muhammad. "Muslim" is the Arabic term for "submitter" .Muslims believe that God is one and incomparable...

       Lebanese
      Lebanon
      Lebanon , officially the Republic of LebanonRepublic of Lebanon is the most common term used by Lebanese government agencies. The term Lebanese Republic, a literal translation of the official Arabic and French names that is not used in today's world. Arabic is the most common language spoken among...

       forces, Israel occupied southern Lebanon and eventually surrounded the PLO
      Palestine Liberation Organization
      The Palestine Liberation Organization is a political and paramilitary organization which was created in 1964. It is recognized as the "sole legitimate representative of the Palestinian people" by the United Nations and over 100 states with which it holds diplomatic relations, and has enjoyed...

       in west Beirut
      Beirut
      Beirut is the capital and largest city of Lebanon, with a population ranging from 1 million to more than 2 million . Located on a peninsula at the midpoint of Lebanon's Mediterranean coastline, it serves as the country's largest and main seaport, and also forms the Beirut Metropolitan...

       and subjected to heavy bombardment, they negotiated passage from Lebanon.
  • The Iran-Iraq war
    Iran-Iraq War
    The Iran–Iraq War was an armed conflict between the armed forces of Iraq and Iran, lasting from September 1980 to August 1988, making it the longest conventional war of the twentieth century...

     took place from 1980 to 1988. Iraq
    Iraq
    Iraq ; officially the Republic of Iraq is a country in Western Asia spanning most of the northwestern end of the Zagros mountain range, the eastern part of the Syrian Desert and the northern part of the Arabian Desert....

     was accused of using illegal chemical weapons to kill Iran
    Iran
    Iran , officially the Islamic Republic of Iran , is a country in Southern and Western Asia. The name "Iran" has been in use natively since the Sassanian era and came into use internationally in 1935, before which the country was known to the Western world as Persia...

    ian forces and against its own dissident Kurdish
    Kurdish people
    The Kurdish people, or Kurds , are an Iranian people native to the Middle East, mostly inhabiting a region known as Kurdistan, which includes adjacent parts of Iran, Iraq, Syria, and Turkey...

     populations. Both sides suffered enormous casualties, but the poorly equipped Iranian armies suffered worse for it, being forced to use soldiers as young as 15 in human-wave attacks. Iran finally agreed to an armistice in 1988.
  • Argentina invaded the Falkland Islands (or Islas Malvinas, as they are known in Spanish
    Spanish language
    Spanish , also known as Castilian , is a Romance language in the Ibero-Romance group that evolved from several languages and dialects in central-northern Iberia around the 9th century and gradually spread with the expansion of the Kingdom of Castile into central and southern Iberia during the...

    -speaking countries), sparking the Falklands War
    Falklands War
    The Falklands War , also called the Falklands Conflict or Falklands Crisis, was fought in 1982 between Argentina and the United Kingdom over the disputed Falkland Islands and South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands...

    . It occurred from 2 April 1982–14 July 1982 between the United Kingdom and Argentina
    Argentina
    Argentina , officially the Argentine Republic , is the second largest country in South America by land area, after Brazil. It is constituted as a federation of 23 provinces and an autonomous city, Buenos Aires...

     as British forces fought to recover the islands. Britain emerged victorious and its stance in international affairs and its long decaying reputation as a colonial power received an unexpected boost. The military junta
    Military junta
    A junta or military junta is a government led by a committee of military leaders. The term derives from the Spanish language junta meaning committee, specifically a board of directors...

     of Argentina, on the other hand, was left humiliated by the defeat; and its leader Leopoldo Galtieri
    Leopoldo Galtieri
    Leopoldo Fortunato Galtieri Castelli was an Argentine general and President of Argentina from December 22, 1981 to June 18, 1982, during the last military dictatorship . The death squad Intelligence Battalion 601 directly reported to him...

     was deposed three days after the end of the war. A military investigation known as the Rattenbach report even recommended his execution.
  • The United States launched an aerial bombardment of Libya
    Operation El Dorado Canyon
    The 1986 United States bombing of Libya, code-named Operation El Dorado Canyon, comprised the joint United States Air Force, Navy and Marine Corps air-strikes against Libya on April 15, 1986. The attack was carried out in response to the 1986 Berlin discotheque bombing.-Origins:Shortly after his...

     in 1986 in retaliation for Libyan support of terrorism and attacks on US personnel in Germany and Turkey.
  • The South African Border War
    South African Border War
    The South African Border War, commonly referred to as the Angolan Bush War in South Africa, was a conflict that took place from 1966 to 1989 in South-West Africa and Angola between South Africa and its allied forces on the one side and the Angolan government, South-West Africa People's...

     between South Africa and the alliance of Angola
    Angola
    Angola, officially the Republic of Angola , is a country in south-central Africa bordered by Namibia on the south, the Democratic Republic of the Congo on the north, and Zambia on the east; its west coast is on the Atlantic Ocean with Luanda as its capital city...

    , Namibia
    Namibia
    Namibia, officially the Republic of Namibia , is a country in southern Africa whose western border is the Atlantic Ocean. It shares land borders with Angola and Zambia to the north, Botswana to the east and South Africa to the south and east. It gained independence from South Africa on 21 March...

    , and Zambia
    Zambia
    Zambia , officially the Republic of Zambia, is a landlocked country in Southern Africa. The neighbouring countries are the Democratic Republic of the Congo to the north, Tanzania to the north-east, Malawi to the east, Mozambique, Zimbabwe, Botswana and Namibia to the south, and Angola to the west....

     ended in 1989, ending over thirty years of conflict.
  • The United States engaged in significant direct and indirect conflict in the decade via alliances with various groups in a number of Central and South American countries claiming that the U.S. was acting to oppose the spread of communism
    Communism
    Communism is a social, political and economic ideology that aims at the establishment of a classless, moneyless, revolutionary and stateless socialist society structured upon common ownership of the means of production...

     and end illicit drug trade. The U.S. government supported the government of Colombia
    Colombia
    Colombia, officially the Republic of Colombia , is a unitary constitutional republic comprising thirty-two departments. The country is located in northwestern South America, bordered to the east by Venezuela and Brazil; to the south by Ecuador and Peru; to the north by the Caribbean Sea; to the...

    's attempts to destroy its large illicit cocaine
    Cocaine
    Cocaine is a crystalline tropane alkaloid that is obtained from the leaves of the coca plant. The name comes from "coca" in addition to the alkaloid suffix -ine, forming cocaine. It is a stimulant of the central nervous system, an appetite suppressant, and a topical anesthetic...

    -trafficking industry and provided support for right-wing military government in the Salvadoran civil war which became controversial after the El Mozote massacre
    El Mozote massacre
    The El Mozote Massacre took place in and around the village of El Mozote, in Morazán department, El Salvador, on December 11, 1981, when Salvadoran armed forces trained by the United States military killed at least 200 and up to 1000 civilians in an anti-guerrilla campaign during the Salvadoran...

     on December 11, 1981 in which U.S.-trained Salvadoran paramilitaries killed 1000 Salvadoran civilians. The United States, along with members of the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States
    Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States
    The Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States , created in 1981, is an inter-governmental organisation dedicated to economic harmonisation and integration, protection of human and legal rights, and the encouragement of good governance between countries and dependencies in the Eastern Caribbean...

    , invaded
    Invasion of Grenada
    The Invasion of Grenada, codenamed Operation Urgent Fury, was a 1983 United States-led invasion of Grenada, a Caribbean island nation with a population of about 100,000 located north of Venezuela. Triggered by a military coup which had ousted a four-year revolutionary government, the invasion...

     Grenada
    Grenada
    Grenada is an island country and Commonwealth Realm consisting of the island of Grenada and six smaller islands at the southern end of the Grenadines in the southeastern Caribbean Sea...

     in 1983. The Iran-Contra affair
    Iran-Contra Affair
    The Iran–Contra affair , also referred to as Irangate, Contragate or Iran-Contra-Gate, was a political scandal in the United States that came to light in November 1986. During the Reagan administration, senior Reagan administration officials and President Reagan secretly facilitated the sale of...

     erupted which involved U.S. interventionism in Nicaragua
    Nicaragua
    Nicaragua is the largest country in the Central American American isthmus, bordered by Honduras to the north and Costa Rica to the south. The country is situated between 11 and 14 degrees north of the Equator in the Northern Hemisphere, which places it entirely within the tropics. The Pacific Ocean...

    , resulting in members of the U.S. government being indicted in 1986. U.S. military action began against Panama
    Panama
    Panama , officially the Republic of Panama , is the southernmost country of Central America. Situated on the isthmus connecting North and South America, it is bordered by Costa Rica to the northwest, Colombia to the southeast, the Caribbean Sea to the north and the Pacific Ocean to the south. The...

     in December 1989 to overthrow its president, Manuel Noriega
    Manuel Noriega
    Manuel Antonio Noriega Moreno is a Panamanian politician and soldier. He was military dictator of Panama from 1983 to 1989.The 1989 invasion of Panama by the United States removed him from power; he was captured, detained as a prisoner of war, and flown to the United States. Noriega was tried on...

    .
  • Battle of Cuito Cuanavale
    Battle of Cuito Cuanavale
    The Battle of Cuito Cuanavale in 1987/88 was an important episode in the Angolan Civil War . Between 9 September and 7 October 1987, the Angolan Army , in an attempt to finally subdue the Angolan insurgent movement UNITA in south-eastern Angola, was decisively repelled in a series of battles at the...

     took place as part of the Angolan civil war
    Angolan Civil War
    The Angolan Civil War was a major civil conflict in the Southern African state of Angola, beginning in 1975 and continuing, with some interludes, until 2002. The war began immediately after Angola became independent from Portugal in November 1975. Prior to this, a decolonisation conflict had taken...

     and South African Border War
    South African Border War
    The South African Border War, commonly referred to as the Angolan Bush War in South Africa, was a conflict that took place from 1966 to 1989 in South-West Africa and Angola between South Africa and its allied forces on the one side and the Angolan government, South-West Africa People's...

     from 1987 to 1988. The battle involved the largest fighting in Africa since World War II between military forces from Angola
    Angola
    Angola, officially the Republic of Angola , is a country in south-central Africa bordered by Namibia on the south, the Democratic Republic of the Congo on the north, and Zambia on the east; its west coast is on the Atlantic Ocean with Luanda as its capital city...

    , Cuba
    Cuba
    The Republic of Cuba is an island nation in the Caribbean. The nation of Cuba consists of the main island of Cuba, the Isla de la Juventud, and several archipelagos. Havana is the largest city in Cuba and the country's capital. Santiago de Cuba is the second largest city...

     (expeditionary forces), and Namibia
    Namibia
    Namibia, officially the Republic of Namibia , is a country in southern Africa whose western border is the Atlantic Ocean. It shares land borders with Angola and Zambia to the north, Botswana to the east and South Africa to the south and east. It gained independence from South Africa on 21 March...

     versus military forces from South Africa and the dissident Angolan UNITA
    UNITA
    The National Union for the Total Independence of Angola is the second-largest political party in Angola. Founded in 1966, UNITA fought with the Popular Movement for the Liberation of Angola in the Angolan War for Independence and then against the MPLA in the ensuing civil war .The war was one...

     organization.
  • The Nagorno-Karabakh War
    Nagorno-Karabakh War
    The Nagorno-Karabakh War was an armed conflict that took place from February 1988 to May 1994, in the small enclave of Nagorno-Karabakh in southwestern Azerbaijan, between the majority ethnic Armenians of Nagorno-Karabakh backed by the Republic of Armenia, and the Republic of Azerbaijan...

     between Azerbaijan
    Azerbaijan
    Azerbaijan , officially the Republic of Azerbaijan is the largest country in the Caucasus region of Eurasia. Located at the crossroads of Western Asia and Eastern Europe, it is bounded by the Caspian Sea to the east, Russia to the north, Georgia to the northwest, Armenia to the west, and Iran to...

     and the Armenia
    Armenia
    Armenia , officially the Republic of Armenia , is a landlocked mountainous country in the Caucasus region of Eurasia...

     started in 1988 and lasted six years.

Civil wars and guerrilla wars


The most notable Internal conflicts of the decade include:
  • The Tiananmen Square protests of 1989
    Tiananmen Square protests of 1989
    The Tiananmen Square protests of 1989, also known as the June Fourth Incident in Chinese , were a series of demonstrations in and near Tiananmen Square in Beijing in the People's Republic of China beginning on 15 April 1989...

     occurred in the People's Republic of China in 1989, in which pro-democracy protestors demanded political reform. The protests were crushed by the People's Liberation Army.
  • The First Intifada
    First Intifada
    The First Intifada was a Palestinian uprising against the Israeli occupation of the Palestinian Territories. The uprising began in the Jabalia refugee camp and quickly spread throughout Gaza, the West Bank and East Jerusalem....

     (First Uprising) in the Gaza Strip
    Gaza Strip
    thumb|Gaza city skylineThe Gaza Strip lies on the Eastern coast of the Mediterranean Sea. The Strip borders Egypt on the southwest and Israel on the south, east and north. It is about long, and between 6 and 12 kilometres wide, with a total area of...

     and West Bank
    West Bank
    The West Bank ) of the Jordan River is the landlocked geographical eastern part of the Palestinian territories located in Western Asia. To the west, north, and south, the West Bank shares borders with the state of Israel. To the east, across the Jordan River, lies the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan...

     began in 1987 when Palestinian Arabs mounted large-scale protests against the Israeli military presence in the Gaza Strip and West Bank, which the Palestinians claim as their own. The Intifada soon became violent as the Israeli army and Palestinian militants fought for control over the disputed territories. The First Intifada would continue until peace negotiations began between the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO) and the Israeli government in 1993.
  • Lebanese Civil War
    Lebanese Civil War
    The Lebanese Civil War was a multifaceted civil war in Lebanon. The war lasted from 1975 to 1990 and resulted in an estimated 150,000 to 230,000 civilian fatalities. Another one million people were wounded, and today approximately 350,000 people remain displaced. There was also a mass exodus of...

     (1975–1990) - Throughout the decade, Lebanon was engulfed in civil war between Islamic and Christian factions.
  • The Kanak Socialist National Liberation Front
    Kanak Socialist National Liberation Front
    The Kanak and Socialist National Liberation Front is a militant socialist pro-independence alliance of political parties in New Caledonia. It was founded in 1984 at a congress of various political parties, mainly indigenous but also of disgruntled and progressive New Caledonians of European...

     began a violent campaign for independence in New Caledonia
    New Caledonia
    New Caledonia is a special collectivity of France located in the southwest Pacific Ocean, east of Australia and about from Metropolitan France. The archipelago, part of the Melanesia subregion, includes the main island of Grande Terre, the Loyalty Islands, the Belep archipelago, the Isle of...

    .
  • Greenpeace
    Greenpeace
    Greenpeace is a non-governmental environmental organization with offices in over forty countries and with an international coordinating body in Amsterdam, The Netherlands...

    's attempts to monitor French nuclear testing on Mururoa were halted by the sinking of the Rainbow Warrior
    Rainbow Warrior (1978)
    The Rainbow Warrior was a former UK Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food trawler later purchased by the environmental organisation Greenpeace...

    .
  • The Second Sudanese Civil War
    Second Sudanese Civil War
    The Second Sudanese Civil War started in 1983, although it was largely a continuation of the First Sudanese Civil War of 1955 to 1972. Although it originated in southern Sudan, the civil war spread to the Nuba mountains and Blue Nile by the end of the 1980s....

     erupts in 1983 between the Muslim
    Muslim
    A Muslim, also spelled Moslem, is an adherent of Islam, a monotheistic, Abrahamic religion based on the Quran, which Muslims consider the verbatim word of God as revealed to prophet Muhammad. "Muslim" is the Arabic term for "submitter" .Muslims believe that God is one and incomparable...

     government of Sudan
    Sudan
    Sudan , officially the Republic of the Sudan , is a country in North Africa, sometimes considered part of the Middle East politically. It is bordered by Egypt to the north, the Red Sea to the northeast, Eritrea and Ethiopia to the east, South Sudan to the south, the Central African Republic to the...

     in the north and non-Muslim rebel secessionists in Southern Sudan. The conflict continues through the present day Darfur genocide.
  • Peru
    Peru
    Peru , officially the Republic of Peru , is a country in western South America. It is bordered on the north by Ecuador and Colombia, on the east by Brazil, on the southeast by Bolivia, on the south by Chile, and on the west by the Pacific Ocean....

     faced the beginning of internal conflict
    Internal conflict in Peru
    It has been estimated that nearly 70,000 people died in the internal conflict in Peru that started in 1980 and, although still ongoing, had greatly wound down by 2000. The principal actors in the war were the Shining Path , the Túpac Amaru Revolutionary Movement and the government of Peru.A great...

     by the communist Túpac Amaru Revolutionary Movement
    Túpac Amaru Revolutionary Movement
    The Túpac Amaru Revolutionary Movement was a Marxist revolutionary group active in Peru from the early 1980s to 1997 and one of the main actors in the internal conflict in Peru...

     in 1980 that would continue until the end of the 1990s.
  • Haiti
    Haiti
    Haiti , officially the Republic of Haiti , is a Caribbean country. It occupies the western, smaller portion of the island of Hispaniola, in the Greater Antillean archipelago, which it shares with the Dominican Republic. Ayiti was the indigenous Taíno or Amerindian name for the island...

    an dictator
    Dictator
    A dictator is a ruler who assumes sole and absolute power but without hereditary ascension such as an absolute monarch. When other states call the head of state of a particular state a dictator, that state is called a dictatorship...

     Jean-Claude Duvalier
    Jean-Claude Duvalier
    Jean-Claude Duvalier, nicknamed "Bébé Doc" or "Baby Doc" was the President of Haiti from 1971 until his overthrow by a popular uprising in 1986. He succeeded his father, François "Papa Doc" Duvalier, as the ruler of Haiti upon his father's death in 1971...

     was overthrown by a popular uprising on February 6, 1986.

Coups



The most prominent coups d'état of the decade include:
  • Nigeria
    Nigeria
    Nigeria , officially the Federal Republic of Nigeria, is a federal constitutional republic comprising 36 states and its Federal Capital Territory, Abuja. The country is located in West Africa and shares land borders with the Republic of Benin in the west, Chad and Cameroon in the east, and Niger in...

     suffered multiple military coups in 1983 and 1985.
  • Sitiveni Rabuka
    Sitiveni Rabuka
    Major-General Sitiveni Ligamamada Rabuka, OBE, MSD, OStJ, is best known as the instigator of two military coups that shook Fiji in 1987. He was later democratically elected the third Prime Minister, serving from 1992 to 1999...

     staged two military coups in Fiji in 1987, and declared the country a republic
    Republic
    A republic is a form of government in which the people, or some significant portion of them, have supreme control over the government and where offices of state are elected or chosen by elected people. In modern times, a common simplified definition of a republic is a government where the head of...

     the same year.

Nuclear threats


  • Operation Opera
    Operation Opera
    Operation Babylon was a surprise Israeli air strike carried out on June 7, 1981, that destroyed a nuclear reactor under construction 17 kilometers southeast of Baghdad, Iraq....

     - a 1981 surprise Israel
    Israel
    The State of Israel is a parliamentary republic located in the Middle East, along the eastern shore of the Mediterranean Sea...

    i air strike that destroyed the Iraq
    Iraq
    Iraq ; officially the Republic of Iraq is a country in Western Asia spanning most of the northwestern end of the Zagros mountain range, the eastern part of the Syrian Desert and the northern part of the Arabian Desert....

    i nuclear reactor
    Nuclear reactor
    A nuclear reactor is a device to initiate and control a sustained nuclear chain reaction. Most commonly they are used for generating electricity and for the propulsion of ships. Usually heat from nuclear fission is passed to a working fluid , which runs through turbines that power either ship's...

     being constructed in Osirak. Israeli military intelligence
    Military intelligence
    Military intelligence is a military discipline that exploits a number of information collection and analysis approaches to provide guidance and direction to commanders in support of their decisions....

     assumed this was for the purpose of plutonium
    Plutonium
    Plutonium is a transuranic radioactive chemical element with the chemical symbol Pu and atomic number 94. It is an actinide metal of silvery-gray appearance that tarnishes when exposed to air, forming a dull coating when oxidized. The element normally exhibits six allotropes and four oxidation...

     production to further an Iraqi nuclear weapons program. Israeli intelligence also believed that the summer of 1981 would be the last chance to destroy the reactor before it would be loaded with nuclear fuel
    Nuclear fuel
    Nuclear fuel is a material that can be 'consumed' by fission or fusion to derive nuclear energy. Nuclear fuels are the most dense sources of energy available...

    .
  • President Reagan's decision to station intermediate-range nuclear missiles in Western Europe provoked mass protests involving more than one million people.

Decolonization and independence

  • Canada gained official independence from the United Kingdom with a new Constitution on 17 April 1982, authorized by the signature by Elizabeth II. This act severed all political dependencies of the United Kingdom in Canada (although the Queen remained the titular head of state).
  • In 1986, Australia and the United Kingdom fully separated Australia's governments from the influence of the British Parliament, resulting in a consolidation of Australia's independence that had been granted a century before.
  • In 1986, New Zealand and the United Kingdom fully separated New Zealand's governments from the influence of the British Parliament, resulting in New Zealand's full independence with the Constitution Act 1986 which also reorganised the government of New Zealand.
  • Independence was granted to Vanuatu
    Vanuatu
    Vanuatu , officially the Republic of Vanuatu , is an island nation located in the South Pacific Ocean. The archipelago, which is of volcanic origin, is some east of northern Australia, northeast of New Caledonia, west of Fiji, and southeast of the Solomon Islands, near New Guinea.Vanuatu was...

     from the British/French condonimum (1980), Kiribati
    Kiribati
    Kiribati , officially the Republic of Kiribati, is an island nation located in the central tropical Pacific Ocean. The permanent population exceeds just over 100,000 , and is composed of 32 atolls and one raised coral island, dispersed over 3.5 million square kilometres, straddling the...

     from joint US-British government (1981) and Palau
    Palau
    Palau , officially the Republic of Palau , is an island nation in the Pacific Ocean, east of the Philippines and south of Tokyo. In 1978, after three decades as being part of the United Nations trusteeship, Palau chose independence instead of becoming part of the Federated States of Micronesia, a...

     from the United States (1986).
  • Zimbabwe
    Zimbabwe
    Zimbabwe is a landlocked country located in the southern part of the African continent, between the Zambezi and Limpopo rivers. It is bordered by South Africa to the south, Botswana to the southwest, Zambia and a tip of Namibia to the northwest and Mozambique to the east. Zimbabwe has three...

     becomes independent from official colonial rule of the United Kingdom in 1980.
  • Independence was awarded to Antigua and Barbuda
    Antigua and Barbuda
    Antigua and Barbuda is a twin-island nation lying between the Caribbean Sea and the Atlantic Ocean. It consists of two major inhabited islands, Antigua and Barbuda, and a number of smaller islands...

    , Belize
    Belize
    Belize is a constitutional monarchy and the northernmost country in Central America. Belize has a diverse society, comprising many cultures and languages. Even though Kriol and Spanish are spoken among the population, Belize is the only country in Central America where English is the official...

     (both 1981), and Saint Kitts and Nevis
    Saint Kitts and Nevis
    The Federation of Saint Kitts and Nevis , located in the Leeward Islands, is a federal two-island nation in the West Indies. It is the smallest sovereign state in the Americas, in both area and population....

     (1983) of the Caribbean; and Brunei
    Brunei
    Brunei , officially the State of Brunei Darussalam or the Nation of Brunei, the Abode of Peace , is a sovereign state located on the north coast of the island of Borneo, in Southeast Asia...

     of Southeast Asia in 1984

Prominent political events


Americas

  • Ronald Reagan
    Ronald Reagan
    Ronald Wilson Reagan was the 40th President of the United States , the 33rd Governor of California and, prior to that, a radio, film and television actor....

     was elected U.S. President in 1980. In international affairs, Reagan pursued a hardline policy towards preventing the spread of communism, initiating a considerable buildup of U.S. military power to challenge the Soviet Union. He further directly challenges the Iron Curtain
    Iron Curtain
    The concept of the Iron Curtain symbolized the ideological fighting and physical boundary dividing Europe into two separate areas from the end of World War II in 1945 until the end of the Cold War in 1989...

     by demanding that the Soviet Union dismantle the Berlin Wall
    Berlin Wall
    The Berlin Wall was a barrier constructed by the German Democratic Republic starting on 13 August 1961, that completely cut off West Berlin from surrounding East Germany and from East Berlin...

    .
  • The Reagan Administration
    Reagan Administration
    The United States presidency of Ronald Reagan, also known as the Reagan administration, was a Republican administration headed by Ronald Reagan from January 20, 1981, to January 20, 1989....

     accelerated the War on Drugs
    War on Drugs
    The War on Drugs is a campaign of prohibition and foreign military aid and military intervention being undertaken by the United States government, with the assistance of participating countries, intended to both define and reduce the illegal drug trade...

    , publicized through anti-drug campaigns including the Just Say No
    Just Say No
    "Just Say No" was an advertising campaign, part of the U.S. "War on Drugs", prevalent during the 1980s and early 1990s, to discourage children from engaging in recreational drug use by offering various ways of saying no. Eventually, this also expanded the realm of "Just Say No" to violence and...

     campaign of First Lady Nancy Reagan
    Nancy Reagan
    Nancy Davis Reagan is the widow of former United States President Ronald Reagan and was First Lady of the United States from 1981 to 1989....

    . Drugs became a serious problem in the '80s. Cocaine was popular among celebrities and the young, sophisticated "yuppies", while crack, a cheaper and more potent offshoot of the drug, turned the inner cities into war zones.
  • Political unrest in the province of Quebec
    Quebec
    Quebec or is a province in east-central Canada. It is the only Canadian province with a predominantly French-speaking population and the only one whose sole official language is French at the provincial level....

    , which, due to the many differences between the dominant francophone population and the anglophone minority, and also to francophone rights in the predominantly English
    Canadian English
    Canadian English is the variety of English spoken in Canada. English is the first language, or "mother tongue", of approximately 24 million Canadians , and more than 28 million are fluent in the language...

    -speaking Canada, came to a head in 1980 when the provincial government called a public referendum on partial separation from the rest of Canada. The referendum ended with the "no" side winning majority (59.56% no, 40.44% yes).
  • Military dictatorship
    Military dictatorship
    A military dictatorship is a form of government where in the political power resides with the military. It is similar but not identical to a stratocracy, a state ruled directly by the military....

    s give way to democracy in Argentina (1983), Uruguay (1984–5), Brazil (1985–8) and Chile
    Chile
    Chile ,officially the Republic of Chile , is a country in South America occupying a long, narrow coastal strip between the Andes mountains to the east and the Pacific Ocean to the west. It borders Peru to the north, Bolivia to the northeast, Argentina to the east, and the Drake Passage in the far...

     (1988–9).


Europe

  • The European Community's enlargement
    Enlargement of the European Union
    The Enlargement of the European Union is the process of expanding the European Union through the accession of new member states. This process began with the Inner Six, who founded the European Coal and Steel Community in 1952...

     continued with the accession of Greece in 1981 and Spain and Portugal in 1986.
  • Significant political reforms occurred in a number of communist countries in eastern Europe as the populations of these countries grew increasingly hostile and politically active in opposing communist governments. These reforms included attempts to increase individual liberties and market liberalization, and promises of democratic renewal. The collapse of communism in eastern Europe was generally peaceful, the exception being Romania, who's leader Nicolae Ceaucescu tried to keep the people isolated from the events happening outside the country. While making a speech in Bucharest in December 1989, he was booed and shouted down by the crowd, and then tried to flee the city with his wife Elena. Two days later, they were captured, charged with genocide, and shot on Christmas.
  • In Yugoslavia
    Yugoslavia
    Yugoslavia refers to three political entities that existed successively on the western part of the Balkans during most of the 20th century....

    , following the death of communist leader Josip Broz Tito
    Josip Broz Tito
    Marshal Josip Broz Tito – 4 May 1980) was a Yugoslav revolutionary and statesman. While his presidency has been criticized as authoritarian, Tito was a popular public figure both in Yugoslavia and abroad, viewed as a unifying symbol for the nations of the Yugoslav federation...

     in May 1980, the trend of political reform of the communist system occurred along with a trend towards ethnic nationalism
    Ethnic nationalism
    Ethnic nationalism is a form of nationalism wherein the "nation" is defined in terms of ethnicity. Whatever specific ethnicity is involved, ethnic nationalism always includes some element of descent from previous generations and the implied claim of ethnic essentialism, i.e...

     and inter-ethnic hostility, especially in Serbia, beginning with the 1986 Memorandum of the Serbian Academy of Sciences and Arts
    Memorandum of the Serbian Academy of Sciences and Arts
    The Memorandum of the Serbian Academy of Sciences and Arts was a draft document produced by a 14-member committee composed by members of the Serbian Academy of Sciences and Arts from 1985 to 1986, presided by Kosta Mihailović...

     followed by the agenda of Serbian communist leader Slobodan Milošević
    Slobodan Milošević
    Slobodan Milošević was President of Serbia and Yugoslavia. He served as the President of Socialist Republic of Serbia and Republic of Serbia from 1989 until 1997 in three terms and as President of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia from 1997 to 2000...

     who aggressively pushed for increased political influence of Serbs in the late 1980s, condemning non-Serb Yugoslav politicians who challenged his agenda as being enemies of Serbs.
  • There was continuing civil strife in Northern Ireland, including the adoption of hunger strikes by Irish Republican Army prisoners seeking the reintroduction of political status.
  • Mikhail Gorbachev
    Mikhail Gorbachev
    Mikhail Sergeyevich Gorbachev is a former Soviet statesman, having served as General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union from 1985 until 1991, and as the last head of state of the USSR, having served from 1988 until its dissolution in 1991...

     became leader of the Soviet Union in 1985, and initiated major reforms to the Soviet Union's government through increasing the rights of expressing political dissent and allowing some democratic elections (though maintaining Communist dominance). Gorbachev pursued negotiation with the United States to decrease tensions and eventually end the Cold War
    Cold War
    The Cold War was the continuing state from roughly 1946 to 1991 of political conflict, military tension, proxy wars, and economic competition between the Communist World—primarily the Soviet Union and its satellite states and allies—and the powers of the Western world, primarily the United States...

    .
  • At the end of the decade, the fall of the Berlin Wall
    Berlin Wall
    The Berlin Wall was a barrier constructed by the German Democratic Republic starting on 13 August 1961, that completely cut off West Berlin from surrounding East Germany and from East Berlin...

     in 1989 would be followed in 1990 by the German reunification
    German reunification
    German reunification was the process in 1990 in which the German Democratic Republic joined the Federal Republic of Germany , and when Berlin reunited into a single city, as provided by its then Grundgesetz constitution Article 23. The start of this process is commonly referred by Germans as die...

    . During the course of 1989, most of the communist governments in Eastern Europe collapsed.
  • The United Kingdom was governed by the Conservative Party
    Conservative Party (UK)
    The Conservative Party, formally the Conservative and Unionist Party, is a centre-right political party in the United Kingdom that adheres to the philosophies of conservatism and British unionism. It is the largest political party in the UK, and is currently the largest single party in the House...

     under Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher
    Margaret Thatcher
    Margaret Hilda Thatcher, Baroness Thatcher, was Prime Minister of the United Kingdom from 1979 to 1990...

    , the first female leader of a western country. Under her Premiership
    Premiership of Margaret Thatcher
    The Premiership of Margaret Thatcher began on 4 May 1979, with a mandate to reverse the UK's economic decline and to reduce the role of the state in the economy...

    , the party introduced widespread economic reforms including the privatisation of industries and the de-regulation of stock markets echoing similar reforms of U.S. President
    President of the United States
    The President of the United States of America is the head of state and head of government of the United States. The president leads the executive branch of the federal government and is the commander-in-chief of the United States Armed Forces....

     Ronald Reagan
    Ronald Reagan
    Ronald Wilson Reagan was the 40th President of the United States , the 33rd Governor of California and, prior to that, a radio, film and television actor....

    . She was also a staunch opponent of communism earning her the nickname 'The Iron Lady'.
  • In November 1982, Leonid Brezhnev
    Leonid Brezhnev
    Leonid Ilyich Brezhnev  – 10 November 1982) was the General Secretary of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union , presiding over the country from 1964 until his death in 1982. His eighteen-year term as General Secretary was second only to that of Joseph Stalin in...

    , who had led the Soviet Union since 1964, died. He was followed in quick succession by Yuri Andropov
    Yuri Andropov
    Yuri Vladimirovich Andropov was a Soviet politician and the General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union from 12 November 1982 until his death fifteen months later.-Early life:...

    , the former KGB chief, and Konstantin Chernenko
    Konstantin Chernenko
    Konstantin Ustinovich Chernenko was a Soviet politician and the fifth General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union. He led the Soviet Union from 13 February 1984 until his death thirteen months later, on 10 March 1985...

    , both of whom were in poor health during their short tenures in office.


Asia
  • South Korean president Chun Doo Hwan came to power at the end of 1979 and ruled as a dictator until his presidential term expired in 1987. He was responsible for the Kwangju Massacre in May 1980 when police and soldiers battled armed protesters. Relations with North Korea showed little sign of improvement during the 1980s. In 1983, when Chun was in Burma, a bomb apparently planted by North Korean agents killed a number of South Korean government officials. After leaving office, he was succeeded by Roh Tae Woo, the first democratic ruler of the country, which saw its international prestige greatly rise with hosting the Olympics in 1988. Roh pursued a policy of normalizing relations with China and the Soviet Union, but had to face militant left-wing student groups who demanded reunification with North Korea and the withdrawal of US troops.
  • In the Philippines, after almost 20 years of dictatorship, Philippine president Ferdinand Marcos
    Ferdinand Marcos
    Ferdinand Emmanuel Edralin Marcos, Sr. was a Filipino leader and an authoritarian President of the Philippines from 1965 to 1986. He was a lawyer, member of the Philippine House of Representatives and a member of the Philippine Senate...

     left the presidency and was replaced by Corazon Aquino
    Corazon Aquino
    Maria Corazon Sumulong Cojuangco-Aquino was the 11th President of the Philippines and the first woman to hold that office in Philippine history. She is best remembered for leading the 1986 People Power Revolution, which toppled Ferdinand Marcos and restored democracy in the Philippines...

     through the "People Power Revolution" from February 22 to 26, 1986. This has been considered by some a peaceful revolution despite the fact that the Armed Forces of the Philippines issued an order to disperse the crowds on EDSA (the main thoroughfare in Metro Manila).

Natural disasters


  • Mount St. Helens
    Mount St. Helens
    Mount St. Helens is an active stratovolcano located in Skamania County, Washington, in the Pacific Northwest region of the United States. It is south of Seattle, Washington and northeast of Portland, Oregon. Mount St. Helens takes its English name from the British diplomat Lord St Helens, a...

     erupted in Washington, U.S. on May 18, 1980, killing 57 people.
  • The 1989 Loma Prieta earthquake
    Loma Prieta earthquake
    The Loma Prieta earthquake, also known as the Quake of '89 and the World Series Earthquake, was a major earthquake that struck the San Francisco Bay Area of California on October 17, 1989, at 5:04 p.m. local time...

     struck the San Francisco Bay Area during the 1989 World Series
    1989 World Series
    †: Game 3 was originally slated for October 17 at 5:35 pm; however, it was postponed when an earthquake occurred at 5:04 pm.-Game 1:Saturday, October 14, 1989 at Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum in Oakland, California...

    , gaining worldwide attention. Sixty-five people were killed and thousands injured, with major structural damage on freeways and buildings and broken gas-line fires in San Francisco
    San Francisco, California
    San Francisco , officially the City and County of San Francisco, is the financial, cultural, and transportation center of the San Francisco Bay Area, a region of 7.15 million people which includes San Jose and Oakland...

    , California. The cost of the damage totaled $13 billion (1989 USD).
  • The US Drought of 1988
    US Drought of 1988
    The US Drought of 1988 was one of the worst droughts in US history. It was a multi-year drought which began in 1988 and continued into 1989. The drought caused $60 billion in damage...

     decimated the US with many parts of the country affected. This was the worst drought to hit the United States in many years. The drought caused $60 billion in damage (between $80 billion and $120 billion for 2008 USD). The concurrent heat wave
    Heat wave
    A heat wave is a prolonged period of excessively hot weather, which may be accompanied by high humidity. There is no universal definition of a heat wave; the term is relative to the usual weather in the area...

    s killed 5,800 to 17,000 people in the United States.
  • Hurricane Allen
    Hurricane Allen
    Hurricane Allen was the first and strongest hurricane of the 1980 Atlantic hurricane season. It was one of the strongest hurricanes in recorded history, one of the few hurricanes to reach Category 5 status on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Scale on three separate occasions, and spent more time...

     (1980), Hurricane Alicia
    Hurricane Alicia
    Hurricane Alicia was the costliest tropical cyclone in the Atlantic since Hurricane Agnes in 1972. Alicia was the third depression, the first tropical storm, and the only major hurricane of the 1983 Atlantic hurricane season...

     (1983), Hurricane Gilbert
    Hurricane Gilbert
    Hurricane Gilbert was an extremely powerful Cape Verde-type hurricane that formed during the 1988 Atlantic hurricane season and created widespread destruction in the Caribbean Sea and the Gulf of Mexico. It is the second most intense hurricane ever observed in the Atlantic basin behind only...

     (1988), Hurricane Joan (1988), and Hurricane Hugo
    Hurricane Hugo
    Hurricane Hugo was a classical, destructive and rare Cape Verde-type hurricane which struck the Caribbean islands of Guadeloupe, Montserrat, St. Croix, Puerto Rico and the USA mainland in South Carolina as a Category 4 hurricane during September of the 1989 Atlantic hurricane season...

     (1989) were some notably destructive Atlantic hurricanes of the 1980s.
  • Other natural disasters of the 1980s include the 1982–1983 El Niño which brought destructive weather to most of the world; the 1985 Mexico earthquake, which registered 8.1 on the Richter scale
    Richter magnitude scale
    The expression Richter magnitude scale refers to a number of ways to assign a single number to quantify the energy contained in an earthquake....

     and devastated Mexico City and other areas throughout central Mexico; the 1985 Nevado del Ruiz
    Nevado del Ruiz
    The Nevado del Ruiz, also known as La Mesa de Herveo or Kumanday in the language of the local pre-Columbian indigenous people, is a volcano located on the border of the departments of Caldas and Tolima in Colombia, about west of the capital city Bogotá. It is a stratovolcano, composed of many...

     lahar
    Lahar
    A lahar is a type of mudflow or debris flow composed of a slurry of pyroclastic material, rocky debris, and water. The material flows down from a volcano, typically along a river valley. The term is a shortened version of "berlahar" which originated in the Javanese language of...

     in Colombia
    Colombia
    Colombia, officially the Republic of Colombia , is a unitary constitutional republic comprising thirty-two departments. The country is located in northwestern South America, bordered to the east by Venezuela and Brazil; to the south by Ecuador and Peru; to the north by the Caribbean Sea; to the...

    ; the 1986 Lake Nyos
    Lake Nyos
    Lake Nyos is a crater lake in the Northwest Region of Cameroon, located about northwest of Yaoundé. Nyos is a deep lake high on the flank of an inactive volcano in the Oku volcanic plain along the Cameroon line of volcanic activity...

     limnic eruption
    Limnic eruption
    A limnic eruption, also referred to as a lake overturn, is a rare type of natural disaster in which carbon dioxide suddenly erupts from deep lake water, suffocating wildlife, livestock and humans. Such an eruption may also cause tsunamis in the lake as the rising CO2 displaces water. Scientists...

     in Cameroon
    Cameroon
    Cameroon, officially the Republic of Cameroon , is a country in west Central Africa. It is bordered by Nigeria to the west; Chad to the northeast; the Central African Republic to the east; and Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, and the Republic of the Congo to the south. Cameroon's coastline lies on the...

    ; and the 1988 Armenia
    Armenia
    Armenia , officially the Republic of Armenia , is a landlocked mountainous country in the Caucasus region of Eurasia...

    n earthquake, which rocked the Caucasus
    Caucasus
    The Caucasus, also Caucas or Caucasia , is a geopolitical region at the border of Europe and Asia, and situated between the Black and the Caspian sea...

     region of the USSR.

Non-natural disasters


  • In 1984, the Bhopal disaster
    Bhopal disaster
    The Bhopal disaster also known as Bhopal Gas Tragedy was a gas leak incident in India, considered one of the world's worst industrial catastrophes. It occurred on the night of December 2–3, 1984 at the Union Carbide India Limited pesticide plant in Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh, India...

     resulted from a toxic MIC
    Methyl isocyanate
    Methyl isocyanate is an organic compound with the molecular formula CH3NCO. Synonyms are isocyanatomethane, methyl carbylamine, and MIC. Methyl isocyanate is an intermediate chemical in the production of carbamate pesticides . It has also been used in the production of rubbers and adhesives...

     gas leak at the Union Carbide
    Union Carbide
    Union Carbide Corporation is a wholly owned subsidiary of The Dow Chemical Company. It currently employs more than 2,400 people. Union Carbide primarily produces chemicals and polymers that undergo one or more further conversions by customers before reaching consumers. Some are high-volume...

     plant in Bhopal, India, killing 3,000 immediately and ultimately claiming 15,000–20,000 lives.
  • On September 1, 1983, the Soviet Union shot down Korean Air Lines Flight 007, which was carrying 269 people.
  • Japan Air Lines Flight 123, carrying 524 people, crashed on August 12, 1985 while on a flight from Tokyo to Osaka killing 520 of the people on board. This was the worst ever single-plane crash.
  • In 1986, the NASA Space Shuttle Challenger
    Space Shuttle Challenger
    Space Shuttle Challenger was NASA's second Space Shuttle orbiter to be put into service, Columbia having been the first. The shuttle was built by Rockwell International's Space Transportation Systems Division in Downey, California...

     disintegrated
    Space Shuttle Challenger disaster
    The Space Shuttle Challenger disaster occurred on January 28, 1986, when Space Shuttle Challenger broke apart 73 seconds into its flight, leading to the deaths of its seven crew members. The spacecraft disintegrated over the Atlantic Ocean, off the coast of central Florida at 11:38 am EST...

     73 seconds after launch, killing all of the crew onboard. This was the first disaster involving the destruction of a NASA space shuttle. A faulty O-ring
    O-ring
    An O-ring, also known as a packing, or a toric joint, is a mechanical gasket in the shape of a torus; it is a loop of elastomer with a disc-shaped cross-section, designed to be seated in a groove and compressed during assembly between two or more parts, creating a seal at the interface.The O-ring...

     was the cause of the accident.
  • In 1986, the Chernobyl disaster
    Chernobyl disaster
    The Chernobyl disaster was a nuclear accident that occurred on 26 April 1986 at the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant in Ukraine , which was under the direct jurisdiction of the central authorities in Moscow...

    , a large-scale nuclear meltdown
    Nuclear meltdown
    Nuclear meltdown is an informal term for a severe nuclear reactor accident that results in core damage from overheating. The term is not officially defined by the International Atomic Energy Agency or by the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission...

     in the Ukrainian SSR, Soviet Union, spread a large amount of radioactive material across Europe, killing 47 people, dooming countless others to future radiation-related cancer, and causing the displacement of 300,000 people.
  • In 1989, the Exxon Valdez oil spill
    Exxon Valdez oil spill
    The Exxon Valdez oil spill occurred in Prince William Sound, Alaska, on March 24, 1989, when the Exxon Valdez, an oil tanker bound for Long Beach, California, struck Prince William Sound's Bligh Reef and spilled of crude oil. It is considered to be one of the most devastating human-caused...

     occurred in Alaska. Although not among the largest oil spills in history, its remote and sensitive location made it one of the most devastating ecological disasters ever.

Assaults




The 1980s were marked by several notable assassinations and assassination attempts:
  • Musician and former member of The Beatles
    The Beatles
    The Beatles were an English rock band, active throughout the 1960s and one of the most commercially successful and critically acclaimed acts in the history of popular music. Formed in Liverpool, by 1962 the group consisted of John Lennon , Paul McCartney , George Harrison and Ringo Starr...

     John Lennon
    John Lennon
    John Winston Lennon, MBE was an English musician and singer-songwriter who rose to worldwide fame as one of the founding members of The Beatles, one of the most commercially successful and critically acclaimed acts in the history of popular music...

     was assassinated in New York City on December 8, 1980.
  • Egyptian president Anwar Sadat
    Anwar Sadat
    Muhammad Anwar al-Sadat was the third President of Egypt, serving from 15 October 1970 until his assassination by fundamentalist army officers on 6 October 1981...

     was assassinated at a military parade in Cairo
    Cairo
    Cairo , is the capital of Egypt and the largest city in the Arab world and Africa, and the 16th largest metropolitan area in the world. Nicknamed "The City of a Thousand Minarets" for its preponderance of Islamic architecture, Cairo has long been a centre of the region's political and cultural life...

     on October 6, 1981.
  • Ronald Reagan was shot in Washington, D.C. on March 30, 1981 by John Hinckley, a mentally disturbed young man who also stalked Jodie Foster
    Jodie Foster
    Alicia Christian "Jodie" Foster is an American actress, film director, producer as well as a former child actress....

    . Reagan's press secretary James Brady
    James Brady
    James Scott "Jim" Brady is a former Assistant to the President and White House Press Secretary under U.S. President Ronald Reagan...

     was also shot, along with a police officer and a Secret Service agent. The latter two recovered, along with Reagan himself, but Brady used a wheelchair thereafter and would become an advocate of gun control.
  • Indian prime minister Indira Gandhi
    Indira Gandhi
    Indira Priyadarshini Gandhara was an Indian politician who served as the third Prime Minister of India for three consecutive terms and a fourth term . She was assassinated by Sikh extremists...

     was assassinated on October 31, 1984 by her own bodyguard
    Bodyguard
    A bodyguard is a type of security operative or government agent who protects a person—usually a famous, wealthy, or politically important figure—from assault, kidnapping, assassination, stalking, loss of confidential information, terrorist attack or other threats.Most important public figures such...

    s in response to the Indian Army's attack on Golden Temple to destroy Sikh
    Sikh
    A Sikh is a follower of Sikhism. It primarily originated in the 15th century in the Punjab region of South Asia. The term "Sikh" has its origin in Sanskrit term शिष्य , meaning "disciple, student" or शिक्ष , meaning "instruction"...

     Militant stronghold in Amritsar earlier in the decade.
  • American singer-songwriter and musician Marvin Gaye
    Marvin Gaye
    Marvin Pentz Gay, Jr. , better known by his stage name Marvin Gaye, was an American singer-songwriter and musician with a three-octave vocal range....

     was shot dead
    Death of Marvin Gaye
    On April 1, 1984, Marvin Gaye was fatally shot by his father, Marvin Gaye, Sr. in the West Adams district of Los Angeles at their house on Gramercy Place. Gaye was shot twice after an altercation he had with his father after intervening in an argument between the elder Gaye and his mother Alberta...

     by his father at his home in Los Angeles
    Los Ángeles
    Los Ángeles is the capital of the province of Biobío, in the commune of the same name, in Region VIII , in the center-south of Chile. It is located between the Laja and Biobío rivers. The population is 123,445 inhabitants...

     on April 1, 1984.
  • In 1984, there was an assassination attempt
    Brighton hotel bombing
    The Brighton hotel bombing happened on 12 October 1984 at the Grand Hotel in Brighton, England. The bomb was planted by Provisional Irish Republican Army member Patrick Magee, with the intention of assassinating Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher and her cabinet who were staying at the hotel for the...

     on the British Prime Minister
    Prime Minister of the United Kingdom
    The Prime Minister of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland is the Head of Her Majesty's Government in the United Kingdom. The Prime Minister and Cabinet are collectively accountable for their policies and actions to the Sovereign, to Parliament, to their political party and...

    , Margaret Thatcher
    Margaret Thatcher
    Margaret Hilda Thatcher, Baroness Thatcher, was Prime Minister of the United Kingdom from 1979 to 1990...

     and the Conservative Government by the IRA
    Provisional Irish Republican Army
    The Provisional Irish Republican Army is an Irish republican paramilitary organisation whose aim was to remove Northern Ireland from the United Kingdom and bring about a socialist republic within a united Ireland by force of arms and political persuasion...

    .
  • Swedish Prime Minister Olof Palme
    Olof Palme
    Sven Olof Joachim Palme was a Swedish politician. A long-time protegé of Prime Minister Tage Erlander, Palme led the Swedish Social Democratic Party from 1969 to his assassination, and was a two-term Prime Minister of Sweden, heading a Privy Council Government from 1969 to 1976 and a cabinet...

     was assassinated in February 1986. The assassin has never been identified.
  • In May 1981, there was an assassination attempt
    1981 Pope John Paul II assassination attempt
    The first attempted assassination of Pope John Paul II took place on Wednesday, May 13, 1981, in St. Peter's Square at Vatican City. The Pope was shot and critically wounded by Mehmet Ali Ağca while he was entering the square. The Pope was struck 4 times, and suffered severe blood loss. Ağca was...

     on Pope
    Pope
    The Pope is the Bishop of Rome, a position that makes him the leader of the worldwide Catholic Church . In the Catholic Church, the Pope is regarded as the successor of Saint Peter, the Apostle...

     John Paul II
    Pope John Paul II
    Blessed Pope John Paul II , born Karol Józef Wojtyła , reigned as Pope of the Catholic Church and Sovereign of Vatican City from 16 October 1978 until his death on 2 April 2005, at of age. His was the second-longest documented pontificate, which lasted ; only Pope Pius IX ...

     in Saint Peter's Square
    Saint Peter's Square
    Saint Peter's Square is located directly in front of St. Peter's Basilica in Vatican City, the papal enclave within Rome .-History of St...

    . The assassin was a Turkish man named Mehmet Ali Agca
    Mehmet Ali Agca
    Mehmet Ali Ağca is a Turkish assassin who murdered left-wing journalist Abdi İpekçi on February 1, 1979 and later shot and wounded Pope John Paul II on May 13, 1981, after escaping from a Turkish prison. After serving 19 years of imprisonment in Italy, he was deported to Turkey, where he served a...

    , who was subsequently sentenced to life in prison, but would be pardoned in 2000. At the time, it was widely believed that he was an agent of the Soviet Union or Bulgaria
    Bulgaria
    Bulgaria , officially the Republic of Bulgaria , is a parliamentary democracy within a unitary constitutional republic in Southeast Europe. The country borders Romania to the north, Serbia and Macedonia to the west, Greece and Turkey to the south, as well as the Black Sea to the east...

    , due to the Pope's vocal anti-communist stance. Agca himself told dozens of conflicting stories over the years, and his motive remains unclear.


Electronics and computers


Arcade game
Arcade game
An arcade game is a coin-operated entertainment machine, usually installed in public businesses such as restaurants, bars, and amusement arcades. Most arcade games are video games, pinball machines, electro-mechanical games, redemption games, and merchandisers...

s and video games had been growing in popularity since the late 1970s, and by 1982 were a major industry. But a variety of factors, including a glut of low-quality games and the rise of home computers, caused a tremendous crash in late 1983. For the next three years, the video game market practically ceased to exist in the US. But in the second half of the decade, it would be revived by Nintendo
Nintendo
is a multinational corporation located in Kyoto, Japan. Founded on September 23, 1889 by Fusajiro Yamauchi, it produced handmade hanafuda cards. By 1963, the company had tried several small niche businesses, such as a cab company and a love hotel....

, whose Famicom console had been enjoying considerable success in Japan since 1983. Renamed the Nintendo Entertainment System
Nintendo Entertainment System
The Nintendo Entertainment System is an 8-bit video game console that was released by Nintendo in North America during 1985, in Europe during 1986 and Australia in 1987...

, it would claim 90% of the American video game market by 1989.

Computers
Personal computer
A personal computer is any general-purpose computer whose size, capabilities, and original sales price make it useful for individuals, and which is intended to be operated directly by an end-user with no intervening computer operator...

 experienced explosive growth in the '80s, going from being a toy for electronics hobbyists to a full-fledged industry. The IBM PC, launched in 1981, become the dominant computer for professional users. Commodore
Commodore International
Commodore is the commonly used name for Commodore Business Machines , the U.S.-based home computer manufacturer and electronics manufacturer headquartered in West Chester, Pennsylvania, which also housed Commodore's corporate parent company, Commodore International Limited...

 created the most popular home computers of both 8-bit and 16-bit generations. MSX
MSX
MSX was the name of a standardized home computer architecture in the 1980s conceived by Kazuhiko Nishi, then Vice-president at Microsoft Japan and Director at ASCII Corporation...

 standard was the dominant computer platform in Japan
Japan
Japan is an island nation in East Asia. Located in the Pacific Ocean, it lies to the east of the Sea of Japan, China, North Korea, South Korea and Russia, stretching from the Sea of Okhotsk in the north to the East China Sea and Taiwan in the south...

. Apple was committed to resisting the tide of IBM PC clones, while introducing the first Macintosh computer in 1984. It was the first commercially successful personal computer to use a graphical user interface
Graphical user interface
In computing, a graphical user interface is a type of user interface that allows users to interact with electronic devices with images rather than text commands. GUIs can be used in computers, hand-held devices such as MP3 players, portable media players or gaming devices, household appliances and...

 and mouse
Mouse (computing)
In computing, a mouse is a pointing device that functions by detecting two-dimensional motion relative to its supporting surface. Physically, a mouse consists of an object held under one of the user's hands, with one or more buttons...

, which started to become general features in computers after the middle of the decade.
Walkman
Walkman
Walkman is a Sony brand tradename originally used for portable audio cassette, and now used to market Sony's portable audio and video players as well as a line of Sony Ericsson mobile phones...

 and Boombox
Boombox
Boombox is a colloquial expression for a portable cassette or CD player. Other terms known are ghetto blaster, jambox, or radio-cassette. It is a device capable of receiving radio stations and playing recorded music , usually at relatively high volume...

s, introduced during the late 1970s, became very popular and had a profound impact on the Music industry and youth culture. Consumer VCRs and video rental stores became commonplace as vhs
VHS
The Video Home System is a consumer-level analog recording videocassette standard developed by Victor Company of Japan ....

 won out over the competing betamax
Betamax
Betamax was a consumer-level analog videocassette magnetic tape recording format developed by Sony, released on May 10, 1975. The cassettes contain -wide videotape in a design similar to the earlier, professional wide, U-matic format...

 standard. In addition, in the early 1980s various companies began selling compact, modestly priced synthesizers to the public. This, along with the development of Musical Instrument Digital Interface
Musical Instrument Digital Interface
MIDI is an industry-standard protocol, first defined in 1982 by Gordon Hall, that enables electronic musical instruments , computers and other electronic equipment to communicate and synchronize with each other...

 (MIDI), made it easier to integrate and synchronize synthesizers and other electronic instruments for use in musical composition

Space exploration


American interplanetary probes continued in the '80s, the Voyager duo being the most famous. After making a flyby of Jupiter in 1979, they visited Saturn in 1980–1981. Voyager 2 reached Uranus in 1986 (just a few days before the Challenger disaster), and Neptune in 1989 before the probes exited the solar system.

No American probes were launched to Mars in the 1980s, and the Viking
Viking program
The Viking program consisted of a pair of American space probes sent to Mars, Viking 1 and Viking 2. Each spacecraft was composed of two main parts, an orbiter designed to photograph the surface of Mars from orbit, and a lander designed to study the planet from the surface...

 probes, launched there in 1975, completed their operations by 1982. The Soviets launched two Mars probes in 1988, but they failed ignominiously.

The arrival of Halley's Comet in 1986 was met by a series of American, Soviet, Japanese, and ESA probes.

After a five-year hiatus, manned American space flights resumed with the launch of the space shuttle Columbia in April 1981. The shuttle program progressed smoothly from there, with three more orbiters entering service in 1983–1985. But that all came to an end with the tragic loss of the Challenger
Space Shuttle Challenger
Space Shuttle Challenger was NASA's second Space Shuttle orbiter to be put into service, Columbia having been the first. The shuttle was built by Rockwell International's Space Transportation Systems Division in Downey, California...

 on January 28, 1986, taking with it seven astronauts, including Christia McAuliffe, who was to have been the first teacher in space. In full view of the world, a faulty O-ring on the right solid rocket booster burned through the external fuel tank and caused it to explode, destroying the shuttle in the process. Extensive efforts were made to improve NASA
NASA
The National Aeronautics and Space Administration is the agency of the United States government that is responsible for the nation's civilian space program and for aeronautics and aerospace research...

's increasingly careless management practices, and to make the shuttle safer. Flights resumed with the launch of Discovery in September 1988.

The Soviet manned program went well during the decade, experiencing only minor setbacks. The Salyut 6 space station, launched in 1977, was replaced by Salyut 7 in 1982. Then came Mir in 1986, which ended up operating for more than a decade, and was destined to be the last in the line of Soviet space stations that had begun in 1971. One of the Soviet Union's last "superprojects" was the Buran space shuttle; it was only used once, in 1988.

Automobiles


The American auto industry began the 1980s in a thoroughly grim situation, faced with poor quality control, rising import competition, and a severe economic downturn. Chrysler
Chrysler
Chrysler Group LLC is a multinational automaker headquartered in Auburn Hills, Michigan, USA. Chrysler was first organized as the Chrysler Corporation in 1925....

 and American Motors
American Motors
American Motors Corporation was an American automobile company formed by the 1954 merger of Nash-Kelvinator Corporation and Hudson Motor Car Company. At the time, it was the largest corporate merger in U.S. history.George W...

 (AMC) were near bankruptcy, and Ford was little better off. Only GM continued with business as usual. But the auto makers recovered with the economy by 1983, and in 1985 auto sales in the United States hit a new record. However, the Japanese were now a major presence, and would begin manufacturing cars in the US to get around tariffs. In 1986, Hyundai became the first Korean auto maker to enter the American market. In the same year, the Yugoslavian-built Yugo
Zastava Koral
The Zastava Koral , also known simply as the Yugo, was a subcompact car built by the Zastava corporation. The first Yugo 45 was handmade on 2 October 1978....

 was brought to the US, but the car was so small and cheap, that it became the subject of countless jokes. It was sold up to 1991, when economic sanctions against Yugoslavia forced its withdrawal from the American market.

As the decade progressed, cars became smaller and more efficient in design. In 1983, Ford design teams began revolutionizing existing automobiles with a new philosophy which was called "Aero". The idea was to design cars to incorporate pro-aerodynamic round styling to increase airflow and decrease drag while in motion. The Thunderbird was one of the first cars to receive these design changes and it was an instant hit. Later, in 1985, Ford released the Taurus which was considered a dramatic step in automobile design and its aerodynamic style was so popular and revolutionary at the time that other manufacturers scrambled to emulate it which eventually caused a design revolution which is still evident to the present day which increasingly round and aerodynamic designed being implemented by many companies worldwide.

GM began suffering significant losses in the late-1980s, partially the result of chairman Roger Smith's restructuring attempts, and partially because of increasingly stale and unappealing cars. For example, "yuppies" increasingly favored European luxury cars to Cadillac. In 1985, GM started Saturn (the first new American make since the Edsel), with the goal of producing high-quality import fighters. Production would not begin until 1990, however.

Chrysler introduced its new compact, front-wheel drive K-cars in 1981. Under the leadership of Lee Iacocca, the company turned a profit again the following year, and by 1983 paid off its government loans. A seemingly endless succession of K-cars followed. But the biggest success was the arrival of the minivans in 1984. These proved a huge hit, and despite competition, they would dominate the van market for more than a decade. And in 1987, Chrysler purchased the Italian makes of Lamborghini and Maserati. In the same year, Chrysler bought AMC from Renault laying to rest the last significant independent U.S. automaker, but acquiring the hugely profitable Jeep
Jeep
Jeep is an automobile marque of Chrysler . The first Willys Jeeps were produced in 1941 with the first civilian models in 1945, making it the oldest off-road vehicle and sport utility vehicle brand. It inspired a number of other light utility vehicles, such as the Land Rover which is the second...

 line and continuing the Eagle
Eagle (automobile)
Eagle was a marque of the Chrysler Corporation following the purchase of American Motors Corporation and aimed at the enthusiast driver.Though short-lived, the Eagle Vision sedan sold in respectable numbers, while the sporty Eagle Talon sold more than 115,000 units.-Overview:Following the...

 brand until the late 1990s.

The DeLorean DMC-12 was the brainchild of John DeLorean, a flamboyant former GM executive. Production of the gull-winged sports car began in Northern Ireland in 1981. John DeLorean was arrested in October 1982 in a sting operation where he was attempting to sell cocaine to save his struggling company. He was acquitted of all charges in 1984, but too late for the DeLorean Motor Company, which closed down in 1983. The DMC-12 gained renewed fame afterward as the time machine in the Back to the Future motion picture trilogy.

Porsche
Porsche
Porsche Automobil Holding SE, usually shortened to Porsche SE a Societas Europaea or European Public Company, is a German based holding company with investments in the automotive industry....

 introduced the 959 sports car in 1986, the fastest car in the world back then, which had the ability to reach a top speed of more than 200 mph (320 km/h). Never before car manufacturers managed to exceed the 200 mph barrier. Just one year later, Porsche's rival Ferrari startled the world introducing the F40, at that point the fastest car in the world, even faster than the 959 from Porsche.

The imposition of CAFE fuel-mileage standards in 1979 spelled the end of big-block engines, but performance cars and convertibles reemerged in the 1980s. Turbochargers were widely used to boost the performance of small cars, and technology from fuel injection
Fuel injection
Fuel injection is a system for admitting fuel into an internal combustion engine. It has become the primary fuel delivery system used in automotive petrol engines, having almost completely replaced carburetors in the late 1980s....

 began to take over from the widely used application of carburetors by the late 1980s. Front-wheel drive also became dominant.

The eighties marked the decline of European brands in North America by the end of the decade. Renault
Renault
Renault S.A. is a French automaker producing cars, vans, and in the past, autorail vehicles, trucks, tractors, vans and also buses/coaches. Its alliance with Nissan makes it the world's third largest automaker...

, Citroen
Citroën
Citroën is a major French automobile manufacturer, part of the PSA Peugeot Citroën group.Founded in 1919 by French industrialist André-Gustave Citroën , Citroën was the first mass-production car company outside the USA and pioneered the modern concept of creating a sales and services network that...

, and Peugeot
Peugeot
Peugeot is a major French car brand, part of PSA Peugeot Citroën, the second largest carmaker based in Europe.The family business that precedes the current Peugeot company was founded in 1810, and manufactured coffee mills and bicycles. On 20 November 1858, Emile Peugeot applied for the lion...

 ceased importation by the end of the decade. Alfa Romeo
Alfa Romeo
Alfa Romeo Automobiles S.p.A. is an Italian manufacturer of cars. Founded as A.L.F.A. on June 24, 1910, in Milan, the company has been involved in car racing since 1911, and has a reputation for building expensive sports cars...

 would continue until 1993. Fiat
Fiat
FIAT, an acronym for Fabbrica Italiana Automobili Torino , is an Italian automobile manufacturer, engine manufacturer, financial, and industrial group based in Turin in the Italian region of Piedmont. Fiat was founded in 1899 by a group of investors including Giovanni Agnelli...

 also ceased imports to North America in the eighties.

Economics

  • International debt crisis in developing countries, reliance of these countries on aid from the International Monetary Fund
    International Monetary Fund
    The International Monetary Fund is an organization of 187 countries, working to foster global monetary cooperation, secure financial stability, facilitate international trade, promote high employment and sustainable economic growth, and reduce poverty around the world...

    .
  • Spread of neoliberal
    Neoliberalism
    Neoliberalism is a market-driven approach to economic and social policy based on neoclassical theories of economics that emphasizes the efficiency of private enterprise, liberalized trade and relatively open markets, and therefore seeks to maximize the role of the private sector in determining the...

     economics in developed world.
  • Mexico suffers from a debt crisis starting in 1982. Economic problems worsened in 1985 by resignation of most officials of the Mexican government after a failed response of emergency aid in the Mexico City earthquake (September 19) just after the 175th anniversary of Independence holiday (September 16). In 1988, Carlos Salinas de Gortari won a controversial presidential election amid charges of voter fraud, bribery, corruption and other abuses of power.
  • Enactment of the Canada-United States Free Trade Agreement
    Canada-United States Free Trade Agreement
    The Free Trade Agreement was a trade agreement signed by Canada and the United States on October 4, 1988. The agreement, finalized by October 1987, removed several trade restrictions in stages over a ten year period, and resulted in a great increase in cross-border trade...

     in 1989 to further establish a strong economic bond between the two prosperous neighbor countries of North America.
  • Under the leadership of Deng Xiaoping
    Deng Xiaoping
    Deng Xiaoping was a Chinese politician, statesman, and diplomat. As leader of the Communist Party of China, Deng was a reformer who led China towards a market economy...

    , China embarked on extensive reforms in the 1980s, introducing market economics and downgrading ideology. Increasing demands for political freedom culminated in the Tiananmen Square Massacre in June 1989, when tanks and troops of the People's Liberation Army crushed student protesters who were camped in the square, killing or injuring 3000 or more people. Hardliners took over the government afterwards, and China ended the '80s as an international pariah.
  • The Solidarity movement began in Poland in 1980, involving workers demanding political liberalization and democracy in Poland. Attempts by the communist government to crush the Solidarity movement failed and negotiations between the movement and the government took place. Solidarity would be instrumental in encouraging people in other communist states to demand political reform.
  • The 1980s saw a revival of capitalism and laissez-faire economics. Consumers became more sophisticated in their tastes (a trend begun in the 1960s), and things such as European cars and designer clothing became fashionable in the US.
  • The financial world and the stock market were glamorized in a way they had not been since the 1920s, and figures like Donald Trump
    Donald Trump
    Donald John Trump, Sr. is an American business magnate, television personality and author. He is the chairman and president of The Trump Organization and the founder of Trump Entertainment Resorts. Trump's extravagant lifestyle, outspoken manner and role on the NBC reality show The Apprentice have...

     and Michael Milken
    Michael Milken
    Michael Robert Milken is an American business magnate, financier, and philanthropist noted for his role in the development of the market for high-yield bonds during the 1970s and 1980s, for his 1990 guilty plea to felony charges for violating US securities laws, and for his funding of medical...

     were widely seen as symbols of the decade. Widespread fear of Japanese economic strength would grip the United States in the '80s.
  • During the 1980s, for the first time in world history, transpacific trade (with East Asia
    East Asia
    East Asia or Eastern Asia is a subregion of Asia that can be defined in either geographical or cultural terms...

    , such as China, and Latin America
    Latin America
    Latin America is a region of the Americas where Romance languages  – particularly Spanish and Portuguese, and variably French – are primarily spoken. Latin America has an area of approximately 21,069,500 km² , almost 3.9% of the Earth's surface or 14.1% of its land surface area...

    , primarily with Mexico) equaled that of transatlantic trade (with Western Europe
    Western Europe
    Western Europe is a loose term for the collection of countries in the western most region of the European continents, though this definition is context-dependent and carries cultural and political connotations. One definition describes Western Europe as a geographic entity—the region lying in the...

     or with neighboring Canada)., solidifying American economic power.

Society


The 1980s was also an era of tremendous population growth around the world, surpassing even the 1970s and 1990s, thus arguably being the largest in human history. Population growth was particularly rapid in a number of African, Middle Eastern, and South Asia
South Asia
South Asia, also known as Southern Asia, is the southern region of the Asian continent, which comprises the sub-Himalayan countries and, for some authorities , also includes the adjoining countries to the west and the east...

n countries during this decade, with rates of natural increase close to or exceeding 4% annually.

Additional significant world-wide events


Worldwide
  • Beginning of the AIDS
    AIDS
    Acquired immune deficiency syndrome or acquired immunodeficiency syndrome is a disease of the human immune system caused by the human immunodeficiency virus...

     pandemic.
  • There were numerous protests demanding that the US government take action against AIDS, which were fuelled by the AIDS-related deaths of celebrities such as Rock Hudson
    Rock Hudson
    Roy Harold Scherer, Jr., later Roy Harold Fitzgerald , known professionally as Rock Hudson, was an American film and television actor, recognized as a romantic leading man during the 1950s and 1960s, most notably in several romantic comedies with Doris Day.Hudson was voted "Star of the Year",...

     and Liberace
    Liberace
    Wladziu Valentino Liberace , best known simply as Liberace, was a famous American pianist and vocalist.In a career that spanned four decades of concerts, recordings, motion pictures, television and endorsements, Liberace became world-renowned...

    , and by the case of Ryan White, a child who became infected by HIV through contaminated blood supplies.
  • National safety campaigns raised awareness of seat belt
    Seat belt
    A seat belt or seatbelt, sometimes called a safety belt, is a safety harness designed to secure the occupant of a vehicle against harmful movement that may result from a collision or a sudden stop...

     usage to save lives in car accidents, helping to make the measure mandatory in most parts of the world by 1990. Similar efforts arose to push child safety seat
    Child safety seat
    Child safety seats are seats designed specifically to protect children from injury or death during collisions. Automobile manufacturers may integrate child safety seats directly into their vehicle's design...

    s and bike helmet use, already mandatory in a number of regions.
  • Rejection of smoking
    Tobacco smoking
    Tobacco smoking is the practice where tobacco is burned and the resulting smoke is inhaled. The practice may have begun as early as 5000–3000 BCE. Tobacco was introduced to Eurasia in the late 16th century where it followed common trade routes...

     based on health concerns increased throughout the western world.
  • Political correctness
    Political correctness
    Political correctness is a term which denotes language, ideas, policies, and behavior seen as seeking to minimize social and institutional offense in occupational, gender, racial, cultural, sexual orientation, certain other religions, beliefs or ideologies, disability, and age-related contexts,...

     in the 1980s and increasingly in the following 1990s, was a trend of behaviour, in western societies, designed to fit the mores of those opposed to forms of prejudice
    Prejudice
    Prejudice is making a judgment or assumption about someone or something before having enough knowledge to be able to do so with guaranteed accuracy, or "judging a book by its cover"...

     against certain minority group
    Minority group
    A minority is a sociological group within a demographic. The demographic could be based on many factors from ethnicity, gender, wealth, power, etc. The term extends to numerous situations, and civilizations within history, despite the misnomer of minorities associated with a numerical statistic...

    s .
  • The role of women in the workplace increased greatly. Continuing the 1970s' trend, more women in the English-speaking world took to calling themselves "Ms.
    Ms.
    Ms. or Ms is an English honorific used with the last name or full name of a woman. According to The Emily Post Institute, Ms...

    ", rather than "Mrs." or "Miss." A similar change occurred in Germany, with women choosing "Frau" instead of "Fräulein" in an effort to disassociate marital status from title. In most western
    Western world
    The Western world, also known as the West and the Occident , is a term referring to the countries of Western Europe , the countries of the Americas, as well all countries of Northern and Central Europe, Australia and New Zealand...

     countries, women began to exercise the option of keeping their maiden names after marriage; in Canada, legislation was enacted to end the practice of automatically changing a woman's last name upon marriage.
  • Opposition to nuclear power
    Nuclear power
    Nuclear power is the use of sustained nuclear fission to generate heat and electricity. Nuclear power plants provide about 6% of the world's energy and 13–14% of the world's electricity, with the U.S., France, and Japan together accounting for about 50% of nuclear generated electricity...

     plants grew, especially after the catastrophic 1986 Chernobyl accident
    Chernobyl disaster
    The Chernobyl disaster was a nuclear accident that occurred on 26 April 1986 at the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant in Ukraine , which was under the direct jurisdiction of the central authorities in Moscow...

    .
  • Environmental concerns intensified. In the United Kingdom, environmentally friendly domestic products surged in popularity. Western European countries adopted "greener" policies to cut back on oil
    Oil
    An oil is any substance that is liquid at ambient temperatures and does not mix with water but may mix with other oils and organic solvents. This general definition includes vegetable oils, volatile essential oils, petrochemical oils, and synthetic oils....

     use, recycle
    Recycling
    Recycling is processing used materials into new products to prevent waste of potentially useful materials, reduce the consumption of fresh raw materials, reduce energy usage, reduce air pollution and water pollution by reducing the need for "conventional" waste disposal, and lower greenhouse...

     most of their nations' waste, and increase focus on water
    Water conservation
    Water conservation refers to reducing the usage of water and recycling of waste water for different purposes such as cleaning, manufacturing, and agricultural irrigation.- Water conservation :Water conservation can be defined as:...

     and energy conservation
    Energy conservation
    Energy conservation refers to efforts made to reduce energy consumption. Energy conservation can be achieved through increased efficient energy use, in conjunction with decreased energy consumption and/or reduced consumption from conventional energy sources...

     efforts. Similar "eco-activist" trends appeared in the US in the late 1980s.
  • Increased awareness and opposition to white-minority apartheid rule in South Africa occurred in the western world.
  • Counterculture in the eastern world revolved around "pro-democracy" stances in opposition to multiple communist states perceived as authoritarian.
  • Gay rights became more widely accepted in the Western world.
  • Militancy against communist governments in Europe and Asia, collapse of the Warsaw Pact
    Warsaw Pact
    The Warsaw Treaty Organization of Friendship, Cooperation, and Mutual Assistance , or more commonly referred to as the Warsaw Pact, was a mutual defense treaty subscribed to by eight communist states in Eastern Europe...

     precipitated the end of the Cold War
    Cold War
    The Cold War was the continuing state from roughly 1946 to 1991 of political conflict, military tension, proxy wars, and economic competition between the Communist World—primarily the Soviet Union and its satellite states and allies—and the powers of the Western world, primarily the United States...

    .
  • A joint American-French expedition discovers the wreck
    Shipwreck
    A shipwreck is what remains of a ship that has wrecked, either sunk or beached. Whatever the cause, a sunken ship or a wrecked ship is a physical example of the event: this explains why the two concepts are often overlapping in English....

     of the RMS Titanic on 1 September 1985 at a depth of 2.5 miles (4 km) at 41°43′55"N 49°56′45"W.


Africa
  • Opposition against Apartheid in South Africa and worldwide grows to a mass international condemnation of racial segregation policies comes to a peak by December 1989 in the Springbok summit when SA President de Klerk grants clemency to imprisoned ANC activist Nelson Mandela
    Nelson Mandela
    Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela served as President of South Africa from 1994 to 1999, and was the first South African president to be elected in a fully representative democratic election. Before his presidency, Mandela was an anti-apartheid activist, and the leader of Umkhonto we Sizwe, the armed wing...

     who was released in February 1990.
  • The 1984–1985 famine in Ethiopia occurred, resulting in international efforts to help the Ethiopia
    Ethiopia
    Ethiopia , officially known as the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia, is a country located in the Horn of Africa. It is the second-most populous nation in Africa, with over 82 million inhabitants, and the tenth-largest by area, occupying 1,100,000 km2...

    n people, including the famous Live Aid
    Live Aid
    Live Aid was a dual-venue concert that was held on 13 July 1985. The event was organized by Bob Geldof and Midge Ure to raise funds for relief of the ongoing Ethiopian famine. Billed as the "global jukebox", the event was held simultaneously in Wembley Stadium in London, England, United Kingdom ...

     concert in July 1985.


Americas
  • Ten thousand Cubans
    Cubans
    Cubans or Cuban people are the inhabitants or citizens of Cuba. Cuba is a multi-ethnic nation, home to people of different ethnic and national backgrounds...

     stormed the Peru
    Peru
    Peru , officially the Republic of Peru , is a country in western South America. It is bordered on the north by Ecuador and Colombia, on the east by Brazil, on the southeast by Bolivia, on the south by Chile, and on the west by the Pacific Ocean....

    vian embassy in Havana
    Havana
    Havana is the capital city, province, major port, and leading commercial centre of Cuba. The city proper has a population of 2.1 million inhabitants, and it spans a total of — making it the largest city in the Caribbean region, and the most populous...

     seeking political asylum on 6 April 1980. On 7 April the Cuban government granted permission for the emigration of Cubans seeking refuge in the Peruvian embassy.
  • The 1986 World's Fair, Expo 86
    Expo 86
    The 1986 World Exposition on Transportation and Communication, or simply Expo '86, was a World's Fair held in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada from Friday, May 2 until Monday, October 13, 1986...

    , was held in Vancouver, Canada. It was the last fair held in North America and was considered a great success in comparison to the then-recent American Expositions.
  • In 1984 crack cocaine
    Crack cocaine
    Crack cocaine is the freebase form of cocaine that can be smoked. It may also be termed rock, hard, iron, cavvy, base, or just crack; it is the most addictive form of cocaine. Crack rocks offer a short but intense high to smokers...

     reached American cities and the marked the start of the crack epidemic
    Crack Epidemic
    The United States crack epidemic refers to the surge of crack houses and crack cocaine use in major cities in the United States between 1984 and 1990...

    .


Asia
  • Vietnam
    Vietnam
    Vietnam – sometimes spelled Viet Nam , officially the Socialist Republic of Vietnam – is the easternmost country on the Indochina Peninsula in Southeast Asia. It is bordered by China to the north, Laos to the northwest, Cambodia to the southwest, and the South China Sea –...

     continued to occupy Cambodia
    Cambodia
    Cambodia , officially known as the Kingdom of Cambodia, is a country located in the southern portion of the Indochina Peninsula in Southeast Asia...

     and battle the Khmer Rouge throughout the entire decade. Relations with China remained hostile, and there were frequent border skirmishes, although none were comparable to the 1979 conflict. The country remained one of Asia's poorest and was totally dependent on Soviet economic assistance. Mikhail Gorbachev began reducing foreign aid to the communist bloc in the late 1980s, and this combined with the deaths of elderly Vietnamese leaders such as Le Duan brought about the gradual adoption of a relatively free market system similar to that of China.
  • Benigno "Ninoy" Aquino, husband of the first female president of the Philippines
    Philippines
    The Philippines , officially known as the Republic of the Philippines , is a country in Southeast Asia in the western Pacific Ocean. To its north across the Luzon Strait lies Taiwan. West across the South China Sea sits Vietnam...

     was shot dead at the Manila International Airport on 21 August 1983. The killers were never identified.

Music

See also 1980s in music
1980s in music
For music from a year in the 1980s, go to 80 | 81 | 82 | 83 | 84 | 85 | 86 | 87 | 88 | 89For a history of music in all times, see Timeline of musical events....

, Timeline of musical events#1980s



In the United States, MTV
MTV
MTV, formerly an initialism of Music Television, is an American network based in New York City that launched on August 1, 1981. The original purpose of the channel was to play music videos guided by on-air hosts known as VJs....

 was launched and music video
Music video
A music video or song video is a short film integrating a song and imagery, produced for promotional or artistic purposes. Modern music videos are primarily made and used as a marketing device intended to promote the sale of music recordings...

s began to have a larger effect on the record industry. Pop artists such as Michael Jackson
Michael Jackson
Michael Joseph Jackson was an American recording artist, entertainer, and businessman. Referred to as the King of Pop, or by his initials MJ, Jackson is recognized as the most successful entertainer of all time by Guinness World Records...

, Duran Duran
Duran Duran
Duran Duran are an English band, formed in Birmingham in 1978. They were one of the most successful bands of the 1980s and a leading band in the MTV-driven "Second British Invasion" of the United States...

, Prince
Prince (musician)
Prince Rogers Nelson , often known simply as Prince, is an American singer, songwriter, musician, and actor. Prince has produced ten platinum albums and thirty Top 40 singles during his career. Prince founded his own recording studio and label; writing, self-producing and playing most, or all, of...

, Madonna
Madonna (entertainer)
Madonna is an American singer-songwriter, actress and entrepreneur. Born in Bay City, Michigan, she moved to New York City in 1977 to pursue a career in modern dance. After performing in the music groups Breakfast Club and Emmy, she released her debut album in 1983...

, and Queen
Queen (band)
Queen are a British rock band formed in London in 1971, originally consisting of Freddie Mercury , Brian May , John Deacon , and Roger Taylor...

 mastered the format and helped turn this new product into a profitable business. New Wave
New Wave music
New Wave is a subgenre of :rock music that emerged in the mid to late 1970s alongside punk rock. The term at first generally was synonymous with punk rock before being considered a genre in its own right that incorporated aspects of electronic and experimental music, mod subculture, disco and 1960s...

 and Synthpop
Synthpop
Synthpop is a genre of popular music that first became prominent in the 1980s, in which the synthesizer is the dominant musical instrument. It was prefigured in the 1960s and early 1970s by the use of synthesizers in progressive rock, electronic art rock, disco and particularly the "Kraut rock" of...

 were developed by many British and American artists, and became popular phenomena throughout the decade, especially in the early and mid eighties.

Michael Jackson
Michael Jackson
Michael Joseph Jackson was an American recording artist, entertainer, and businessman. Referred to as the King of Pop, or by his initials MJ, Jackson is recognized as the most successful entertainer of all time by Guinness World Records...

 was a popular entertainer of the 1980s and his leather jacket
Leather jacket
A leather jacket is a type of clothing—a jacket-length coat—usually worn on top of other apparel, and made from the tanned hide of various animals. The leather material is typically dyed black, or various shades of brown, but a wide range of colors is possible...

, glove
Glove
A glove is a garment covering the hand. Gloves have separate sheaths or openings for each finger and the thumb; if there is an opening but no covering sheath for each finger they are called "fingerless gloves". Fingerless gloves with one large opening rather than individual openings for each...

 and Moonwalk dance were often imitated. Jackson's 1982 album Thriller
Thriller (album)
Thriller is the sixth studio album by American recording artist Michael Jackson. It was released on November 30, 1982, by Epic Records as the follow-up to Jackson's critically and commercially successful 1979 album Off the Wall...

 became—and currently remains—the best-selling album of all time, with sales estimated by various sources as somewhere between 65 and 110 million copies worldwide.

Madonna
Madonna (entertainer)
Madonna is an American singer-songwriter, actress and entrepreneur. Born in Bay City, Michigan, she moved to New York City in 1977 to pursue a career in modern dance. After performing in the music groups Breakfast Club and Emmy, she released her debut album in 1983...

 was regarded as the most ground breaking female artist of the decade; she was also noted for her many fashion incarnations. The keyboard synthesizer and drum machine
Drum machine
A drum machine is an electronic musical instrument designed to imitate the sound of drums or other percussion instruments. They are used in a variety of musical genres, not just purely electronic music...

 were among the most popular in music in the 1980s, especially in New Wave music
New Wave music
New Wave is a subgenre of :rock music that emerged in the mid to late 1970s alongside punk rock. The term at first generally was synonymous with punk rock before being considered a genre in its own right that incorporated aspects of electronic and experimental music, mod subculture, disco and 1960s...

. After the 1980s electronic instruments were no longer popular in rock but continued to be the main component of mainstream pop.

By 1989, the hip hop
Hip hop music
Hip hop music, also called hip-hop, rap music or hip-hop music, is a musical genre consisting of a stylized rhythmic music that commonly accompanies rapping, a rhythmic and rhyming speech that is chanted...

 scene had evolved, gaining recognition and exhibiting a stronger influence on the music industry. This time period is also considered part of the golden age
Golden age hip hop
Hip hop's "golden age" is a name given to a period in mainstream hip hop—usually cited as being a period varying in time frames during the 1980s and 1990s said to be characterized by its diversity, quality, innovation and influence. There were strong themes of Afrocentricity and political...

 of hip hop. The Beastie Boys
Beastie Boys
Beastie Boys are an American hip hop trio from New York City. The group consists of Mike D who plays the drums, MCA who plays the bass, and Ad-Rock who plays the guitar....

, Public Enemy, Run-D.M.C., Grandmaster Flash
Grandmaster Flash
Joseph Saddler better known as King Grandmaster Flash, is an American hip hop musician and DJ; one of the pioneers of hip-hop DJing, cutting, and mixing....

 and the Furious Five
Grandmaster Flash and The Furious Five
Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five was an influential American hip-hop group formed in the South Bronx of New York City in 1978. Composed of one DJ and five rappers Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five was an influential American hip-hop group formed in the South Bronx of New York City in...

, Boogie Down Productions
Boogie Down Productions
Boogie Down Productions was a hip hop group that was originally composed of KRS-One, D-Nice, and DJ Scott La Rock. DJ Scott La Rock was murdered on August 27, 1987, months after the release of BDP's debut album, Criminal Minded. The name of the group, Boogie Down, derives from a nickname for the...

, N.W.A, LL Cool J
LL Cool J
James Todd Smith , better known as LL Cool J , is an American rapper, entrepreneur, and actor...

, De La Soul
De La Soul
De La Soul is an American hip hop trio formed in 1987 on Long Island, New York. The band is best known for their eclectic sampling, quirky lyrics, and their contributions to the evolution of the jazz rap and alternative hip hop subgenres...

, A Tribe Called Quest
A Tribe Called Quest
A Tribe Called Quest is an American hip hop group, formed in 1985, and is composed of rapper/producer Q-Tip , rapper Phife Dawg , and DJ/producer Ali Shaheed Muhammad. A fourth member, rapper Jarobi White, left the group after their first album but rejoined in 2006...

, EPMD
EPMD
EPMD is an American hip hop group from Brentwood, New York. The group's name is a concatenation of the members' name "E" and "PMD" or an acronym for "Erick and Parrish Making Dollars", referencing its members, emcees Erick Sermon and Parrish Smith...

, Eric B. & Rakim
Eric B. & Rakim
Eric B. & Rakim were a hip-hop duo composed of DJ Eric Barrier and MC Rakim .Hailing from Long Island, New York, the pair are generally considered by hip hop enthusiasts to be one of the most influential and innovative groups in the genre...

, Ice-T
ICE-T
* Ice-T, an American rapper and actor* ICE T , a tilting model of the German InterCityExpress series of high-speed trains...

, DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince
DJ Jazzy Jeff & the Fresh Prince
DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince is a hip hop duo from West Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Vocalist Will Smith met Jeff Townes while trying to make a name for himself in West Philadelphia's local hip hop scene. After joining forces with Clarence Holmes the team members became local celebrities...

, 2 Live Crew
2 Live Crew
2 Live Crew was a hip hop group from Miami, Florida. They caused considerable controversy with the sexual themes in their work, particularly on their 1989 album As Nasty As They Wanna Be.- Early career :...

, Tone Lōc
Tone Lōc
Anthony Terrell Smith , better known by his stage name Tone Lōc, is an American rapper and actor.-Early life and career:...

, Biz Markie
Biz Markie
Marcel Theo Hall better known by his stage name, Biz Markie, is an American rapper, beatboxer, DJ, comedian, singer, reality television personality, and commercial spokesperson. He is best known for his single "Just a Friend", an American Top 10 hit in 1989...

, the Jungle Brothers
Jungle Brothers
The Jungle Brothers are an American hip hop group that pioneered the fusion of jazz and hip-hop and also became the first hip-hop group to use a house-music producer. The group began performing in the mid-1980s and released its first album, Straight Out the Jungle, in July 1988...

 and others experienced success in this genre.

The Techno
Techno
Techno is a form of electronic dance music that emerged in Detroit, Michigan in the United States during the mid to late 1980s. The first recorded use of the word techno, in reference to a genre of music, was in 1988...

 style of electronic dance music emerged in Detroit, Michigan
Detroit, Michigan
Detroit is the major city among the primary cultural, financial, and transportation centers in the Metro Detroit area, a region of 5.2 million people. As the seat of Wayne County, the city of Detroit is the largest city in the U.S. state of Michigan and serves as a major port on the Detroit River...

 during the mid to late 1980s. The House music
House music
House music is a genre of electronic dance music that originated in Chicago, Illinois, United States in the early 1980s. It was initially popularized in mid-1980s discothèques catering to the African-American, Latino American, and gay communities; first in Chicago circa 1984, then in other...

 style, another form of electronic dance music, emerged in Chicago, Illinois in the early 1980s. It was initially popularized in mid-1980s discothèques catering to the African-American, Latino and gay communities, first in Chicago, then in New York City and Detroit. It eventually reached Europe before becoming infused in mainstream pop and dance music worldwide.

Hard rock
Hard rock
Hard rock is a loosely defined genre of rock music which has its earliest roots in mid-1960s garage rock, blues rock and psychedelic rock...

, heavy metal
Heavy metal music
Heavy metal is a genre of rock music that developed in the late 1960s and early 1970s, largely in the Midlands of the United Kingdom and the United States...

, and glam metal
Glam metal
Glam metal is a subgenre of hard rock and heavy metal that arose in the late 1970s and early 1980s in the United States, particularly on the Los Angeles Sunset Strip music scene...

 became some of the most dominant music genres of the decade, peaking with the arrival of such bands as Guns N' Roses
Guns N' Roses
Guns N' Roses is an American hard rock band, formed in Hollywood, Los Angeles, California, in 1985. The band has released six studio albums, three EPs, and one live album...

, Metallica
Metallica
Metallica is an American heavy metal band from Los Angeles, California. Formed in 1981 when James Hetfield responded to an advertisement that drummer Lars Ulrich had posted in a local newspaper. The current line-up features long-time lead guitarist Kirk Hammett and bassist Robert Trujillo ...

, Iron Maiden
Iron Maiden
Iron Maiden are an English heavy metal band from Leyton in east London, formed in 1975 by bassist and primary songwriter Steve Harris. Since their inception, the band's discography has grown to include a total of thirty-six albums: fifteen studio albums; eleven live albums; four EPs; and six...

, Bon Jovi
Bon Jovi
Bon Jovi is an American rock band from Sayreville, New Jersey. Formed in 1983, Bon Jovi consists of lead singer and namesake Jon Bon Jovi , guitarist Richie Sambora, keyboardist David Bryan, drummer Tico Torres, as well as current bassist Hugh McDonald...

, Def Leppard
Def Leppard
Def Leppard are an English rock band formed in 1977 in Sheffield as part of the New Wave of British Heavy Metal movement. Since 1992, the band have consisted of Joe Elliott , Rick Savage , Rick Allen , Phil Collen , and Vivian Campbell...

, Poison
Poison (band)
Poison is an American glam metal band that achieved great success in the mid-1980s to mid-1990s. To date, Poison has sold over 30 million records worldwide and have sold 15 million records in the United States alone. The band has also charted ten singles to the Top 40 of the Billboard Hot 100,...

, Europe
Europe (band)
Europe is a Swedish rock band formed in Upplands Väsby in 1979 under the name Force by vocalist Joey Tempest, guitarist John Norum and drummer Tony Reno. Although widely associated with glam metal, the band's sound incorporates heavy metal and hard rock elements...

, Megadeth
Megadeth
Megadeth is an American heavy metal band from Los Angeles, California which was formed in 1983 by guitarist/vocalist Dave Mustaine, bassist Dave Ellefson and guitarist Greg Handevidt, following Mustaine's expulsion from Metallica. The band has since released 13 studio albums, three live albums, two...

, Slayer
Slayer
Slayer is an American thrash metal band formed in Huntington Park, California, in 1981 by guitarists Jeff Hanneman and Kerry King. Slayer rose to fame with their 1986 release, Reign in Blood, and is credited as one of the "Big Four" thrash metal acts, along with Metallica, Megadeth and...

, Anthrax
Anthrax (band)
Anthrax is an American heavy metal band from New York City, formed in 1981. Founded by guitarists Scott Ian and Danny Lilker, the band has since released ten studio albums and 20 singles, and an EP featuring Public Enemy. The band was one of the most popular of the 1980s thrash metal scene...

, Mötley Crüe
Mötley Crüe
Mötley Crüe is an American heavy metal band formed in Los Angeles, California in 1981. The group was founded by bass guitarist Nikki Sixx and drummer Tommy Lee, who were later joined by lead guitarist Mick Mars and lead singer Vince Neil...

, and virtuoso
Virtuoso
A virtuoso is an individual who possesses outstanding technical ability in the fine arts, at singing or playing a musical instrument. The plural form is either virtuosi or the Anglicisation, virtuosos, and the feminine form sometimes used is virtuosa...

 guitarists such as Joe Satriani
Joe Satriani
Joseph "Joe" Satriani is an American instrumental rock guitarist and multi-instrumentalist, with multiple Grammy Award nominations...

 and Yngwie Malmsteen. The scene also helped 1970s hard rock artists such as AC/DC
AC/DC
AC/DC are an Australian rock band, formed in 1973 by brothers Malcolm and Angus Young. Commonly classified as hard rock, they are considered pioneers of heavy metal, though they themselves have always classified their music as simply "rock and roll"...

, Ozzy Osbourne
Ozzy Osbourne
John Michael "Ozzy" Osbourne is an English vocalist, whose musical career has spanned over 40 years. Osbourne rose to prominence as lead singer of the pioneering English heavy metal band Black Sabbath, whose radically different, intentionally dark, harder sound helped spawn the heavy metal...

, KISS
KISS (band)
Kiss is an American rock band formed in New York City in January 1973. Well-known for its members' face paint and flamboyant stage outfits, the group rose to prominence in the mid to late 1970s on the basis of their elaborate live performances, which featured fire breathing, blood spitting,...

, Ronnie James Dio
Ronnie James Dio
Ronald James Padavona , better known as Ronnie James Dio, was an American heavy metal vocalist and songwriter. He performed with, amongst others, Elf, Rainbow, Black Sabbath, Heaven & Hell, and his own band Dio, which means God in Italian. Other musical projects include the collective fundraiser...

, and Judas Priest
Judas Priest
Judas Priest are an English heavy metal band from Birmingham, England, formed in 1969. The current line-up consists of lead vocalist Rob Halford, guitarists Glenn Tipton and Richie Faulkner, bassist Ian Hill, and drummer Scott Travis. The band has gone through several drummers over the years,...

 reach a new generation of fans.

Punk rock
Punk rock
Punk rock is a rock music genre that developed between 1974 and 1976 in the United States, the United Kingdom, and Australia. Rooted in garage rock and other forms of what is now known as protopunk music, punk rock bands eschewed perceived excesses of mainstream 1970s rock...

 continued to make strides in the musical community; it gave birth to many sub-genres like hardcore
Hardcore punk
Hardcore punk is an underground music genre that originated in the late 1970s, following the mainstream success of punk rock. Hardcore is generally faster, thicker, and heavier than earlier punk rock. The origin of the term "hardcore punk" is uncertain. The Vancouver-based band D.O.A...

, which has continued to be moderately successful, giving birth in turn to a few counterculture movements, most notably the Straight Edge
Straight edge
Straight edge is a subculture of hardcore punk whose adherents refrain from using alcohol, tobacco, and other recreational drugs. It was a direct reaction to the sexual revolution, hedonism, and excess associated with punk rock. For some, this extends to not engaging in promiscuous sex, following a...

 movement which began in the early era of this decade. College rock
College rock
College rock is a term that was used in the United States to describe 1980s alternative rock before the term "alternative" came into common usage. The term's use of the word "college" refers to campus radio stations located at institutions of higher education in Canada and the United States, where...

 caught on in the underground scene of the 1980s in a nationwide movement with a distinct D.I.Y approach. Bands like the Pixies, R.E.M.
R.E.M.
R.E.M. was an American rock band formed in Athens, Georgia, in 1980 by singer Michael Stipe, guitarist Peter Buck, bassist Mike Mills and drummer Bill Berry. One of the first popular alternative rock bands, R.E.M. gained early attention due to Buck's ringing, arpeggiated guitar style and Stipe's...

, The Replacements, Sonic Youth
Sonic Youth
Sonic Youth is an American alternative rock band from New York City, formed in 1981. The current lineup consists of Thurston Moore , Kim Gordon , Lee Ranaldo , Steve Shelley , and Mark Ibold .In their early career, Sonic Youth was associated with the No Wave art and music scene in New York City...

, XTC
XTC
XTC were a New Wave band from Swindon, England, active between 1976 and 2005. The band enjoyed some chart success, including the UK and Canadian hits "Making Plans for Nigel" and "Senses Working Overtime" , but are perhaps even better known for their long-standing critical success.- Early years:...

, The Smiths
The Smiths
The Smiths were an English alternative rock band, formed in Manchester in 1982. Based on the song writing partnership of Morrissey and Johnny Marr , the band also included Andy Rourke and Mike Joyce...

, etc. experienced success in this genre.

Several notable music artists died of unnatural causes in the 1980s. John Lennon
John Lennon
John Winston Lennon, MBE was an English musician and singer-songwriter who rose to worldwide fame as one of the founding members of The Beatles, one of the most commercially successful and critically acclaimed acts in the history of popular music...

 was shot outside of his home in New York City
New York City
New York is the most populous city in the United States and the center of the New York Metropolitan Area, one of the most populous metropolitan areas in the world. New York exerts a significant impact upon global commerce, finance, media, art, fashion, research, technology, education, and...

 on the night of December 8, 1980. Tim Hardin
Tim Hardin
James Timothy "Tim" Hardin was an American folk musician and composer. He wrote the Top 40 hits "If I Were a Carpenter", covered by, among others, Joan Baez, Bobby Darin, Johnny Cash, Ramblin' Jack Elliot, and Robert Plant, and "Reason to Believe", covered by many, including Rod Stewart, as well...

 died of a heroin overdose on December 29, 1980. Bob Marley
Bob Marley
Robert Nesta "Bob" Marley, OM was a Jamaican singer-songwriter and musician. He was the rhythm guitarist and lead singer for the ska, rocksteady and reggae band Bob Marley & The Wailers...

 died from a lentiginous skin melanoma
Melanoma
Melanoma is a malignant tumor of melanocytes. Melanocytes are cells that produce the dark pigment, melanin, which is responsible for the color of skin. They predominantly occur in skin, but are also found in other parts of the body, including the bowel and the eye...

 on May 11, 1981. Marvin Gaye
Marvin Gaye
Marvin Pentz Gay, Jr. , better known by his stage name Marvin Gaye, was an American singer-songwriter and musician with a three-octave vocal range....

 was shot dead
Death of Marvin Gaye
On April 1, 1984, Marvin Gaye was fatally shot by his father, Marvin Gaye, Sr. in the West Adams district of Los Angeles at their house on Gramercy Place. Gaye was shot twice after an altercation he had with his father after intervening in an argument between the elder Gaye and his mother Alberta...

 by his father at his home in Los Angeles
Los Ángeles
Los Ángeles is the capital of the province of Biobío, in the commune of the same name, in Region VIII , in the center-south of Chile. It is located between the Laja and Biobío rivers. The population is 123,445 inhabitants...

 on April 1, 1984, one day before what would have been his 45th birthday. Ozzy Osbourne's guitarist Randy Rhoads
Randy Rhoads
Randall William "Randy" Rhoads was an American heavy metal guitarist who played with Ozzy Osbourne and Quiet Riot. A devoted student of classical guitar, Rhoads often combined his classical music influences with his own heavy metal style. While on tour with Ozzy Osbourne, he would seek out...

 died in an airplane crash on March 18, 1982. Metallica
Metallica
Metallica is an American heavy metal band from Los Angeles, California. Formed in 1981 when James Hetfield responded to an advertisement that drummer Lars Ulrich had posted in a local newspaper. The current line-up features long-time lead guitarist Kirk Hammett and bassist Robert Trujillo ...

 bassist Cliff Burton
Cliff Burton
Clifford Lee "Cliff" Burton was an American musician, best known as the bass guitarist for the American heavy metal band Metallica....

 was killed in a bus accident in Sweden
Sweden
Sweden , officially the Kingdom of Sweden , is a Nordic country on the Scandinavian Peninsula in Northern Europe. Sweden borders with Norway and Finland and is connected to Denmark by a bridge-tunnel across the Öresund....

 on September 27, 1986. Andy Gibb
Andy Gibb
Andy Gibb was an English singer and teen idol, and the youngest brother of the family whose other male siblings formed the Bee Gees: Barry, Robin, and Maurice Gibb.-The early years:...

 died in 1988 as a result of myocarditis.

1985's Live Aid
Live Aid
Live Aid was a dual-venue concert that was held on 13 July 1985. The event was organized by Bob Geldof and Midge Ure to raise funds for relief of the ongoing Ethiopian famine. Billed as the "global jukebox", the event was held simultaneously in Wembley Stadium in London, England, United Kingdom ...

 concert, featuring many artists, promoted attention and action to send food aid to Ethiopia
Ethiopia
Ethiopia , officially known as the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia, is a country located in the Horn of Africa. It is the second-most populous nation in Africa, with over 82 million inhabitants, and the tenth-largest by area, occupying 1,100,000 km2...

 whose people were suffering from a major famine.

Film


  • Oscar winners: Ordinary People
    Ordinary People
    Ordinary People is a 1980 American drama film that marked the directorial debut of Robert Redford. It stars Donald Sutherland, Mary Tyler Moore, Judd Hirsch and Timothy Hutton....

     (1980), Chariots of Fire
    Chariots of Fire
    Chariots of Fire is a 1981 British film. It tells the fact-based story of two athletes in the 1924 Olympics: Eric Liddell, a devout Scottish Christian who runs for the glory of God, and Harold Abrahams, an English Jew who runs to overcome prejudice....

     (1981), Gandhi
    Gandhi (film)
    Gandhi is a 1982 biographical film based on the life of Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi, who led the nonviolent resistance movement against British colonial rule in India during the first half of the 20th century. The film was directed by Richard Attenborough and stars Ben Kingsley as Gandhi. They both...

     (1982), Terms of Endearment
    Terms of Endearment
    Terms of Endearment is a 1983 romantic comedy-drama film adapted by James L. Brooks from the novel by Larry McMurtry and starring Shirley MacLaine, Debra Winger, and Jack Nicholson...

     (1983), Amadeus
    Amadeus (film)
    Amadeus is a 1984 period drama film directed by Miloš Forman and written by Peter Shaffer. Adapted from Shaffer's stage play Amadeus, the story is based loosely on the lives of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and Antonio Salieri, two composers who lived in Vienna, Austria, during the latter half of the...

     (1984), Out of Africa (1985), Platoon
    Platoon (film)
    Platoon is a 1986 American war film written and directed by Oliver Stone and stars Tom Berenger, Willem Dafoe and Charlie Sheen. It is the first of Stone's Vietnam War trilogy, followed by 1989's Born on the Fourth of July and 1993's Heaven & Earth....

     (1986), The Last Emperor
    The Last Emperor
    The Last Emperor is a 1987 biopic about the life of Puyi, the last Emperor of China, whose autobiography was the basis for the screenplay written by Mark Peploe and Bernardo Bertolucci. Independently produced by Jeremy Thomas, it was directed by Bertolucci and released in 1987 by Columbia Pictures...

     (1987), Rain Man
    Rain Man
    Rain Man is a 1988 drama film written by Barry Morrow and Ronald Bass and directed by Barry Levinson. It tells the story of an abrasive and selfish yuppie, Charlie Babbitt, who discovers that his estranged father has died and bequeathed all of his multimillion-dollar estate to his other son,...

     (1988), Driving Miss Daisy
    Driving Miss Daisy
    Driving Miss Daisy is a 1989 American comedy-drama film adapted from the Alfred Uhry play of the same name. The film was directed by Bruce Beresford, with Morgan Freeman reprising his role as Hoke Colburn and Jessica Tandy playing Miss Daisy...

     (1989)
  • The 15 highest-grossing films of the decade are (in order from highest to lowest domestic grossing): E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial
    E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial
    E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial is a 1982 American science fiction film co-produced and directed by Steven Spielberg, written by Melissa Mathison and starring Henry Thomas, Dee Wallace, Robert MacNaughton, Drew Barrymore, and Peter Coyote...

    , Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi
    Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi
    Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi is a 1983 American epic space opera film directed by Richard Marquand and written by George Lucas and Lawrence Kasdan. It is the third film released in the Star Wars saga, and the sixth in terms of the series' internal chronology...

    , Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back
    Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back
    Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back is a 1980 American epic space opera film directed by Irvin Kershner. The screenplay, based on a story by George Lucas, was written by Leigh Brackett and Lawrence Kasdan...

    , Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade
    Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade
    Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade is a 1989 American adventure film directed by Steven Spielberg, from a story co-written by executive producer George Lucas. It is the third film in the Indiana Jones franchise. Harrison Ford reprises the title role and Sean Connery plays Indiana's father, Henry...

    , Batman
    Batman (1989 film)
    Batman is a 1989 superhero film based on the DC Comics character of the same name, directed by Tim Burton. The film stars Michael Keaton in the title role, as well as Jack Nicholson, Kim Basinger, Robert Wuhl and Jack Palance...

    , Rain Man
    Rain Man
    Rain Man is a 1988 drama film written by Barry Morrow and Ronald Bass and directed by Barry Levinson. It tells the story of an abrasive and selfish yuppie, Charlie Babbitt, who discovers that his estranged father has died and bequeathed all of his multimillion-dollar estate to his other son,...

    , Raiders of the Lost Ark
    Raiders of the Lost Ark
    Raiders of the Lost Ark is a 1981 American action-adventure film directed by Steven Spielberg, produced by George Lucas, and starring Harrison Ford. It is the first film in the Indiana Jones franchise...

    , Back to the Future
    Back to the Future
    Back to the Future is a 1985 American science-fiction adventure film. It was directed by Robert Zemeckis, written by Zemeckis and Bob Gale, produced by Steven Spielberg, and starred Michael J. Fox, Christopher Lloyd, Lea Thompson, Crispin Glover and Thomas F. Wilson. The film tells the story of...

    , Who Framed Roger Rabbit
    Who Framed Roger Rabbit
    Who Framed Roger Rabbit is a 1988 American fantasy-comedy-noir film directed by Robert Zemeckis and released by Touchstone Pictures. The film combines live action and animation, and is based on Gary K. Wolf's novel Who Censored Roger Rabbit?, which depicts a world in which cartoon characters...

    , Top Gun
    Top Gun
    Top Gun may refer to:* Top Gun is a 1986 film starring Tom Cruise.**Top Gun , soundtrack to the movie**Top Gun , a number of games based on the movie...

    , Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom
    Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom
    Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom is a 1984 American adventure film directed by Steven Spielberg. It is the second film in the Indiana Jones franchise and prequel to Raiders of the Lost Ark . After arriving in India, Indiana Jones is asked by a desperate village to find a mystical stone...

    , Back to the Future Part II
    Back to the Future Part II
    Back to the Future Part II is a 1989 American science fiction comedy film and the second installment of the Back to the Future trilogy. It was directed by Robert Zemeckis, written by Zemeckis and Bob Gale, and starred Michael J. Fox, Christopher Lloyd, Thomas F. Wilson and Lea Thompson...

    , Crocodile Dundee
    Crocodile Dundee
    "Crocodile" Dundee is a 1986 Australian comedy film set in the Australian Outback and in New York City. It stars Paul Hogan as the weathered Mick Dundee and Linda Kozlowski as Sue Charlton....

    , Fatal Attraction
    Fatal Attraction
    Fatal Attraction is a 1987 American thriller blended with horror, directed by Adrian Lyne and stars Michael Douglas, Glenn Close and Anne Archer. The film centers around a married man who has a weekend affair with a woman who refuses to allow it to end, resulting in emotional blackmail, stalking...

     and Beverly Hills Cop
    Beverly Hills Cop
    Beverly Hills Cop is a 1984 American comedy-action film directed by Martin Brest and starring Eddie Murphy, Lisa Eilbacher, John Ashton, Judge Reinhold, and Ronny Cox...

    .

This was the period when the 'high concept
High concept
High concept is a term used to refer to an artistic work that can be easily described by a succinctly stated premise.-Terminology:High concept narratives are typically characterised by an over-arching "what if?" scenario that acts as a catalyst for the following events...

' films were introduced. The movies were supposed to be easily marketable and understandable, and, therefore, they had short cinematic plots that could be summarized in one or two sentences. The modern Hollywood blockbuster
Blockbuster (entertainment)
Blockbuster, as applied to film or theatre, denotes a very popular or successful production. The entertainment industry use was originally theatrical slang referring to a particularly successful play but is now used primarily by the film industry...

 is the most popular film format from the 1980s. Producer Don Simpson
Don Simpson
Donald Clarence "Don" Simpson was an American film producer, screenwriter, and actor. He is known for producing such hits as Flashdance, Beverly Hills Cop, Top Gun and The Rock...

 is usually credited with the creation of the high-concept picture of the modern Hollywood blockbuster.

The 80s also spawned the Brat Pack films, many of which were directed by John Hughes. Films such as The Breakfast Club
The Breakfast Club
The Breakfast Club is a 1985 American teen drama film written and directed by John Hughes. The storyline follows five teenagers as they spend a Saturday in detention together and come to realize that they are all deeper than their respective stereotypes.-Plot:The plot follows five students at...

, Fast Times at Ridgemont High
Fast Times at Ridgemont High
Fast Times at Ridgemont High is a 1982 American coming-of-age teen comedy film written by Cameron Crowe and adapted from his 1981 book of the same name...

, Porky's
Porky's
Porky's is a 1982 comedy film about the escapades of teenagers at the fictional Angel Beach High School in Florida in 1954. It was released in the United States in 1982, and spawned two sequels: Porky's II: The Next Day and Porky's Revenge! and influenced many writers in the teen film genre...

, Pretty In Pink
Pretty in Pink
Pretty in Pink is a 1986 American teen romantic comedy-drama film about teenage love and social cliques in 1980s American high schools. It is one of a group of John Hughes films starring Molly Ringwald, and is commonly identified as a "Brat Pack" film...

, Sixteen Candles
Sixteen Candles
Sixteen Candles is a 1984 American film starring Molly Ringwald, Michael Schoeffling and Anthony Michael Hall. It was written and directed by John Hughes.- Plot :...

, Weird Science
Weird Science (film)
Weird Science is a 1985 American teen comedy film written and directed by John Hughes and starring Anthony Michael Hall, Ilan Mitchell-Smith, and Kelly LeBrock...

 and Valley Girl
Valley Girl (film)
Valley Girl is a 1983 romantic comedy film, starring Nicolas Cage, Deborah Foreman, Elizabeth Daily, Cameron Dye, and Joyce Heiser. The film was the directorial debut of Martha Coolidge, and was the first film in which Nicolas Coppola was billed as Nicolas Cage.The American release of Valley Girl...

 were popular teen comedies of the era and launched the careers of several major celebrities such as: Emilio Estevez
Emilio Estevez
Emilio Estevez is an American actor, film director, and writer. He started his career as an actor and is well-known for being a member of the acting Brat Pack of the 1980s, starring in The Breakfast Club and St. Elmo's Fire...

, Anthony Michael Hall
Anthony Michael Hall
Michael Anthony Hall , known professionally as Anthony Michael Hall, is an American actor, film producer and director who starred in several teen-oriented films of the 1980s. Hall began his career in commercials and on stage as a child, and made his screen debut in 1980...

, Forest Whitaker
Forest Whitaker
Forest Steven Whitaker is an American actor, producer, and director. He has earned a reputation for intensive character study work for films such as Bird and Ghost Dog: The Way of the Samurai, and for his recurring role as ex-LAPD Lieutenant Jon Kavanaugh on the gritty, award-winning television...

, Jennifer Jason Leigh
Jennifer Jason Leigh
Jennifer Jason Leigh is an American film and stage actress, best known for her roles in Fast Times at Ridgemont High, Single White Female, Last Exit to Brooklyn, Georgia and Short Cuts...

, Judd Nelson
Judd Nelson
Judd Asher Nelson is an American actor. He is best known for being a member of the "Brat Pack" in the mid-1980s; and for his roles as John Bender in The Breakfast Club, Alec Newbary in St...

, Molly Ringwald
Molly Ringwald
Molly Kathleen Ringwald is an American actress, singer and dancer. Having appeared in the John Hughes movies Sixteen Candles , The Breakfast Club , and Pretty in Pink , Ringwald has been frequently named the greatest teen star of all time...

, Sean Penn
Sean Penn
Sean Justin Penn is an American actor, screenwriter and film director, also known for his political and social activism...

 and Nicolas Cage
Nicolas Cage
Nicolas Cage is an American actor, producer and director, having appeared in over 60 films including Raising Arizona , The Rock , Face/Off , Gone in 60 Seconds , Adaptation , National Treasure , Ghost Rider , Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans , and...

. Other popular films included About Last Night..., Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure
Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure
Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure is a 1989 American science fiction–comedy buddy film and the first film in the Bill & Ted franchise in which two metalhead slackers travel through time to assemble a menagerie of historical figures for their high school history presentation.The film was written by...

, Dirty Dancing
Dirty Dancing
Dirty Dancing is a 1987 American romantic film. Written by Eleanor Bergstein and directed by Emile Ardolino, the film features Patrick Swayze and Jennifer Grey in the lead roles, as well as Cynthia Rhodes and Jerry Orbach...

, Flashdance
Flashdance
Another song used in the film, "Maniac", was also nominated for an Academy Award. It was written by Michael Sembello and Dennis Matkosky, and was inspired by the 1980 horror film Maniac. The lyrics about a killer on the loose were rewritten so that it could be used in Flashdance...

, Footloose, Raging Bull and St. Elmo's Fire
St. Elmo's fire
St. Elmo's fire is a weather phenomenon in which luminous plasma is created by a coronal discharge from a grounded object in an electric field in the atmosphere St. Elmo's fire is named after St. Erasmus of Formiae St. Elmo's fire (also St. Elmo's light) is a weather phenomenon in which luminous...

 which also launched the careers of high profile celebrities like Demi Moore
Demi Moore
Demi Guynes Kutcher , known professionally as Demi Moore, is an American actress. After minor roles in film and a role in the soap opera General Hospital, Moore established her career in films such as St...

, Joe Pesci
Joe Pesci
Joseph Frank "Joe" Pesci is an American actor, comedian, and musician.He is known for playing a variety of different roles, from violent mobsters to comedic leads to quirky sidekicks...

, Keanu Reeves
Keanu Reeves
Keanu Charles Reeves is a Canadian actor. Reeves is perhaps best known for his roles in Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure, Speed, Point Break and the science fiction-action trilogy The Matrix...

, Kevin Bacon
Kevin Bacon
Kevin Norwood Bacon is an American film and theater actor whose notable roles include Animal House, Diner, Footloose, Flatliners, Wild Things, A Few Good Men, JFK, Apollo 13, Mystic River, The Woodsman, Trapped, Friday the 13th, Hollow Man, Tremors, Death Sentence, Frost/Nixon, Crazy, Stupid, Love....

, Rob Lowe
Rob Lowe
Robert Hepler "Rob" Lowe is an American actor. Lowe came to prominence after appearing in films such as The Outsiders, Oxford Blues, About Last Night..., St. Elmo's Fire, and Wayne's World. On television, Lowe is known for his role as Sam Seaborn on The West Wing and his role as Senator Robert...

 and Patrick Swayze
Patrick Swayze
Patrick Wayne Swayze was an American actor, dancer and singer-songwriter. He was best known for his tough-guy roles, as romantic leading men in the hit films Dirty Dancing and Ghost, and as Orry Main in the North and South television miniseries. He was named by People magazine as its "Sexiest...

.

Horror films were a popular genre during the decade, with several notable horror franchises being born during the 1980s. Among the most popular were the A Nightmare on Elm Street
A Nightmare on Elm Street (franchise)
A Nightmare on Elm Street is an American horror franchise that consists of nine slasher films, a television show, novels, and comic books. The franchise began with the film series created by Wes Craven. The franchise is based on the fictional character Freddy Krueger, introduced in A Nightmare on...

, Friday the 13th and Hellraiser franchises. Aside from these films, the concept of the B horror film
B movie
A B movie is a low-budget commercial motion picture that is not definitively an arthouse or pornographic film. In its original usage, during the Golden Age of Hollywood, the term more precisely identified a film intended for distribution as the less-publicized, bottom half of a double feature....

 gave rise to a plethora of horror films that went on to earn a cult status. An example of such is the 1981 film The Evil Dead
The Evil Dead
The Evil Dead is a 1981 horror film written and directed by Sam Raimi, starring Bruce Campbell, Ellen Sandweiss, and Betsy Baker. The film is a story of five college students vacationing in an isolated cabin in a wooded area...

, which marked the directorial debut of Sam Raimi
Sam Raimi
Samuel Marshall "Sam" Raimi is an American film director, producer, actor and writer. He is best known for directing cult horror films like the Evil Dead series, Darkman and Drag Me to Hell, as well as the blockbuster Spider-Man films and the producer of the successful TV series Hercules: The...

.

Several action film franchises were also launched during the 1980s. The most popular of these were the Beverly Hills Cop
Beverly Hills Cop (film series)
Beverly Hills Cop is a series of action-comedy films, with characters written by Daniel Petrie, Jr. and Danilo Bach. The films star Eddie Murphy, Judge Reinhold and John Ashton, though Ashton does not appear in Beverly Hills Cop III. Harold Faltermeyer produced the now famous "Axel F" theme song...

, Die Hard, Lethal Weapon
Lethal Weapon (film series)
Lethal Weapon is a series of films starring Mel Gibson and Danny Glover as a pair of LAPD detectives. All four films in the series were directed by Richard Donner, and also share many of the same core cast members.-Lethal Weapon :...

 and Rambo franchises. Other action films from the decade which are of notable status include The Terminator
The Terminator
The Terminator is a 1984 science fiction action film directed by James Cameron, co-written by Cameron and William Wisher Jr., and starring Arnold Schwarzenegger, Michael Biehn, and Linda Hamilton. The film was produced by Hemdale Film Corporation and distributed by Orion Pictures, and filmed in Los...

 and Predator
Predator (film)
Predator is a 1987 American science fiction action film directed by John McTiernan, starring Arnold Schwarzenegger, Carl Weathers, Jesse Ventura, and Kevin Peter Hall. It was distributed by 20th Century Fox....

. These films propelled the careers of modern celebrities such as Arnold Schwarzenegger
Arnold Schwarzenegger
Arnold Alois Schwarzenegger is an Austrian-American former professional bodybuilder, actor, businessman, investor, and politician. Schwarzenegger served as the 38th Governor of California from 2003 until 2011....

, Bruce Willis
Bruce Willis
Walter Bruce Willis , better known as Bruce Willis, is an American actor, producer, and musician. His career began in television in the 1980s and has continued both in television and film since, including comedic, dramatic, and action roles...

, Eddie Murphy
Eddie Murphy
Edward Regan "Eddie" Murphy is an American stand-up comedian, actor, writer, singer, director, and musician....

, Mel Gibson
Mel Gibson
Mel Colm-Cille Gerard Gibson, AO is an American actor, film director, producer and screenwriter. Born in Peekskill, New York, Gibson moved with his parents to Sydney, Australia when he was 12 years old and later studied acting at the Australian National Institute of Dramatic Art.After appearing in...

 and Sylvester Stallone
Sylvester Stallone
Michael Sylvester Gardenzio Stallone , commonly known as Sylvester Stallone, and nicknamed Sly Stallone, is an American actor, filmmaker, screenwriter, film director and occasional painter. Stallone is known for his machismo and Hollywood action roles. Two of the notable characters he has portrayed...

 to international recognition.

Television


MTV
MTV
MTV, formerly an initialism of Music Television, is an American network based in New York City that launched on August 1, 1981. The original purpose of the channel was to play music videos guided by on-air hosts known as VJs....

 was launched in the United States in 1981 and had a profound impact on the music industry and popular culture
Popular culture
Popular culture is the totality of ideas, perspectives, attitudes, memes, images and other phenomena that are deemed preferred per an informal consensus within the mainstream of a given culture, especially Western culture of the early to mid 20th century and the emerging global mainstream of the...

 further ahead, especially during its early run in the 1980s and early 1990s.

Some of the most popular TV series which premiered during the 1980s include: "Alf
ALF (TV series)
ALF is an American science fiction sitcom that originally aired on NBC from 1986 to 1990, created by Paul Fusco. The title character was Gordon Shumway, a friendly extraterrestrial nicknamed ALF , who crash lands in the garage of the suburban middle-class Tanner family.The series starred Max...

", "Airwolf
Airwolf
Airwolf is an American television series that ran from 1984 until 1987. The program centers on a high-tech military helicopter, code named Airwolf, and its crew as they undertake various missions, many involving espionage, with a Cold War theme....

", "The A-Team
The A-Team
The A-Team is an American action adventure television series about a fictional group of ex-United States Army Special Forces personnel who work as soldiers of fortune, while on the run from the Army after being branded as war criminals for a "crime they didn't commit". The A-Team was created by...

", "Dynasty
Dynasty (TV series)
Dynasty is an American prime time television soap opera that aired on ABC from January 12, 1981 to May 11, 1989. It was created by Richard & Esther Shapiro and produced by Aaron Spelling, and revolved around the Carringtons, a wealthy oil family living in Denver, Colorado...

", "Dallas
Dallas (TV series)
Dallas is an American serial drama/prime time soap opera that revolves around the Ewings, a wealthy Texas family in the oil and cattle-ranching industries. Throughout the series, Larry Hagman stars as greedy, scheming oil baron J. R. Ewing...

", "Knight Rider", "MacGyver
MacGyver
MacGyver is an American action-adventure television series created by Lee David Zlotoff. Henry Winkler and John Rich were the executive producers. The show ran for seven seasons on ABC in the United States and various other networks abroad from 1985 to 1992. The series was filmed in Los Angeles...

", "Magnum, P.I.
Magnum, P.I.
Magnum, P.I. is an American television series starring Tom Selleck as Thomas Magnum, a private investigator living on Oahu, Hawaii. The series ran from 1980 to 1988 in first-run broadcast on the American CBS television network....

", "Miami Vice
Miami Vice
Miami Vice is an American television series produced by Michael Mann for NBC. The series starred Don Johnson and Philip Michael Thomas as two Metro-Dade Police Department detectives working undercover in Miami. It ran for five seasons on NBC from 1984–1989...

", "Diff'rent Strokes
Diff'rent Strokes
Diff'rent Strokes is an American television sitcom that aired on NBC from November 3, 1978 to May 4, 1985, and on ABC from September 27, 1985 to March 7, 1986...

", "The Jeffersons
The Jeffersons
The Jeffersons is an American sitcom that was broadcast on CBS from January 18, 1975, through June 25, 1985, lasting 11 seasons and a total of 253 episodes. The show was produced by the T.A.T. Communications Company from 1975–1982 and by Embassy Television from 1982-1985...

", "The Facts of Life
The Facts of Life (TV series)
The Facts of Life is an American sitcom that originally ran on the NBC television network from August 24, 1979 to May 7, 1988. A spin-off of the sitcom Diff'rent Strokes, the series' premise focused on Edna Garrett as she becomes a housemother at the fictional Eastland School, a prestigious...

", "The Cosby Show
The Cosby Show
The Cosby Show is an American television situation comedy starring Bill Cosby, which aired for eight seasons on NBC from September 20, 1984 until April 30, 1992...

", "Murder, She Wrote
Murder, She Wrote
Murder, She Wrote is an American television mystery series starring Angela Lansbury as mystery writer and amateur detective Jessica Fletcher. The series aired for 12 seasons from 1984 to 1996 on the CBS network, with 264 episodes transmitted. It was followed by four TV films and a spin-off series,...

","21 Jump Street
21 Jump Street
21 Jump Street is an American police procedural crime drama television series that aired on the Fox Network from April 12, 1987, to April 27, 1991, with a total of 103 episodes. The series focused on a squad of youthful-looking undercover police officers investigating crimes in high schools,...

", "Star Trek: The Next Generation
Star Trek: The Next Generation
Star Trek: The Next Generation is an American science fiction television series created by Gene Roddenberry as part of the Star Trek franchise. Roddenberry, Rick Berman, and Michael Piller served as executive producers at different times throughout the production...

", "Night Court
Night Court
Night Court is an American television situation comedy that aired on NBC from January 4, 1984, to May 20, 1992. The setting was the night shift of a Manhattan court, presided over by the young, unorthodox Judge Harold T. "Harry" Stone...

", "Who's the Boss?
Who's the Boss?
Who's the Boss? is an American sitcom created by Martin Cohan and Blake Hunter, which aired on ABC from September 20, 1984 to April 25, 1992...

", "Family Matters", "Quantum Leap", "Saved by the Bell
Saved by the Bell
Saved by the Bell is an American television sitcom that aired between 1989 and 1993. The series is a retooled version of the 1988 series Good Morning, Miss Bliss, which was itself later folded into the history of Saved by the Bell...

", "Roseanne
Roseanne (TV series)
Roseanne is an American sitcom broadcast on ABC from October 18, 1988 to May 20, 1997. Starring Roseanne Barr, the show revolved around the Conners, an Illinois working class family...

", "Full House
Full House
Full House is an American sitcom television series. Set in San Francisco, the show chronicles widowed father Danny Tanner, who, after the death of his wife, enlists his best friend Joey Gladstone and his brother-in-law Jesse Katsopolis to help raise his three daughters, D.J., Stephanie, and...

", "The Golden Girls
The Golden Girls
The Golden Girls is an American sitcom created by Susan Harris, which originally aired on NBC from September 14, 1985, to May 9, 1992. Starring Bea Arthur, Betty White, Rue McClanahan and Estelle Getty, the show centers on four older women sharing a home in Miami, Florida...

", "Cheers
Cheers
Cheers is an American situation comedy television series that ran for 11 seasons from 1982 to 1993. It was produced by Charles/Burrows/Charles Productions, in association with Paramount Network Television for NBC, and was created by the team of James Burrows, Glen Charles, and Les Charles...

", "Growing Pains
Growing Pains
Growing Pains is an American television sitcom about an affluent family, residing in Huntington, New York, with a working mother and a stay-at-home psychiatrist father raising three children together, which aired on ABC from September 24, 1985 to April 25, 1992.-Synopsis:The show's premise is based...

", "Family Ties
Family Ties
Family Ties is an American sitcom that aired on NBC for seven seasons, from 1982 to 1989. The sitcom reflected the move in the United States from the cultural liberalism of the 1960s and 1970s to the conservatism of the 1980s. This was particularly expressed through the relationship between young...

", "Seinfeld
Seinfeld
Seinfeld is an American television sitcom that originally aired on NBC from July 5, 1989, to May 14, 1998, lasting nine seasons, and is now in syndication. It was created by Larry David and Jerry Seinfeld, the latter starring as a fictionalized version of himself...

", "The Simpsons
The Simpsons
The Simpsons is an American animated sitcom created by Matt Groening for the Fox Broadcasting Company. The series is a satirical parody of a middle class American lifestyle epitomized by its family of the same name, which consists of Homer, Marge, Bart, Lisa and Maggie...

" and "Married... with Children
Married... with Children
Married... with Children is an American surrealistic sitcom that aired for 11 seasons that featured a dysfunctional family living in Chicago, Illinois. The show, notable for being the first prime time television series to air on Fox, ran from April 5, 1987, to June 9, 1997. The series was created...

".

The 1980s was the decade of transformation in television. Cable television
Cable television
Cable television is a system of providing television programs to consumers via radio frequency signals transmitted to televisions through coaxial cables or digital light pulses through fixed optical fibers located on the subscriber's property, much like the over-the-air method used in traditional...

 became more accessible and therefore, more popular. By the middle of the decade, almost 70% of the American population had cable television and over 85% were paying for cable services such as HBO or Showtime.

The 1980s was also the heyday of nighttime soap opera
Soap opera
A soap opera, sometimes called "soap" for short, is an ongoing, episodic work of dramatic fiction presented in serial format on radio or as television programming. The name soap opera stems from the original dramatic serials broadcast on radio that had soap manufacturers, such as Procter & Gamble,...

s such as Dallas
Dallas (TV series)
Dallas is an American serial drama/prime time soap opera that revolves around the Ewings, a wealthy Texas family in the oil and cattle-ranching industries. Throughout the series, Larry Hagman stars as greedy, scheming oil baron J. R. Ewing...

 and Dynasty
Dynasty (TV series)
Dynasty is an American prime time television soap opera that aired on ABC from January 12, 1981 to May 11, 1989. It was created by Richard & Esther Shapiro and produced by Aaron Spelling, and revolved around the Carringtons, a wealthy oil family living in Denver, Colorado...

.

TV talk shows expanded in popularity; The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson remained popular into its third decade, and some of the most viewed newer shows were hosted by Geraldo Rivera
Geraldo (TV series)
Geraldo is an American daytime television talk show hosted by Geraldo Rivera that aired in syndication from September 7, 1987, to June 12, 1998. On the last two seasons, it was known as The Geraldo Rivera Show. Both titles were produced by Investigative News Group in association with Tribune...

, Arsenio Hall
Arsenio Hall
Arsenio Hall is an American actor, comedian, and former talk show host. He is best known for his talk show The Arsenio Hall Show, which ran between 1989 and 1994, and his roles in the films Coming to America and Harlem Nights.Hall is also known for his appearance as Alan Thicke's sidekick on the...

 and David Letterman
David Letterman
David Michael Letterman is an American television host and comedian. He hosts the late night television talk show, Late Show with David Letterman, broadcast on CBS. Letterman has been a fixture on late night television since the 1982 debut of Late Night with David Letterman on NBC...

.

The 1980s also was prominent for spawning several popular children's cartoons such as "ThunderCats
ThunderCats
ThunderCats is an American animated television series that was produced by Rankin/Bass Productions debuting in 1984, based on the characters created by Tobin "Ted" Wolf. The series follows the adventures of a group of cat-like humanoid aliens...

", "Voltron
Voltron
Voltron is the titular super robot of an anime series that features a team of young pilots, known as the Voltron Force. The team’s individual vehicles join together to form the giant super robot, with which they defend the galaxy from evil...

", "Transformers
Transformers
A transformer is a device that transfers electrical energy from one circuit to another by magnetic coupling.Transformer may also refer to:* ASUS Eee Pad Transformer, an Android 3.2 Honeycomb tablet computer manufacturer by Asus...

", "Masters of the Universe
Masters of the Universe
Masters of the Universe is a media franchise created by Mattel....

", "G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero
G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero
G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero is a military-themed line of action figures and toys in Hasbro's G.I. Joe franchise. The toyline lasted from 1982 to 1994, producing well over 500 figures and 250 vehicles and playsets. The line reappeared in 1997 and has continued in one form or another to the...

", "Inspector Gadget
Inspector Gadget
Inspector Gadget is an animated television series that revolves around the adventures of a clumsy, simple-witted cyborg detective named Inspector Gadget – a human being with various bionic gadgets built into his body. Gadget's arch-nemesis is Dr...

", "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles" and "Garfield and Friends
Garfield and Friends
Garfield and Friends is an American animated television series based on the comic strip Garfield by Jim Davis. The show was produced by Film Roman, in association with United Feature Syndicate and Paws, Inc., and ran on CBS Saturday mornings from September 17, 1988 to December 10, 1994, with...

".

Sports

  • The 1980 Summer Olympics
    1980 Summer Olympics
    The 1980 Summer Olympics, officially known as the Games of the XXII Olympiad, was an international multi-sport event celebrated in Moscow in the Soviet Union. In addition, the yachting events were held in Tallinn, and some of the preliminary matches and the quarter-finals of the football tournament...

     in Moscow
    Moscow
    Moscow is the capital, the most populous city, and the most populous federal subject of Russia. The city is a major political, economic, cultural, scientific, religious, financial, educational, and transportation centre of Russia and the continent...

     were disrupted by a boycott led by the United States and 64 other countries in protest of the 1979 Soviet invasion of Afghanistan.
  • The 1980 Winter Olympics
    1980 Winter Olympics
    The 1980 Winter Olympics, officially known as the XIII Olympic Winter Games, was a multi-sport event which was celebrated from 13 February through 24 February 1980 in Lake Placid, New York, United States of America. This was the second time the Upstate New York village hosted the Games, after 1932...

     are remembered for the Miracle on Ice
    Miracle on Ice
    The "Miracle on Ice" is the name in American popular culture for a medal-round men's ice hockey game during the 1980 Winter Olympics at Lake Placid, New York, on Friday, February 22...

    , where a young United States hockey team defeated the heavily favored Soviet Red Army team and went on to win the gold medal.
  • The New York Islanders
    New York Islanders
    The New York Islanders are a professional ice hockey team based in Uniondale, New York. They are members of the Atlantic Division of the Eastern Conference of the National Hockey League...

     won the Stanley Cup
    Stanley Cup
    The Stanley Cup is an ice hockey club trophy, awarded annually to the National Hockey League playoffs champion after the conclusion of the Stanley Cup Finals. It has been referred to as The Cup, Lord Stanley's Cup, The Holy Grail, or facetiously as Lord Stanley's Mug...

     for 4 straight years in 1980
    1980 Stanley Cup Finals
    -See also:* List of Stanley Cup champions* 1979–80 NHL season* 1980 NBA Finals* 1980 World Series* Super Bowl XV-Notes:...

    , 1981
    1981 Stanley Cup Finals
    -References:...

    , 1982
    1982 Stanley Cup Finals
    -References:...

    , and 1983
    1983 Stanley Cup Finals
    -Members of New York Islanders 1980 to 1983 Dynasty:*Mike Bossy, Bob Bourne, Clark Gillies, Butch Goring, Anders Kallur, Gord Lane, Dave Langevin, Wayne Merrick, Ken Morrow, Bob Nystrom, Stefan Persson, Denis Potvin, Billy Smith, Duane Sutter, John Tonelli, Bryan Trottier *Lorne Henning , Bill...

    . The Islanders also became the second NHL expansion team after the Philadelphia Flyers
    Philadelphia Flyers
    The Philadelphia Flyers are a professional ice hockey team based in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. They are members of the Atlantic Division of the Eastern Conference of the National Hockey League...

     to win the Cup. Since their last Cup win in 1983, they are currently the only team of the four major North American sports leagues (NHL, NFL, NBA, & MLB) to win 4 consecutive championships, and hold the NHL record for most consecutive playoff series' wins at 19(1980 Playoffs - 1984 Playoffs).
  • The 1984 Summer Olympics
    1984 Summer Olympics
    The 1984 Summer Olympics, officially known as the Games of the XXIII Olympiad, was an international multi-sport event held in Los Angeles, California, United States in 1984...

     in Los Angeles were boycotted by the Soviet Union and most of the communist world (China, Romania, and Yugoslavia participated in the games) in retaliation for the 1980 boycott.
  • The 1984 Winter Olympics
    1984 Winter Olympics
    The 1984 Winter Olympics, officially known as the XIV Olympic Winter Games, was a winter multi-sport event which was celebrated from 8–19 February 1984 in Sarajevo, Yugoslavia. Other candidate cities were Sapporo, Japan; and Gothenburg, Sweden...

     are held in Sarajevo
    Sarajevo
    Sarajevo |Bosnia]], surrounded by the Dinaric Alps and situated along the Miljacka River in the heart of Southeastern Europe and the Balkans....

    , Yugoslavia
    Yugoslavia
    Yugoslavia refers to three political entities that existed successively on the western part of the Balkans during most of the 20th century....

     (now Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina
    Bosnia and Herzegovina
    Bosnia and Herzegovina , sometimes called Bosnia-Herzegovina or simply Bosnia, is a country in Southern Europe, on the Balkan Peninsula. Bordered by Croatia to the north, west and south, Serbia to the east, and Montenegro to the southeast, Bosnia and Herzegovina is almost landlocked, except for the...

    ). Yugoslavia becomes the second communist country to host the Olympic Games
    Olympic Games
    The Olympic Games is a major international event featuring summer and winter sports, in which thousands of athletes participate in a variety of competitions. The Olympic Games have come to be regarded as the world’s foremost sports competition where more than 200 nations participate...

    , but unlike the Soviet Union in 1980, there were no boycotts of the Games by western countries.
  • The Jamaica national bobsled team
    Jamaica national bobsled team
    The Jamaican national bobsleigh team represents Jamaica in international bobsledding competitions. The team first gained fame during their debut in the 1988 Winter Olympic Games in Calgary, Alberta, Canada, where they gained international fame as the ultimate underdogs, representing a tropical...

     received major media attention and stunned the world at the 1988 Winter Olympics
    1988 Winter Olympics
    The 1988 Winter Olympics, officially known as the XV Olympic Winter Games, were a winter multi-sport event celebrated in and around Calgary, Alberta, Canada from 13 to 28 February 1988. The host was selected in 1981 after having beat Falun, Sweden and Cortina d'Ampezzo, Italy...

     in Calgary
    Calgary
    Calgary is a city in the Province of Alberta, Canada. It is located in the south of the province, in an area of foothills and prairie, approximately east of the front ranges of the Canadian Rockies...

    , Canada for its unexpected good performance. It overcame the stereotype that northern countries were the only efficient competitors in winter Olympic Games due to their experiencing an actual winter. The events surrounding the Jamaica bobsled team in 1988 would lead to the creation of the Disney movie Cool Runnings
    Cool Runnings
    Cool Runnings is a 1993 comedy film directed by Jon Turteltaub. It is loosely based on the true story of the Jamaica national bobsled team's debut in the bobsleigh competition of the 1988 Winter Olympics in Calgary, Alberta. It stars Leon Robinson, Doug E. Doug, Malik Yoba, and Rawle D...

     five years later which was based on Jamaica
    Jamaica
    Jamaica is an island nation of the Greater Antilles, in length, up to in width and 10,990 square kilometres in area. It is situated in the Caribbean Sea, about south of Cuba, and west of Hispaniola, the island harbouring the nation-states Haiti and the Dominican Republic...

    's 1988 bobsled team.
  • The 1988 Summer Olympics
    1988 Summer Olympics
    The 1988 Summer Olympics, officially known as the Games of the XXIV Olympiad, were an all international multi-sport events celebrated from September 17 to October 2, 1988 in Seoul, South Korea. They were the second summer Olympic Games to be held in Asia and the first since the 1964 Summer Olympics...

     are held in Seoul
    Seoul
    Seoul , officially the Seoul Special City, is the capital and largest metropolis of South Korea. A megacity with a population of over 10 million, it is the largest city proper in the OECD developed world...

    , South Korea. Attempts to include North Korea in the games were unsuccessful, and it boycotted along with six other countries, but with 160 nations participating, it had the highest attendance of any Olympics to date.
  • FIA
    Fédération Internationale de l'Automobile
    The Fédération Internationale de l'Automobile is a non-profit association established as the Association Internationale des Automobile Clubs Reconnus on 20 June 1904 to represent the interests of motoring organisations and motor car users...

     bans Group B
    Group B
    Group B was a set of regulations introduced in 1982 for competition vehicles in sportscar racing and rallying regulated by the FIA. The Group B regulations fostered some of the quickest, most powerful and sophisticated rally cars ever built. However, a series of major accidents, some fatal, were...

     rallying
    Rallying
    Rallying, also known as rally racing, is a form of auto racing that takes place on public or private roads with modified production or specially built road-legal cars...

     after a series of deaths and injuries take place in the 1986 season.
  • Canadian hockey player Wayne Gretzky
    Wayne Gretzky
    Wayne Douglas Gretzky, CC is a Canadian former professional ice hockey player and former head coach. Nicknamed "The Great One", he is generally regarded as the best player in the history of the National Hockey League , and has been called "the greatest hockey player ever" by many sportswriters,...

    's rise to fame in the NHL would coincide with the Edmonton Oilers
    Edmonton Oilers
    The Edmonton Oilers are a professional ice hockey team based in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. They are members of the Northwest Division in the Western Conference of the National Hockey League ....

    ' first 4 Stanley Cup championships (1984
    1984 Stanley Cup Finals
    The 1984 Stanley Cup Final was held between the Edmonton Oilers and the then-defending champion New York Islanders. Edmonton was making their second-straight Finals appearance, and New York was making their fifth-straight...

    , 1985
    1985 Stanley Cup Finals
    The 1985 Stanley Cup Finals was played between the defending champion Edmonton Oilers in their third-straight Finals appearance and the Philadelphia Flyers. The Oilers would win the best-of-seven series four games to one, to win their second Stanley Cup. It was also the sixth straight Finals of...

    , 1987
    1987 Stanley Cup Finals
    The 1987 Stanley Cup Final was played between the Edmonton Oilers and the Philadelphia Flyers. The Oilers would win the series 4–3, for their third Stanley Cup victory.-Paths to the Final:...

    , & 1988
    1988 Stanley Cup Finals
    The 1988 Stanley Cup Finals was between the Edmonton Oilers and Boston Bruins. The Oilers would win the series 4–0 in five games; game four was abandoned due to a power failure at the Boston Garden with the score tied 3–3 and replayed.-Paths to the Final:...

    ) and becoming the second NHL dynasty
    Dynasty (sports)
    A sports dynasty is a team that dominates their sport or league for multiple seasons or years. Such dominance is often only realized in retrospect...

     team of the 1980s.
  • On August 9, 1988, in what became the biggest trade in NHL history (also known as "The Trade"), Wayne Gretzky was traded along with teammates Marty McSorley
    Marty McSorley
    Martin James "Marty" McSorley is a retired Canadian professional hockey player, who played in the National Hockey League from 1983 to 2000. A versatile player, he was able to play both the forward and defense positions. He is also a former head coach of the Springfield Falcons of the American...

     and Mike Krushelnyski
    Mike Krushelnyski
    Mike Krushelnyski is a retired Ukrainian-Canadian professional ice hockey centre in the NHL, and former head coach of Vityaz Chekhov in the KHL.-Playing career:...

     from Edmonton to the Los Angeles Kings
    Los Angeles Kings
    The Los Angeles Kings are a professional ice hockey team based in Los Angeles, California. They are members of the Pacific Division of the Western Conference of the National Hockey League...

     in exchange for Martin Gelinas
    Martin Gelinas
    Martin Gélinas is a former professional ice hockey forward and the current director of player development with the Nashville Predators.-Playing career:Gelinas made a splash in 1987–88 with the Hull Olympiques of the QMJHL with a 63-goal, 131-point campaign...

    , Jimmy Carson
    Jimmy Carson
    James Charles Carson is a retired American professional hockey player. He is best known for his 10 year NHL career, spent with several teams. After retiring from professional hockey, he embarked on a new career as a financial advisor....

    , three first round draft picks, and $15 million cash.
  • American basketball player Michael Jordan
    Michael Jordan
    Michael Jeffrey Jordan is a former American professional basketball player, active entrepreneur, and majority owner of the Charlotte Bobcats...

     bursts onto the scene in the NBA during the 1980s, bringing a surge in popularity for the sport and becoming one of the most beloved sports icons in the United States.
  • On November 26, 1986 Mike Tyson
    Mike Tyson
    Michael Gerard "Mike" Tyson is a retired American boxer. Tyson is a former undisputed heavyweight champion of the world and holds the record as the youngest boxer to win the WBC, WBA and IBF world heavyweight titles, he was 20 years, 4 months and 22 days old...

     became the youngest boxing Heavyweight Champion of the World at age 20.
  • West Germany won UEFA championship 1980 in Italy.
  • Italy won FIFA world cup 1982 in Spain.
  • France hosted and won the UEFA football championship in 1984.
  • Argentina won FIFA world cup 1986 in Mexico.
  • Netherlands won UEFA football championship in 1988.
  • Liverpool FC were the most successful club side of the era, becoming English champions on six occasions (1980, 1982, 1983, 1984, 1986, and 1988) and winning two European Cups (1981, 1984). They also won the FA Cup in 1986, completing the first double in their history, and four consecutive League Cup
    League Cup
    In association football, a League Cup or Secondary Cup generally signifies a cup competition for which entry is restricted only to teams in a particular league. The first national association football tournament to be called "League Cup" was held in Scotland in 1946/47 and was entitled the Scottish...

     titles from 1981 to 1984.
  • Other highly successful club sides of the 1980s include Juventus (7 major honours won), Real Madrid
    Real Madrid
    Real Madrid Club de Fútbol , commonly known as Real Madrid, is a professional football club based in Madrid, Spain. The club have won a record 31 La Liga titles, the Primera División of the Liga de Fútbol Profesional , 18 Copas del Rey, 8 Spanish Super Cups, 1 Copa Eva Duarte and 1 Copa de la...

     (10 major honors won), Bayern Munich (9 titles won) and PSV Eindhoven (4 times Dutch champions and European Cup winners in 1988).

Video gaming




  • Popular video games include: Turrican
    Turrican
    Turrican is a 1989 video game programmed and designed by Manfred Trenz. It was first developed for the Commodore 64 by Rainbow Arts, but was ported to other systems later. In addition to concept design and character creation, Trenz personally programmed Turrican on the Commodore 64...

    , Pac-Man
    Pac-Man
    is an arcade game developed by Namco and licensed for distribution in the United States by Midway, first released in Japan on May 22, 1980. Immensely popular from its original release to the present day, Pac-Man is considered one of the classics of the medium, virtually synonymous with video games,...

    , Super Mario Bros.
    Super Mario Bros.
    is a 1985 platform video game developed by Nintendo, published for the Nintendo Entertainment System as a sequel to the 1983 game Mario Bros. In Super Mario Bros., the player controls Mario as he travels through the Mushroom Kingdom in order to rescue Princess Toadstool from the antagonist...

    , The Legend of Zelda
    The Legend of Zelda
    The Legend of Zelda, originally released as in Japan, is a video game developed and published by Nintendo, and designed by Shigeru Miyamoto and Takashi Tezuka. Set in the fantasy land of Hyrule, the plot centers on a boy named Link, the playable protagonist, who aims to collect the eight fragments...

    , Donkey Kong
    Donkey Kong (video game)
    is an arcade game released by Nintendo in 1981. It is an early example of the platform game genre, as the gameplay focuses on maneuvering the main character across a series of platforms while dodging and jumping over obstacles. In the game, Jumpman must rescue a damsel in distress, Lady, from a...

    , Frogger
    Frogger
    Frogger is an arcade game introduced in 1981. It was developed by Konami, and licensed for worldwide distribution by Sega/Gremlin. The object of the game is to direct frogs to their homes one by one. To do this, each frog must avoid cars while crossing a busy road and navigate a river full of...

    , Digger, Tetris
    Tetris
    Tetris is a puzzle video game originally designed and programmed by Alexey Pajitnov in the Soviet Union. It was released on June 6, 1984, while he was working for the Dorodnicyn Computing Centre of the Academy of Science of the USSR in Moscow, Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic...

     and Golden Axe
    Golden Axe
    Golden Axe is a side-scrolling beat 'em up and hack & slash arcade video game released in 1989 by Sega for the System 16-B arcade hardware. It is the first game in the Golden Axe series....

    .
  • Pac-Man
    Pac-Man
    is an arcade game developed by Namco and licensed for distribution in the United States by Midway, first released in Japan on May 22, 1980. Immensely popular from its original release to the present day, Pac-Man is considered one of the classics of the medium, virtually synonymous with video games,...

     (1980) was the first game to achieve widespread popularity in mainstream culture and the first game character to be popular in his own right.
  • Handheld electronic LCD games introduced into the youth market segment.
  • North American video game crash of 1983
  • The primary gaming computers of the 1980s emerged in 1982: the Commodore 64
    Commodore 64
    The Commodore 64 is an 8-bit home computer introduced by Commodore International in January 1982.Volume production started in the spring of 1982, with machines being released on to the market in August at a price of US$595...

     and ZX Spectrum
    ZX Spectrum
    The ZX Spectrum is an 8-bit personal home computer released in the United Kingdom in 1982 by Sinclair Research Ltd...

    .
  • Nintendo
    Nintendo
    is a multinational corporation located in Kyoto, Japan. Founded on September 23, 1889 by Fusajiro Yamauchi, it produced handmade hanafuda cards. By 1963, the company had tried several small niche businesses, such as a cab company and a love hotel....

     finally decided in 1985 to release its Famicom in the United States under the name Nintendo Entertainment System
    Nintendo Entertainment System
    The Nintendo Entertainment System is an 8-bit video game console that was released by Nintendo in North America during 1985, in Europe during 1986 and Australia in 1987...

     (NES). It was bundled with Super Mario Bros.
    Super Mario Bros.
    is a 1985 platform video game developed by Nintendo, published for the Nintendo Entertainment System as a sequel to the 1983 game Mario Bros. In Super Mario Bros., the player controls Mario as he travels through the Mushroom Kingdom in order to rescue Princess Toadstool from the antagonist...

     and it suddenly became a success. The NES dominated the American and Japanese market until the rise of the next generation of consoles in the early 1990s, causing some to call this time the Nintendo era.
  • In 1989 Nintendo released the Game Boy
    Game Boy
    The , is an 8-bit handheld video game device developed and manufactured by Nintendo. It was released in Japan on , in North America in , and in Europe on...

    , a monochrome handheld console. Sega
    Sega
    , usually styled as SEGA, is a multinational video game software developer and an arcade software and hardware development company headquartered in Ōta, Tokyo, Japan, with various offices around the world...

     released its 16-bit console, Mega Drive/Genesis.


Fashion


The beginning of the decade was marked by the New Romantic
New Romantic
New Romanticism , was a pop culture movement in the United Kingdom that began around 1979 and peaked around 1981. Developing in London nightclubs such as Billy's and The Blitz and spreading to other major cities in the UK, it was based around flamboyant, eccentric fashion and new wave music...

 movement and later by fashion inspired by heavy metal
Heavy metal music
Heavy metal is a genre of rock music that developed in the late 1960s and early 1970s, largely in the Midlands of the United Kingdom and the United States...

 bands, including teased hair, ripped jeans and neon clothing. Some clothing and mens hairstyles had influences from the 1950s, especially in the first part of the decade.

Significant hairstyle trends of the 1980s include the Perm (started popularity in the late 1970s), the Mullet
Mullet (haircut)
The mullet is a hairstyle that is short at the front and sides, and long in the back. . The mullet began to appear in popular media in the 1960s and 1970s but did not become generally well-known until the early 1980s...

 (evolved from the 1970s to a cleaner look using hair gel
Hair gel
Hair gel is a hairstyling product that is used to stiffen hair into a particular hairstyle. The results it produces are usually similar to, but stronger than, those of hair spray and hair wax, and weaker than those of hair glue.-Types:...

), the Jheri curl
Jheri curl
The Jheri curl is a hairstyle that was common and popular in the African American community especially during the 1970s and 1980s . Invented by and named for Jheri Redding, the Jheri curl gave the wearer a glossy, loosely curled look...

, the Flattop
Flattop
A flattop is a type of very short hairstyle similar to the crew cut, with the exception that the hair on the top of the head is deliberately styled to stand up and is cut to be flat, resulting in a haircut that is square in shape...

, the Hi-top fade
Hi-top fade
A hi-top fade is a style of haircut where hair on the sides is cut off or kept very short and hair on the top of the head is very long . The hi-top has been a trend symbolizing the Golden Era of hip hop and urban contemporary music during the late 1980s and the early 1990s...

 and Big hair
Big hair
thumb|[[Dolly Parton]] in 1983.Big hair is a term that can refer to hairstyles that emphasize large volume or largely styled hair, especially when those styles make the hair occupy a large amount of space above and around the head...

.

Significant clothing trends of the 1980s include Shoulder pads, Jean jackets
Denim
Denim is a rugged cotton twill textile, in which the weft passes under two or more warp threads. This produces the familiar diagonal ribbing identifiable on the reverse of the fabric, which distinguishes denim from cotton duck. Denim has been in American usage since the late 18th century...

, Leather
Leather
Leather is a durable and flexible material created via the tanning of putrescible animal rawhide and skin, primarily cattlehide. It can be produced through different manufacturing processes, ranging from cottage industry to heavy industry.-Forms:...

 pants, Aviator jackets, Jumpsuit
Jumpsuit
Jumpsuit originally referred to the utilitarian one-piece garments used by parachuters/skydivers, but has come to be used as a common term for any one-piece garment with sleeves and legs.-Use:...

s, Diane von Fürstenberg Wrap Dress
Diane von Fürstenberg
Diane von Fürstenberg, formerly Princess Diane of Fürstenberg , is a Belgian-American fashion designer best known for her iconic wrap dress. She initially rose to prominence when she married into the German princely House of Fürstenberg, as the wife of Prince Egon of Fürstenberg...

, Members Only Jackets
Members Only
Members Only is a brand of clothing that became popular in the 1980s with the Members Only jacket. The brand was created in 1975 and introduced to American markets in 1979 by Europe Craft Imports .Members Only was renowned for their brand of jackets, which were first introduced in 1981 and...

, Skin-tight acid-washed jeans, Miniskirt
Miniskirt
A miniskirt, sometimes hyphenated as mini-skirt, is a skirt with a hemline well above the knees – generally no longer than below the buttocks; and a minidress is a dress with a similar meaning...

s, Leggings
Leggings
Leggings are a type of fitted clothing covering the legs, which can be worn by both men and women.Originally leggings were two separate garments, one for each leg....

 and Leg warmer
Leg warmer
Leg warmers are coverings for the lower legs, similar to socks but thicker and generally footless. They were originally used as dancewear by ballet and other classic dancers in order to keep the leg muscles warm and to prevent cramping or other muscle injuries....

s (popularized in the film "Flashdance
Flashdance
Another song used in the film, "Maniac", was also nominated for an Academy Award. It was written by Michael Sembello and Dennis Matkosky, and was inspired by the 1980 horror film Maniac. The lyrics about a killer on the loose were rewritten so that it could be used in Flashdance...

"), Off-the-Shoulder Shirts and Cut Sweatshirts (popularized in the film "Flashdance
Flashdance
Another song used in the film, "Maniac", was also nominated for an Academy Award. It was written by Michael Sembello and Dennis Matkosky, and was inspired by the 1980 horror film Maniac. The lyrics about a killer on the loose were rewritten so that it could be used in Flashdance...

").

Additional significant trends of the 1980s include Headband
Headband
A headband is a clothing accessory worn in the hair or around the forehead, usually to hold hair away from the face or eyes. Headbands generally consist of a loop of elastic material or a horseshoe-shaped piece of flexible plastic or metal...

s, Ray-Ban Aviator sunglasses (popularized in the film "Top Gun
Top Gun
Top Gun may refer to:* Top Gun is a 1986 film starring Tom Cruise.**Top Gun , soundtrack to the movie**Top Gun , a number of games based on the movie...

"), Ray-Ban Wayfarer sunglasses (popularized in the films "Risky Business
Risky Business
Risky Business is a 1983 American teen comedy-drama film written by Paul Brickman in his directorial debut. It stars Tom Cruise and Rebecca De Mornay. The hit film launched Cruise to stardom.-Plot:...

" and "The Blues Brothers
The Blues Brothers
The Blues Brothers are an American blues and soul revivalist band founded in 1978 by comedy actors Dan Aykroyd and John Belushi as part of a musical sketch on Saturday Night Live...

"), Swatch watches, Slap bracelet
Slap bracelet
A slap bracelet is a bracelet consisting of layered, flexible stainless steel bistable spring bands sealed within a fabric cover. The bracelet can be straightened out, creating tension within the springy metal bands...

s (popular fad among children, pre-teens and teenagers in the late 1980s and early 1990s and was available in a wide variety of patterns and colors), and the Rubik's cube
Rubik's Cube
Rubik's Cube is a 3-D mechanical puzzle invented in 1974 by Hungarian sculptor and professor of architecture Ernő Rubik.Originally called the "Magic Cube", the puzzle was licensed by Rubik to be sold by Ideal Toy Corp. in 1980 and won the German Game of the Year special award for Best Puzzle that...

 (became a popular fad throughout the decade).

World leaders



  • General Leopoldo Galtieri
    Leopoldo Galtieri
    Leopoldo Fortunato Galtieri Castelli was an Argentine general and President of Argentina from December 22, 1981 to June 18, 1982, during the last military dictatorship . The death squad Intelligence Battalion 601 directly reported to him...

     (Argentina
    Argentina
    Argentina , officially the Argentine Republic , is the second largest country in South America by land area, after Brazil. It is constituted as a federation of 23 provinces and an autonomous city, Buenos Aires...

    )
  • President Raúl Alfonsín
    Raúl Alfonsín
    Raúl Ricardo Alfonsín was an Argentine lawyer, politician and statesman, who served as the President of Argentina from December 10, 1983, to July 8, 1989. Alfonsín was the first democratically-elected president of Argentina following the military government known as the National Reorganization...

     (Argentina)
  • Chancellor Bruno Kreisky
    Bruno Kreisky
    Bruno Kreisky was an Austrian politician who served as Foreign Minister from 1959 to 1966 and as Chancellor from 1970 to 1983. Aged 72 at the end of his chancellorship, he was the oldest acting Chancellor after World War II....

     (Austria
    Austria
    Austria , officially the Republic of Austria , is a landlocked country of roughly 8.4 million people in Central Europe. It is bordered by the Czech Republic and Germany to the north, Slovakia and Hungary to the east, Slovenia and Italy to the south, and Switzerland and Liechtenstein to the...

    )
  • Chancellor Fred Sinowatz
    Fred Sinowatz
    Alfred "Fred" Sinowatz was born in Neufeld an der Leitha, Burgenland, Austria. He was an Austrian politician of the Social Democratic Party of Austria , and was Chancellor of Austria from 1983 to 1986.- Career until 1983 :Sinowatz, educated as a historian, was Minister of Education and Art in the...

     (Austria)
  • Chancellor Franz Vranitzky
    Franz Vranitzky
    Franz Vranitzky is an Austrian politician. A member of the Social Democratic Party of Austria , he was Chancellor of Austria from 1986 to 1997.-Early life and career:...

     (Austria)
  • Prime Minister Bob Hawke
    Bob Hawke
    Robert James Lee "Bob" Hawke AC GCL was the 23rd Prime Minister of Australia from March 1983 to December 1991 and therefore longest serving Australian Labor Party Prime Minister....

     (Australia
    Australia
    Australia , officially the Commonwealth of Australia, is a country in the Southern Hemisphere comprising the mainland of the Australian continent, the island of Tasmania, and numerous smaller islands in the Indian and Pacific Oceans. It is the world's sixth-largest country by total area...

    )
  • Prime Minister Malcolm Fraser
    Malcolm Fraser
    John Malcolm Fraser AC, CH, GCL, PC is a former Australian Liberal Party politician who was the 22nd Prime Minister of Australia. He came to power in the 1975 election following the dismissal of the Whitlam Labor government, in which he played a key role...

     (Australia
    Australia
    Australia , officially the Commonwealth of Australia, is a country in the Southern Hemisphere comprising the mainland of the Australian continent, the island of Tasmania, and numerous smaller islands in the Indian and Pacific Oceans. It is the world's sixth-largest country by total area...

    )
  • President João Figueiredo (Brazil
    Brazil
    Brazil , officially the Federative Republic of Brazil , is the largest country in South America. It is the world's fifth largest country, both by geographical area and by population with over 192 million people...

    )
  • President José Sarney
    José Sarney
    José Sarney de Araújo Costa is a Brazilian lawyer, writer and politician. He served as president of Brazil from 15 March 1985 to 15 March 1990....

     (Brazil)
  • Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau
    Pierre Trudeau
    Joseph Philippe Pierre Yves Elliott Trudeau, , usually known as Pierre Trudeau or Pierre Elliott Trudeau, was the 15th Prime Minister of Canada from April 20, 1968 to June 4, 1979, and again from March 3, 1980 to June 30, 1984.Trudeau began his political career campaigning for socialist ideals,...

     (Canada
    Canada
    Canada is a North American country consisting of ten provinces and three territories. Located in the northern part of the continent, it extends from the Atlantic Ocean in the east to the Pacific Ocean in the west, and northward into the Arctic Ocean...

    )
  • Prime Minister Brian Mulroney
    Brian Mulroney
    Martin Brian Mulroney, was the 18th Prime Minister of Canada from September 17, 1984, to June 25, 1993 and was leader of the Progressive Conservative Party of Canada from 1983 to 1993. His tenure as Prime Minister was marked by the introduction of major economic reforms, such as the Canada-U.S...

     (Canada)
  • General Augusto Pinochet
    Augusto Pinochet
    Augusto José Ramón Pinochet Ugarte, more commonly known as Augusto Pinochet , was a Chilean army general and dictator who assumed power in a coup d'état on 11 September 1973...

     (Chile
    Chile
    Chile ,officially the Republic of Chile , is a country in South America occupying a long, narrow coastal strip between the Andes mountains to the east and the Pacific Ocean to the west. It borders Peru to the north, Bolivia to the northeast, Argentina to the east, and the Drake Passage in the far...

    )
  • Deng Xiaoping
    Deng Xiaoping
    Deng Xiaoping was a Chinese politician, statesman, and diplomat. As leader of the Communist Party of China, Deng was a reformer who led China towards a market economy...

     (People's Republic of China
    People's Republic of China
    China , officially the People's Republic of China , is the most populous country in the world, with over 1.3 billion citizens. Located in East Asia, the country covers approximately 9.6 million square kilometres...

    )
  • President Chiang Ching-kuo
    Chiang Ching-kuo
    Chiang Ching-kuo , Kuomintang politician and leader, was the son of President Chiang Kai-shek and held numerous posts in the government of the Republic of China...

     (Republic of China
    Republic of China
    The Republic of China , commonly known as Taiwan , is a unitary sovereign state located in East Asia. Originally based in mainland China, the Republic of China currently governs the island of Taiwan , which forms over 99% of its current territory, as well as Penghu, Kinmen, Matsu and other minor...

     on Taiwan)
  • President Julio César Turbay Ayala
    Julio César Turbay Ayala
    Julio César Turbay Ayala was a Colombian politician, member of the Colombian Liberal Party, elected president of the Senate of Colombia and and, was president of Colombia from 1978 to 1982.- Biographic data :...

     (Colombia
    Colombia
    Colombia, officially the Republic of Colombia , is a unitary constitutional republic comprising thirty-two departments. The country is located in northwestern South America, bordered to the east by Venezuela and Brazil; to the south by Ecuador and Peru; to the north by the Caribbean Sea; to the...

    )
  • President Belisario Betancur Cuartas(Colombia
    Colombia
    Colombia, officially the Republic of Colombia , is a unitary constitutional republic comprising thirty-two departments. The country is located in northwestern South America, bordered to the east by Venezuela and Brazil; to the south by Ecuador and Peru; to the north by the Caribbean Sea; to the...

    )
  • President Virgilio Barco Vargas
    Virgilio Barco Vargas
    Virgilio Barco Vargas was a politician and diplomat from Colombia. He was a member of the Colombian Liberal Party and served as president of Colombia from August 7, 1986 until August 7, 1990....

     (Colombia
    Colombia
    Colombia, officially the Republic of Colombia , is a unitary constitutional republic comprising thirty-two departments. The country is located in northwestern South America, bordered to the east by Venezuela and Brazil; to the south by Ecuador and Peru; to the north by the Caribbean Sea; to the...

    )
  • Prime Minister Poul Schlüter
    Poul Schlüter
    Poul Holmskov Schlüter is a Danish politician, who served as Prime Minister of Denmark from 1982 to 1993.Born in Tønder, south Jutland, he graduated from the University of Copenhagen in 1957 with a degree in law, and joined the bar in 1960. Schlüter was a member of the Danish Parliament for the...

     (Denmark
    Denmark
    Denmark is a Scandinavian country in Northern Europe. The countries of Denmark and Greenland, as well as the Faroe Islands, constitute the Kingdom of Denmark . It is the southernmost of the Nordic countries, southwest of Sweden and south of Norway, and bordered to the south by Germany. Denmark...

    )
  • Erich Honecker
    Erich Honecker
    Erich Honecker was a German communist politician who led the German Democratic Republic as General Secretary of the Socialist Unity Party from 1971 until 1989, serving as Head of State as well from Willi Stoph's relinquishment of that post in 1976....

     (East Germany)
  • President Anwar Sadat
    Anwar Sadat
    Muhammad Anwar al-Sadat was the third President of Egypt, serving from 15 October 1970 until his assassination by fundamentalist army officers on 6 October 1981...

     (Egypt
    Egypt
    Egypt , officially the Arab Republic of Egypt, Arabic: , is a country mainly in North Africa, with the Sinai Peninsula forming a land bridge in Southwest Asia. Egypt is thus a transcontinental country, and a major power in Africa, the Mediterranean Basin, the Middle East and the Muslim world...

    ) - until 1981
  • President Hosni Mubarak
    Hosni Mubarak
    Muhammad Hosni Sayyid Mubarak is a former Egyptian politician and military commander. He served as the fourth President of Egypt from 1981 to 2011....

     (Egypt
    Egypt
    Egypt , officially the Arab Republic of Egypt, Arabic: , is a country mainly in North Africa, with the Sinai Peninsula forming a land bridge in Southwest Asia. Egypt is thus a transcontinental country, and a major power in Africa, the Mediterranean Basin, the Middle East and the Muslim world...

    )
  • President Daniel Ortega
    Daniel Ortega
    José Daniel Ortega Saavedra is a Nicaraguan politician and revolutionary, currently serving as the 83rd President of Nicaragua, a position that he has held since 2007. He previously served as the 79th President, between 1985 and 1990, and for much of his life, has been a leader in the Sandinista...

     (Nicaragua
    Nicaragua
    Nicaragua is the largest country in the Central American American isthmus, bordered by Honduras to the north and Costa Rica to the south. The country is situated between 11 and 14 degrees north of the Equator in the Northern Hemisphere, which places it entirely within the tropics. The Pacific Ocean...

    )
  • President Mengistu Haile Mariam
    Mengistu Haile Mariam
    Mengistu Haile Mariam is a politician who was formerly the most prominent officer of the Derg, the Communist military junta that governed Ethiopia from 1974 to 1987, and the President of the People's Democratic Republic of Ethiopia from 1987 to 1991...

     (Ethiopia
    Ethiopia
    Ethiopia , officially known as the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia, is a country located in the Horn of Africa. It is the second-most populous nation in Africa, with over 82 million inhabitants, and the tenth-largest by area, occupying 1,100,000 km2...

    )
  • President Urho Kekkonen
    Urho Kekkonen
    Urho Kaleva Kekkonen , was a Finnish politician who served as Prime Minister of Finland and later as the eighth President of Finland . Kekkonen continued the “active neutrality” policy of his predecessor President Juho Kusti Paasikivi, a doctrine which came to be known as the “Paasikivi–Kekkonen...

     (Finland
    Finland
    Finland , officially the Republic of Finland, is a Nordic country situated in the Fennoscandian region of Northern Europe. It is bordered by Sweden in the west, Norway in the north and Russia in the east, while Estonia lies to its south across the Gulf of Finland.Around 5.4 million people reside...

    )
  • President Mauno Koivisto
    Mauno Koivisto
    Mauno Henrik Koivisto is a Finnish politician who served as the ninth President of Finland from 1982 to 1994. He also served as Prime Minister 1968–1970 and 1979–1982...

     (Finland)
  • President François Mitterrand
    François Mitterrand
    François Maurice Adrien Marie Mitterrand was the 21st President of the French Republic and ex officio Co-Prince of Andorra, serving from 1981 until 1995. He is the longest-serving President of France and, as leader of the Socialist Party, the only figure from the left so far elected President...

     (France
    France
    The French Republic , The French Republic , The French Republic , (commonly known as France , is a unitary semi-presidential republic in Western Europe with several overseas territories and islands located on other continents and in the Indian, Pacific, and Atlantic oceans. Metropolitan France...

    )
  • Prime Minister Andreas Papandreou
    Andreas Papandreou
    Andreas G. Papandreou ; 5 February 1919 – 23 June 1996) was a Greek economist, a socialist politician and a dominant figure in Greek politics. The son of Georgios Papandreou, Andreas was a Harvard-trained academic...

     (Greece
    Greece
    Greece , officially the Hellenic Republic , and historically Hellas or the Republic of Greece in English, is a country in southeastern Europe....

    )
  • Prime Minister Indira Gandhi
    Indira Gandhi
    Indira Priyadarshini Gandhara was an Indian politician who served as the third Prime Minister of India for three consecutive terms and a fourth term . She was assassinated by Sikh extremists...

     (India
    India
    India , officially the Republic of India , is a country in South Asia. It is the seventh-largest country by geographical area, the second-most populous country with over 1.2 billion people, and the most populous democracy in the world...

    )

  • Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi
    Rajiv Gandhi
    Rajiv Ratna Gandhi was the sixth Prime Minister of India . He took office after his mother's assassination on 31 October 1984; he himself was assassinated on 21 May 1991. He became the youngest Prime Minister of India when he took office at the age of 40.Rajiv Gandhi was the elder son of Indira...

     (India)
  • President Suharto (Indonesia
    Indonesia
    Indonesia , officially the Republic of Indonesia , is a country in Southeast Asia and Oceania. Indonesia is an archipelago comprising approximately 13,000 islands. It has 33 provinces with over 238 million people, and is the world's fourth most populous country. Indonesia is a republic, with an...

    )
  • Supreme Leader Ruhollah Khomeini
    Ruhollah Khomeini
    Grand Ayatollah Sayyed Ruhollah Musavi Khomeini was an Iranian religious leader and politician, and leader of the 1979 Iranian Revolution which saw the overthrow of Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, the Shah of Iran...

     (Iran
    Iran
    Iran , officially the Islamic Republic of Iran , is a country in Southern and Western Asia. The name "Iran" has been in use natively since the Sassanian era and came into use internationally in 1935, before which the country was known to the Western world as Persia...

    )
  • President Abulhassan Banisadr (Iran
    Iran
    Iran , officially the Islamic Republic of Iran , is a country in Southern and Western Asia. The name "Iran" has been in use natively since the Sassanian era and came into use internationally in 1935, before which the country was known to the Western world as Persia...

    )
  • President Mohammad-Ali Rajai (Iran
    Iran
    Iran , officially the Islamic Republic of Iran , is a country in Southern and Western Asia. The name "Iran" has been in use natively since the Sassanian era and came into use internationally in 1935, before which the country was known to the Western world as Persia...

    )
  • President Ali Khamenei
    Ali Khamenei
    Ayatollah Seyed Ali Hoseyni Khāmene’i is the Supreme Leader of Iran and the figurative head of the Muslim conservative establishment in Iran and Twelver Shi'a marja...

     (Iran
    Iran
    Iran , officially the Islamic Republic of Iran , is a country in Southern and Western Asia. The name "Iran" has been in use natively since the Sassanian era and came into use internationally in 1935, before which the country was known to the Western world as Persia...

    )
  • Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei
    Ali Khamenei
    Ayatollah Seyed Ali Hoseyni Khāmene’i is the Supreme Leader of Iran and the figurative head of the Muslim conservative establishment in Iran and Twelver Shi'a marja...

     (Iran
    Iran
    Iran , officially the Islamic Republic of Iran , is a country in Southern and Western Asia. The name "Iran" has been in use natively since the Sassanian era and came into use internationally in 1935, before which the country was known to the Western world as Persia...

    ) - from 1989
  • President Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani
    Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani
    Ayatollah Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani is an influential Iranian politician and writer, who was the fourth President of Iran. He was a member of the Assembly of Experts until his resignation in 2011...

     (Iran
    Iran
    Iran , officially the Islamic Republic of Iran , is a country in Southern and Western Asia. The name "Iran" has been in use natively since the Sassanian era and came into use internationally in 1935, before which the country was known to the Western world as Persia...

    ) - from 1989
  • President Saddam Hussein
    Saddam Hussein
    Saddam Hussein Abd al-Majid al-Tikriti was the fifth President of Iraq, serving in this capacity from 16 July 1979 until 9 April 2003...

     (Iraq
    Iraq
    Iraq ; officially the Republic of Iraq is a country in Western Asia spanning most of the northwestern end of the Zagros mountain range, the eastern part of the Syrian Desert and the northern part of the Arabian Desert....

    )
  • President Patrick Hillery
    Patrick Hillery
    Patrick John "Paddy" Hillery was an Irish politician and the sixth President of Ireland from 1976 until 1990. First elected at the 1951 general election as a Fianna Fáil Teachta Dála for Clare, he remained in Dáil Éireann until 1973...

     (Ireland
    Republic of Ireland
    Ireland , described as the Republic of Ireland , is a sovereign state in Europe occupying approximately five-sixths of the island of the same name. Its capital is Dublin. Ireland, which had a population of 4.58 million in 2011, is a constitutional republic governed as a parliamentary democracy,...

    )
  • Taoiseach Charles Haughey
    Charles Haughey
    Charles James "Charlie" Haughey was Taoiseach of Ireland, serving three terms in office . He was also the fourth leader of Fianna Fáil...

     (Ireland
    Ireland
    Ireland is an island to the northwest of continental Europe. It is the third-largest island in Europe and the twentieth-largest island on Earth...

    )
  • Taoiseach Garret FitzGerald
    Garret FitzGerald
    Garret FitzGerald was an Irish politician who was twice Taoiseach of Ireland, serving in office from July 1981 to February 1982 and again from December 1982 to March 1987. FitzGerald was elected to Seanad Éireann in 1965 and was subsequently elected to Dáil Éireann as a Fine Gael TD in 1969. He...

     (Ireland
    Ireland
    Ireland is an island to the northwest of continental Europe. It is the third-largest island in Europe and the twentieth-largest island on Earth...

    )
  • Prime Minister Menachem Begin
    Menachem Begin
    ' was a politician, founder of Likud and the sixth Prime Minister of the State of Israel. Before independence, he was the leader of the Zionist militant group Irgun, the Revisionist breakaway from the larger Jewish paramilitary organization Haganah. He proclaimed a revolt, on 1 February 1944,...

     (Israel
    Israel
    The State of Israel is a parliamentary republic located in the Middle East, along the eastern shore of the Mediterranean Sea...

    )
  • Prime Minister Shimon Peres
    Shimon Peres
    GCMG is the ninth President of the State of Israel. Peres served twice as the eighth Prime Minister of Israel and once as Interim Prime Minister, and has been a member of 12 cabinets in a political career spanning over 66 years...

     (Israel)
  • Emperor Hirohito
    Hirohito
    , posthumously in Japan officially called Emperor Shōwa or , was the 124th Emperor of Japan according to the traditional order, reigning from December 25, 1926, until his death in 1989. Although better known outside of Japan by his personal name Hirohito, in Japan he is now referred to...

     (Japan
    Japan
    Japan is an island nation in East Asia. Located in the Pacific Ocean, it lies to the east of the Sea of Japan, China, North Korea, South Korea and Russia, stretching from the Sea of Okhotsk in the north to the East China Sea and Taiwan in the south...

    )
  • Prime Minister Yasuhiro Nakasone
    Yasuhiro Nakasone
    is a Japanese politician who served as Prime Minister of Japan from November 27, 1982 to November 6, 1987. A contemporary of Brian Mulroney, Ronald Reagan, Helmut Kohl, François Mitterrand, Margaret Thatcher, and Mikhail Gorbachev, he is best known for pushing through the privatization of...

     (Japan)
  • Emir Jabir al-Ahmad al-Jabir al-Sabah (Kuwait
    Kuwait
    The State of Kuwait is a sovereign Arab state situated in the north-east of the Arabian Peninsula in Western Asia. It is bordered by Saudi Arabia to the south at Khafji, and Iraq to the north at Basra. It lies on the north-western shore of the Persian Gulf. The name Kuwait is derived from the...

    )
  • President Muammar Gaddafi
    Muammar Gaddafi
    Muammar Muhammad Abu Minyar Gaddafi or "September 1942" 20 October 2011), commonly known as Muammar Gaddafi or Colonel Gaddafi, was the official ruler of the Libyan Arab Republic from 1969 to 1977 and then the "Brother Leader" of the Libyan Arab Jamahiriya from 1977 to 2011.He seized power in a...

     (Libya
    Libya
    Libya is an African country in the Maghreb region of North Africa bordered by the Mediterranean Sea to the north, Egypt to the east, Sudan to the southeast, Chad and Niger to the south, and Algeria and Tunisia to the west....

    )
  • Pope John Paul II
    Pope John Paul II
    Blessed Pope John Paul II , born Karol Józef Wojtyła , reigned as Pope of the Catholic Church and Sovereign of Vatican City from 16 October 1978 until his death on 2 April 2005, at of age. His was the second-longest documented pontificate, which lasted ; only Pope Pius IX ...

  • President Hastings Kamuzu Banda (Malawi
    Malawi
    The Republic of Malawi is a landlocked country in southeast Africa that was formerly known as Nyasaland. It is bordered by Zambia to the northwest, Tanzania to the northeast, and Mozambique on the east, south and west. The country is separated from Tanzania and Mozambique by Lake Malawi. Its size...

    )
  • Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad (Malaysia)
  • Prime Minister Dom Mintoff
    Dom Mintoff
    Dom Mintoff is a Maltese politician, journalist and architect, who served as leader of the Labour Party from 1949 to 1984, Prime Minister of Malta from 1955 to 1958 and again, post-Independence, from 1971 to...

     (Malta
    Malta
    Malta , officially known as the Republic of Malta , is a Southern European country consisting of an archipelago situated in the centre of the Mediterranean, south of Sicily, east of Tunisia and north of Libya, with Gibraltar to the west and Alexandria to the east.Malta covers just over in...

    )
  • Prime Minister Karmenu Mifsud Bonnici
    Karmenu Mifsud Bonnici
    Carmelo Bonnici was the Prime Minister of Malta from 1984 to 1987. He is a member of the Labour Party. He studied law at the University of Malta and is known to be an expert in industrial relations law.-Early politics:Mifsud Bonnici was from a family that staunchly supported the Partit...

     (Malta
    Malta
    Malta , officially known as the Republic of Malta , is a Southern European country consisting of an archipelago situated in the centre of the Mediterranean, south of Sicily, east of Tunisia and north of Libya, with Gibraltar to the west and Alexandria to the east.Malta covers just over in...

    )
  • Prime Minister Eddie Fenech Adami
    Eddie Fenech Adami
    Edward “Eddie” Fenech Adami is a Maltese politician who was Prime Minister of Malta from 1987 until 1996 and again from 1998 until 2004...

     (Malta
    Malta
    Malta , officially known as the Republic of Malta , is a Southern European country consisting of an archipelago situated in the centre of the Mediterranean, south of Sicily, east of Tunisia and north of Libya, with Gibraltar to the west and Alexandria to the east.Malta covers just over in...

    )
  • President Miguel de la Madrid Hurtado (Mexico
    Mexico
    The United Mexican States , commonly known as Mexico , is a federal constitutional republic in North America. It is bordered on the north by the United States; on the south and west by the Pacific Ocean; on the southeast by Guatemala, Belize, and the Caribbean Sea; and on the east by the Gulf of...

    )
  • President Samora Machel
    Samora Machel
    Samora Moisés Machel was a Mozambican military commander, revolutionary socialist leader and eventual President of Mozambique...

     (Mozambique
    Mozambique
    Mozambique, officially the Republic of Mozambique , is a country in southeastern Africa bordered by the Indian Ocean to the east, Tanzania to the north, Malawi and Zambia to the northwest, Zimbabwe to the west and Swaziland and South Africa to the southwest...

    )
  • Prime Minister Robert Muldoon
    Robert Muldoon
    Sir Robert David "Rob" Muldoon, GCMG, CH served as the 31st Prime Minister of New Zealand from 1975 to 1984, as leader of the governing National Party. Muldoon had been a prominent member of the National party and MP for the Tamaki electorate for some years prior to becoming leader of the party...

     (New Zealand
    New Zealand
    New Zealand is an island country in the south-western Pacific Ocean comprising two main landmasses and numerous smaller islands. The country is situated some east of Australia across the Tasman Sea, and roughly south of the Pacific island nations of New Caledonia, Fiji, and Tonga...

    )
  • Prime Minister David Lange
    David Lange
    David Russell Lange, ONZ, CH , served as the 32nd Prime Minister of New Zealand from 1984 to 1989. He headed New Zealand's fourth Labour Government, one of the most reforming administrations in his country's history, but one which did not always conform to traditional expectations of a...

     (New Zealand)
  • Prime Minister Geoffrey Palmer (New Zealand)
  • Queen Beatrix
    Beatrix of the Netherlands
    Beatrix is the Queen regnant of the Kingdom of the Netherlands comprising the Netherlands, Curaçao, Sint Maarten, and Aruba. She is the first daughter of Queen Juliana of the Netherlands and Prince Bernhard of Lippe-Biesterfeld. She studied law at Leiden University...

     (Netherlands
    Netherlands
    The Netherlands is a constituent country of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, located mainly in North-West Europe and with several islands in the Caribbean. Mainland Netherlands borders the North Sea to the north and west, Belgium to the south, and Germany to the east, and shares maritime borders...

    )
  • Prime Minister Ruud Lubbers
    Ruud Lubbers
    Rudolphus Franciscus Marie "Ruud" Lubbers is a retired Dutch politician of the Christian Democratic Appeal . He served as Prime Minister of the Netherlands from November 4, 1982 until August 22, 1994....

     (Netherlands)
  • General Muhammad Zia-ul-Haq
    Muhammad Zia-ul-Haq
    General Muhammad Zia-ul-Haq , was the 4th Chief Martial Law Administrator and the sixth President of Pakistan from July 1977 to his death in August 1988...

     (Pakistan
    Pakistan
    Pakistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan is a sovereign state in South Asia. It has a coastline along the Arabian Sea and the Gulf of Oman in the south and is bordered by Afghanistan and Iran in the west, India in the east and China in the far northeast. In the north, Tajikistan...

    )
  • General Manuel Noriega
    Manuel Noriega
    Manuel Antonio Noriega Moreno is a Panamanian politician and soldier. He was military dictator of Panama from 1983 to 1989.The 1989 invasion of Panama by the United States removed him from power; he was captured, detained as a prisoner of war, and flown to the United States. Noriega was tried on...

     (Panama
    Panama
    Panama , officially the Republic of Panama , is the southernmost country of Central America. Situated on the isthmus connecting North and South America, it is bordered by Costa Rica to the northwest, Colombia to the southeast, the Caribbean Sea to the north and the Pacific Ocean to the south. The...

    )

  • President Ferdinand Marcos
    Ferdinand Marcos
    Ferdinand Emmanuel Edralin Marcos, Sr. was a Filipino leader and an authoritarian President of the Philippines from 1965 to 1986. He was a lawyer, member of the Philippine House of Representatives and a member of the Philippine Senate...

     (Philippines
    Philippines
    The Philippines , officially known as the Republic of the Philippines , is a country in Southeast Asia in the western Pacific Ocean. To its north across the Luzon Strait lies Taiwan. West across the South China Sea sits Vietnam...

    )
  • President Corazon Aquino
    Corazon Aquino
    Maria Corazon Sumulong Cojuangco-Aquino was the 11th President of the Philippines and the first woman to hold that office in Philippine history. She is best remembered for leading the 1986 People Power Revolution, which toppled Ferdinand Marcos and restored democracy in the Philippines...

     (Philippines
    Philippines
    The Philippines , officially known as the Republic of the Philippines , is a country in Southeast Asia in the western Pacific Ocean. To its north across the Luzon Strait lies Taiwan. West across the South China Sea sits Vietnam...

    )
  • President Wojciech Jaruzelski
    Wojciech Jaruzelski
    Wojciech Witold Jaruzelski is a retired Polish military officer and Communist politician. He was the last Communist leader of Poland from 1981 to 1989, Prime Minister from 1981 to 1985 and the country's head of state from 1985 to 1990. He was also the last commander-in-chief of the Polish People's...

     (Poland
    Poland
    Poland , officially the Republic of Poland , is a country in Central Europe bordered by Germany to the west; the Czech Republic and Slovakia to the south; Ukraine, Belarus and Lithuania to the east; and the Baltic Sea and Kaliningrad Oblast, a Russian exclave, to the north...

    )
  • President Nicolae Ceauşescu
    Nicolae Ceausescu
    Nicolae Ceaușescu was a Romanian Communist politician. He was General Secretary of the Romanian Communist Party from 1965 to 1989, and as such was the country's second and last Communist leader...

     (Romania
    Romania
    Romania is a country located at the crossroads of Central and Southeastern Europe, on the Lower Danube, within and outside the Carpathian arch, bordering on the Black Sea...

    )
  • Head of State Malietoa Tanumafili II (Samoa
    Samoa
    Samoa , officially the Independent State of Samoa, formerly known as Western Samoa is a country encompassing the western part of the Samoan Islands in the South Pacific Ocean. It became independent from New Zealand in 1962. The two main islands of Samoa are Upolu and one of the biggest islands in...

    )
  • King Khaled (Saudi Arabia
    Saudi Arabia
    The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia , commonly known in British English as Saudi Arabia and in Arabic as as-Sa‘ūdiyyah , is the largest state in Western Asia by land area, constituting the bulk of the Arabian Peninsula, and the second-largest in the Arab World...

    )
  • King Fahd
    Fahd of Saudi Arabia
    Fahd bin Abdul Aziz Al Saud, Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, was King of Saudi Arabia from 1982 to 2005...

     (Saudi Arabia
    Saudi Arabia
    The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia , commonly known in British English as Saudi Arabia and in Arabic as as-Sa‘ūdiyyah , is the largest state in Western Asia by land area, constituting the bulk of the Arabian Peninsula, and the second-largest in the Arab World...

    )
  • Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew
    Lee Kuan Yew
    Lee Kuan Yew, GCMG, CH is a Singaporean statesman. He was the first Prime Minister of the Republic of Singapore, governing for three decades...

     (Singapore
    Singapore
    Singapore , officially the Republic of Singapore, is a Southeast Asian city-state off the southern tip of the Malay Peninsula, north of the equator. An island country made up of 63 islands, it is separated from Malaysia by the Straits of Johor to its north and from Indonesia's Riau Islands by the...

    )
  • President and Prime Minister P.W. Botha
    Pieter Willem Botha
    Pieter Willem Botha , commonly known as "P. W." and Die Groot Krokodil , was the prime minister of South Africa from 1978 to 1984 and the first executive state president from 1984 to 1989.First elected to Parliament in 1948, Botha was for eleven years head of the Afrikaner National Party and the...

     (South Africa
    South Africa
    The Republic of South Africa is a country in southern Africa. Located at the southern tip of Africa, it is divided into nine provinces, with of coastline on the Atlantic and Indian oceans...

    )
  • President Chun Doo-hwan
    Chun Doo-hwan
    Chun Doo-hwan was a ROK Army general and the President of South Korea from 1980 to 1988. Chun was sentenced to death in 1996 for his heavy-handed response to the Gwangju Democratization Movement, but later pardoned by President Kim Young-sam with the advice of then President-elect Kim Dae-jung,...

     (South Korea
    South Korea
    The Republic of Korea , , is a sovereign state in East Asia, located on the southern portion of the Korean Peninsula. It is neighbored by the People's Republic of China to the west, Japan to the east, North Korea to the north, and the East China Sea and Republic of China to the south...

    )
  • General Secretary Leonid Brezhnev
    Leonid Brezhnev
    Leonid Ilyich Brezhnev  – 10 November 1982) was the General Secretary of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union , presiding over the country from 1964 until his death in 1982. His eighteen-year term as General Secretary was second only to that of Joseph Stalin in...

     (Soviet Union
    Soviet Union
    The Soviet Union , officially the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics , was a constitutionally socialist state that existed in Eurasia between 1922 and 1991....

    )
  • General Secretary Mikhail Gorbachev
    Mikhail Gorbachev
    Mikhail Sergeyevich Gorbachev is a former Soviet statesman, having served as General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union from 1985 until 1991, and as the last head of state of the USSR, having served from 1988 until its dissolution in 1991...

     (Soviet Union
    Soviet Union
    The Soviet Union , officially the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics , was a constitutionally socialist state that existed in Eurasia between 1922 and 1991....

    )
  • King Juan Carlos (Spain
    Spain
    Spain , officially the Kingdom of Spain languages]] under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages. In each of these, Spain's official name is as follows:;;;;;;), is a country and member state of the European Union located in southwestern Europe on the Iberian Peninsula...

    )
  • President Felipe González
    Felipe González
    Felipe González Márquez is a Spanish socialist politician. He was the General Secretary of the Spanish Socialist Workers' Party from 1974 to 1997. To date, he remains the longest-serving Prime Minister of Spain, after having served four successive mandates from 1982 to 1996.-Early life:Felipe was...

     (Spain
    Spain
    Spain , officially the Kingdom of Spain languages]] under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages. In each of these, Spain's official name is as follows:;;;;;;), is a country and member state of the European Union located in southwestern Europe on the Iberian Peninsula...

    )
  • Prime Minister Ranasinghe Premadasa
    Ranasinghe Premadasa
    Ranasinghe Premadasa was the 3rd President of Sri Lanka from January 2, 1989 to May 1, 1993. Before that, he served as the Prime Minister in the government headed by J. R. Jayewardene from February 6, 1978 to January 1, 1989...

     of Sri Lanka
  • Prime Minister Olof Palme
    Olof Palme
    Sven Olof Joachim Palme was a Swedish politician. A long-time protegé of Prime Minister Tage Erlander, Palme led the Swedish Social Democratic Party from 1969 to his assassination, and was a two-term Prime Minister of Sweden, heading a Privy Council Government from 1969 to 1976 and a cabinet...

     (Sweden
    Sweden
    Sweden , officially the Kingdom of Sweden , is a Nordic country on the Scandinavian Peninsula in Northern Europe. Sweden borders with Norway and Finland and is connected to Denmark by a bridge-tunnel across the Öresund....

    )
  • President Hafiz Al-Asad (Syria
    Syria
    Syria , officially the Syrian Arab Republic , is a country in Western Asia, bordering Lebanon and the Mediterranean Sea to the West, Turkey to the north, Iraq to the east, Jordan to the south, and Israel to the southwest....

    )
  • Prime Minister Prem Tinsulanonda
    Prem Tinsulanonda
    General Prem Tinsulanonda is a retired Thai military officer who served as Prime Minister of Thailand from March 3, 1980 to August 4, 1988. He now serves as the Head of the Privy Council of the King of Thailand, Bhumibol Adulyadej....

     (Thailand
    Thailand
    Thailand , officially the Kingdom of Thailand , formerly known as Siam , is a country located at the centre of the Indochina peninsula and Southeast Asia. It is bordered to the north by Burma and Laos, to the east by Laos and Cambodia, to the south by the Gulf of Thailand and Malaysia, and to the...

    )
  • Prime Minister Turgut Ozal (Turkey)
  • Elizabeth II (United Kingdom
    United Kingdom
    The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern IrelandIn the United Kingdom and Dependencies, other languages have been officially recognised as legitimate autochthonous languages under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages...

     and the Commonwealth Realm
    Commonwealth Realm
    A Commonwealth realm is a sovereign state within the Commonwealth of Nations that has Elizabeth II as its monarch and head of state. The sixteen current realms have a combined land area of 18.8 million km² , and a population of 134 million, of which all, except about two million, live in the six...

    s)
  • Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher
    Margaret Thatcher
    Margaret Hilda Thatcher, Baroness Thatcher, was Prime Minister of the United Kingdom from 1979 to 1990...

     (United Kingdom)
  • President Jimmy Carter
    Jimmy Carter
    James Earl "Jimmy" Carter, Jr. is an American politician who served as the 39th President of the United States and was the recipient of the 2002 Nobel Peace Prize, the only U.S. President to have received the Prize after leaving office...

     (United States) - until 1981
  • President Ronald Reagan
    Ronald Reagan
    Ronald Wilson Reagan was the 40th President of the United States , the 33rd Governor of California and, prior to that, a radio, film and television actor....

     (United States)
  • President George H.W. Bush (United States
    United States
    The United States of America is a federal constitutional republic comprising fifty states and a federal district...

    ) - from 1989
  • Chancellor Helmut Schmidt
    Helmut Schmidt
    Helmut Heinrich Waldemar Schmidt is a German Social Democratic politician who served as Chancellor of West Germany from 1974 to 1982. Prior to becoming chancellor, he had served as Minister of Defence and Minister of Finance. He had also served briefly as Minister of Economics and as acting...

     (West Germany
    West Germany
    West Germany is the common English, but not official, name for the Federal Republic of Germany or FRG in the period between its creation in May 1949 to German reunification on 3 October 1990....

    )
  • Chancellor Helmut Kohl
    Helmut Kohl
    Helmut Josef Michael Kohl is a German conservative politician and statesman. He was Chancellor of Germany from 1982 to 1998 and the chairman of the Christian Democratic Union from 1973 to 1998...

     (West Germany)
  • President Josip Broz Tito
    Josip Broz Tito
    Marshal Josip Broz Tito – 4 May 1980) was a Yugoslav revolutionary and statesman. While his presidency has been criticized as authoritarian, Tito was a popular public figure both in Yugoslavia and abroad, viewed as a unifying symbol for the nations of the Yugoslav federation...

     (Yugoslavia)
  • President Mobutu Sese Seko
    Mobutu Sese Seko
    Mobutu Sese Seko Nkuku Ngbendu wa Za Banga , commonly known as Mobutu or Mobutu Sese Seko , born Joseph-Désiré Mobutu, was the President of the Democratic Republic of the Congo from 1965 to 1997...

     (Zaire
    Zaire
    The Republic of Zaire was the name of the present Democratic Republic of the Congo between 27 October 1971 and 17 May 1997. The name of Zaire derives from the , itself an adaptation of the Kongo word nzere or nzadi, or "the river that swallows all rivers".-Self-proclaimed Father of the Nation:In...

    )
  • President Robert Mugabe
    Robert Mugabe
    Robert Gabriel Mugabe is the President of Zimbabwe. As one of the leaders of the liberation movement against white-minority rule, he was elected into power in 1980...

     (Zimbabwe
    Zimbabwe
    Zimbabwe is a landlocked country located in the southern part of the African continent, between the Zambezi and Limpopo rivers. It is bordered by South Africa to the south, Botswana to the southwest, Zambia and a tip of Namibia to the northwest and Mozambique to the east. Zimbabwe has three...

    )
  • Prime Minister Robert Muldoon
    Robert Muldoon
    Sir Robert David "Rob" Muldoon, GCMG, CH served as the 31st Prime Minister of New Zealand from 1975 to 1984, as leader of the governing National Party. Muldoon had been a prominent member of the National party and MP for the Tamaki electorate for some years prior to becoming leader of the party...

    , David Lange
    David Lange
    David Russell Lange, ONZ, CH , served as the 32nd Prime Minister of New Zealand from 1984 to 1989. He headed New Zealand's fourth Labour Government, one of the most reforming administrations in his country's history, but one which did not always conform to traditional expectations of a...

    , (New Zealand
    New Zealand
    New Zealand is an island country in the south-western Pacific Ocean comprising two main landmasses and numerous smaller islands. The country is situated some east of Australia across the Tasman Sea, and roughly south of the Pacific island nations of New Caledonia, Fiji, and Tonga...

    )


Entertainers



  • Michael J. Fox
    Michael J. Fox
    Michael J. Fox, OC is a Canadian American actor, author, producer, activist and voice-over artist. With a film and television career spanning from the late 1970s, Fox's roles have included Marty McFly from the Back to the Future trilogy ; Alex P...

  • Woody Allen
    Woody Allen
    Woody Allen is an American screenwriter, director, actor, comedian, jazz musician, author, and playwright. Allen's films draw heavily on literature, sexuality, philosophy, psychology, Jewish identity, and the history of cinema...

  • Eddie Murphy
    Eddie Murphy
    Edward Regan "Eddie" Murphy is an American stand-up comedian, actor, writer, singer, director, and musician....

  • Christopher Lloyd
    Christopher Lloyd
    Christopher Allen Lloyd is an American actor. He is best known for playing Emmett Brown in the Back to the Future trilogy, Uncle Fester in The Addams Family and Addams Family Values, and Judge Doom in Who Framed Roger Rabbit. He played Reverend Jim Ignatowski in the television series Taxi and more...

  • Whoopi Goldberg
    Whoopi Goldberg
    Whoopi Goldberg is an American comedian, actress, singer-songwriter, political activist, author and talk show host.Goldberg made her film debut in The Color Purple playing Celie, a mistreated black woman in the Deep South. She received a nomination for the Academy Award for Best Actress and won...

  • Arnold Schwarzenegger
    Arnold Schwarzenegger
    Arnold Alois Schwarzenegger is an Austrian-American former professional bodybuilder, actor, businessman, investor, and politician. Schwarzenegger served as the 38th Governor of California from 2003 until 2011....

  • Sylvester Stallone
    Sylvester Stallone
    Michael Sylvester Gardenzio Stallone , commonly known as Sylvester Stallone, and nicknamed Sly Stallone, is an American actor, filmmaker, screenwriter, film director and occasional painter. Stallone is known for his machismo and Hollywood action roles. Two of the notable characters he has portrayed...

  • Chuck Norris
    Chuck Norris
    Carlos Ray "Chuck" Norris is an American martial artist and actor. After serving in the United States Air Force, he began his rise to fame as a martial artist and has since founded his own school, Chun Kuk Do...

  • Tom Cruise
    Tom Cruise
    Thomas Cruise Mapother IV , better known as Tom Cruise, is an American film actor and producer. He has been nominated for three Academy Awards and he has won three Golden Globe Awards....

  • Sigourney Weaver
    Sigourney Weaver
    Sigourney Weaver is an American actress. She is best known for her critically acclaimed role of Ellen Ripley in the four Alien films: Alien, Aliens, Alien 3 and Alien Resurrection, for which she has received worldwide recognition .Other notable roles include Dana...

  • Linda Hamilton
    Linda Hamilton
    Linda Carroll Hamilton is an American actress best known for her portrayal of Sarah Connor in The Terminator and its sequel Terminator 2: Judgment Day and Catherine Chandler in the television series Beauty and the Beast, for which she was nominated for two Golden Globes and an Emmy...

  • Jennifer Grey
    Jennifer Grey
    Jennifer Elise Grey is an American actress. Her first major roles came in the 1984 war film Red Dawn and the 1986 comedy Ferris Bueller's Day Off. In 1987 she starred as Frances "Baby" Houseman in the hit film Dirty Dancing for which she was nominated for a Golden Globe. In the early 1990s, Grey...

  • Patrick Swayze
    Patrick Swayze
    Patrick Wayne Swayze was an American actor, dancer and singer-songwriter. He was best known for his tough-guy roles, as romantic leading men in the hit films Dirty Dancing and Ghost, and as Orry Main in the North and South television miniseries. He was named by People magazine as its "Sexiest...

  • David Hasselhoff
    David Hasselhoff
    David Michael Hasselhoff is an American actor, singer, producer and businessman. He is best known for his lead roles as Michael Knight in the popular 1980s US series Knight Rider and as L.A. County Lifeguard Mitch Buchannon in the series Baywatch...


  • Matthew Broderick
    Matthew Broderick
    Matthew Broderick is an American film and stage actor who, among other roles, played the title character in Ferris Bueller's Day Off, Adult Simba in The Lion King film series, and Leo Bloom in the film and Broadway productions of The Producers.He has won two Tony Awards, one in 1983 for his...

  • Michael Keaton
    Michael Keaton
    Michael John Douglas , better known by the stage name Michael Keaton, is an American actor known for his early comedic roles, most notably his performance as the title character of Tim Burton's Beetlejuice . Keaton is also famous for his dramatic portrayal of Bruce Wayne/Batman in Tim Burton's...

  • Prince
    Prince (musician)
    Prince Rogers Nelson , often known simply as Prince, is an American singer, songwriter, musician, and actor. Prince has produced ten platinum albums and thirty Top 40 singles during his career. Prince founded his own recording studio and label; writing, self-producing and playing most, or all, of...

  • Christopher Reeve
    Christopher Reeve
    Christopher D'Olier Reeve was an American actor, film director, producer, screenwriter, author and activist...

  • Harrison Ford
    Harrison Ford
    Harrison Ford is an American film actor and producer. He is famous for his performances as Han Solo in the original Star Wars trilogy and as the title character of the Indiana Jones film series. Ford is also known for his roles as Rick Deckard in Blade Runner, John Book in Witness and Jack Ryan in...

  • Mark Hamill
    Mark Hamill
    Mark Richard Hamill is an American actor, voice artist, producer, director, and writer, best known for his role as Luke Skywalker in the original trilogy of Star Wars. More recently, he has received acclaim for his voice work, in such roles as the Joker in Batman: The Animated Series, Firelord...

  • John Travolta
    John Travolta
    John Joseph Travolta is an American actor, dancer and singer. Travolta first became known in the 1970s, after appearing on the television series Welcome Back, Kotter and starring in the box office successes Saturday Night Fever and Grease...

  • John Belushi
    John Belushi
    John Adam Belushi was an American comedian, actor, and musician, best known as one of the original cast members of the NBC sketch comedy show Saturday Night Live, The Star of the Films National Lampoon's Animal House and the The Blues Brothers and for fronting the American blues and soul...

  • Warren Beatty
    Warren Beatty
    Warren Beatty born March 30, 1937) is an American actor, producer, screenwriter and director. He has received a total of fourteen Academy Award nominations, winning one for Best Director in 1982. He has also won four Golden Globe Awards including the Cecil B. DeMille Award.-Early life and...

  • Dustin Hoffman
    Dustin Hoffman
    Dustin Lee Hoffman is an American actor with a career in film, television, and theatre since 1960. He has been known for his versatile portrayals of antiheroes and vulnerable characters....

  • Robert De Niro
    Robert De Niro
    Robert De Niro, Jr. is an American actor, director and producer. His first major film roles were in Bang the Drum Slowly and Mean Streets, both in 1973...

  • Al Pacino
    Al Pacino
    Alfredo James "Al" Pacino is an American film and stage actor and director. He is famous for playing mobsters, including Michael Corleone in The Godfather trilogy, Tony Montana in Scarface, Alphonse "Big Boy" Caprice in Dick Tracy and Carlito Brigante in Carlito's Way, though he has also appeared...

  • Dan Aykroyd
    Dan Aykroyd
    Daniel Edward "Dan" Aykroyd, CM is a Canadian comedian, actor, screenwriter, musician, winemaker and ufologist. He was an original cast member of Saturday Night Live, an originator of The Blues Brothers and Ghostbusters and has had a long career as a film actor and screenwriter.-Early...

  • Bill Murray
    Bill Murray
    William James "Bill" Murray is an American actor and comedian. He first gained national exposure on Saturday Night Live in which he earned an Emmy Award and later went on to star in a number of critically and commercially successful comedic films, including Caddyshack , Ghostbusters , and...



  • Patrick Stewart
    Patrick Stewart
    Sir Patrick Hewes Stewart, OBE is an English film, television and stage actor, who has had a distinguished career in theatre and television for around half a century...

  • Hulk Hogan
    Hulk Hogan
    Terrance Gene "Terry" Bollea , better known by his ring name Hulk Hogan, is an American Semi-retired professional wrestler, actor, television personality, and musician currently signed to Total Nonstop Action Wrestling ....

  • Alan Alda
    Alan Alda
    Alphonso Joseph D'Abruzzo , better known as Alan Alda, is an American actor, director, screenwriter, and author. A six-time Emmy Award and Golden Globe Award winner, he is best known for his role as Hawkeye Pierce in the TV series M*A*S*H...

  • John Ritter
    John Ritter
    Jonathan Southworth "John" Ritter was an American actor, voice over artist and comedian perhaps best known for having played Jack Tripper and Paul Hennessy in the ABC sitcoms Three's Company and 8 Simple Rules, respectively...

  • Ted Danson
    Ted Danson
    Edward Bridge “Ted” Danson III is an American actor best known for his role as central character Sam Malone in the sitcom Cheers, and his role as Dr. John Becker on the series Becker. He also plays a recurring role on Larry David's HBO sitcom Curb Your Enthusiasm and starred alongside Glenn Close...

  • Tom Selleck
    Tom Selleck
    Thomas William "Tom" Selleck is an American actor, and film producer. He is best known for his starring role as Hawaii-based private investigator Thomas Magnum on the 1980s television show Magnum, P.I.. He also plays Police Chief Jesse Stone in a series of made-for-TV movies based on the Robert B....

  • Don Johnson
    Don Johnson
    Donnie Wayne "Don" Johnson is an American actor known for his work in television and film. He played the lead role of James "Sonny" Crockett in the 1980s TV cop series, Miami Vice, which led him to huge success. He also played the lead role in the 1990s cop series, Nash Bridges...

  • Bruce Willis
    Bruce Willis
    Walter Bruce Willis , better known as Bruce Willis, is an American actor, producer, and musician. His career began in television in the 1980s and has continued both in television and film since, including comedic, dramatic, and action roles...

  • Richard Dean Anderson
    Richard Dean Anderson
    Richard Dean Anderson is an American television and film actor, producer and composer. He began his television career in 1976 as Dr. Jeff Webber in the American soap opera series General Hospital, then rose to prominence as the lead actor in the television series MacGyver...

  • Bill Cosby
    Bill Cosby
    William Henry "Bill" Cosby, Jr. is an American comedian, actor, author, television producer, educator, musician and activist. A veteran stand-up performer, he got his start at various clubs, then landed a starring role in the 1960s action show, I Spy. He later starred in his own series, the...

  • Marlon Brando
    Marlon Brando
    Marlon Brando, Jr. was an American movie star and political activist. "Unchallenged as the most important actor in modern American Cinema" according to the St...

  • Mel Gibson
    Mel Gibson
    Mel Colm-Cille Gerard Gibson, AO is an American actor, film director, producer and screenwriter. Born in Peekskill, New York, Gibson moved with his parents to Sydney, Australia when he was 12 years old and later studied acting at the Australian National Institute of Dramatic Art.After appearing in...

  • Clint Eastwood
    Clint Eastwood
    Clinton "Clint" Eastwood, Jr. is an American film actor, director, producer, composer and politician. Eastwood first came to prominence as a supporting cast member in the TV series Rawhide...

  • Danny DeVito
    Danny DeVito
    Daniel Michael DeVito, Jr. , better known as Danny DeVito, is an American actor, comedian, director and producer. He first gained prominence for his portrayal of Louie De Palma on the ABC and NBC television series Taxi , for which he won a Golden Globe and an Emmy.DeVito and his wife, Rhea Perlman,...



Musicians



  • A-ha
    A-ha
    A-ha were a Norwegian pop band formed in Oslo in 1982. The band was founded by Morten Harket , Magne Furuholmen , and Pål Waaktaar...

  • AC/DC
    AC/DC
    AC/DC are an Australian rock band, formed in 1973 by brothers Malcolm and Angus Young. Commonly classified as hard rock, they are considered pioneers of heavy metal, though they themselves have always classified their music as simply "rock and roll"...

  • Aerosmith
    Aerosmith
    Aerosmith is an American rock band, sometimes referred to as "The Bad Boys from Boston" and "America's Greatest Rock and Roll Band". Their style, which is rooted in blues-based hard rock, has come to also incorporate elements of pop, heavy metal, and rhythm and blues, and has inspired many...

  • Alabama
    Alabama (band)
    Alabama is a country music and southern rock band from Fort Payne, Alabama, United States. The band was founded in 1969 by Randy Owen and his cousin Teddy Gentry , soon joined by Jeff Cook...

  • Anthrax
    Anthrax (band)
    Anthrax is an American heavy metal band from New York City, formed in 1981. Founded by guitarists Scott Ian and Danny Lilker, the band has since released ten studio albums and 20 singles, and an EP featuring Public Enemy. The band was one of the most popular of the 1980s thrash metal scene...

  • Axl Rose
    Axl Rose
    W. Axl Rose is an American singer-songwriter and musician. He is the lead vocalist and only remaining original member of the hard rock band Guns N' Roses, with whom he enjoyed great success and recognition in the late 1980s and early 1990s, before disappearing from the public eye for several years...

  • Kenny Loggins
    Kenny Loggins
    During the next decade, Loggins recorded so many successful songs for film soundtracks that he was referred to as, King of the Movie Soundtrack.He began with "I'm Alright" , "Mr. Night", and "Lead the Way" from Caddyshack...

  • The B-52's
    The B-52's
    The B-52's are an American rock band, formed in Athens, Georgia in 1976. The original line-up consisted of Fred Schneider , Kate Pierson , Cindy Wilson , Ricky Wilson , and Keith Strickland . Following Ricky Wilson's death in 1985 Strickland switched to guitar...

  • Bad Religion
    Bad Religion
    Bad Religion is a punk rock band that formed in Los Angeles in 1979. Their current line-up consists of Greg Graffin , Brett Gurewitz , Jay Bentley , Greg Hetson , Brian Baker and Brooks Wackerman . Gurewitz is also the founder of the label Epitaph Records, which has released almost all of the...

  • Belinda Carlisle
    Belinda Carlisle
    Belinda Jo Carlisle is an American singer who gained worldwide fame as the lead vocalist of the Go-Go's, one of the most successful all-female bands and the first such group whose members wrote their own songs and played their own instruments...

  • Billy Idol
    Billy Idol
    William Michael Albert Broad , better known by his stage name Billy Idol, is an English rock musician. A member of the Bromley Contingent of Sex Pistols fans, Idol first achieved fame in the punk rock era as a member of the band Generation X...

  • Billy Joel
    Billy Joel
    William Martin "Billy" Joel is an American musician and pianist, singer-songwriter, and classical composer. Since releasing his first hit song, "Piano Man", in 1973, Joel has become the sixth best-selling recording artist and the third best-selling solo artist in the United States, according to...

  • Black Flag
    Black Flag (band)
    Black Flag was an American punk rock band formed in 1976 in Hermosa Beach, California. The band was established by Greg Ginn, the guitarist, primary songwriter and sole continuous member through multiple personnel changes in the band...

  • Bobby Brown
    Bobby Brown
    Robert Barisford "Bobby" Brown is an American R&B singer-songwriter, occasional rapper, and dancer. After success in pop group New Edition, Brown began his solo career in 1987 and had a string of Top 10 Billboard hits, culminating in a Grammy Award. He was a pioneer of New Jack Swing music, a...

  • Bob Marley
    Bob Marley
    Robert Nesta "Bob" Marley, OM was a Jamaican singer-songwriter and musician. He was the rhythm guitarist and lead singer for the ska, rocksteady and reggae band Bob Marley & The Wailers...

  • Bon Jovi
    Bon Jovi
    Bon Jovi is an American rock band from Sayreville, New Jersey. Formed in 1983, Bon Jovi consists of lead singer and namesake Jon Bon Jovi , guitarist Richie Sambora, keyboardist David Bryan, drummer Tico Torres, as well as current bassist Hugh McDonald...

  • Bonham
    Bonham (band)
    Bonham was a British hard rock band founded by drummer Jason Bonham in 1989, the son of the late Led Zeppelin drummer John Bonham. The band's most successful line-up included singer Daniel MacMaster, bassist/keyboardist John Smithson and guitarist Ian Hatton....

  • Boy George
    Boy George
    Boy George is a British singer-songwriter who was part of the English New Romantic movement which emerged in the early 1980s. He helped give androgyny an international stage with the success of Culture Club during the 1980s. His music is often classified as blue-eyed soul, which is influenced by...

  • Bryan Adams
    Bryan Adams
    Bryan Adams, is a Canadian rock singer-songwriter, guitarist, bassist, producer, actor and photographer. Adams has won dozens of awards and nominations, including 20 Juno Awards among 56 nominations. He has also received 15 Grammy Award nominations including a win for Best Song Written...

  • Bryan Ferry
    Bryan Ferry
    Bryan Ferry, CBE is an English singer, musician, and songwriter. Ferry came to public prominence in the early 1970s as lead vocalist and principal songwriter with the band Roxy Music, who enjoyed a highly successful career with three number one albums and ten singles entering the top ten charts in...

  • Bruce Springsteen
    Bruce Springsteen
    Bruce Frederick Joseph Springsteen , nicknamed "The Boss," is an American singer-songwriter who records and tours with the E Street Band...

  • Cher
    Cher
    Cher is an American recording artist, television personality, actress, director, record producer and philanthropist. Referred to as the Goddess of Pop, she has won an Academy Award, a Grammy Award, an Emmy Award, three Golden Globes and a Cannes Film Festival Award among others for her work in...

  • Chris de Burgh
    Chris de Burgh
    Chris de Burgh is a British/Irish singer-songwriter. He is most famous for his 1986 love song "The Lady in Red".-Early life:...

  • The Cure
    The Cure
    The Cure are an English rock band formed in Crawley, West Sussex in 1976. The band has experienced several line-up changes, with frontman, vocalist, guitarist and principal songwriter Robert Smith being the only constant member...

  • Culture Club
    Culture Club
    Culture Club are a British rock band who were part of the 1980s New Romantic movement. The original band consisted of Boy George , Mikey Craig , Roy Hay and Jon Moss...

  • Wang Chung
    Wang Chung (band)
    Wang Chung are an English New Wave musical group.The group found their greatest success in America, with five Top 40 hits in the US, all charting between 1983 and 1987, including "Dance Hall Days" , "Everybody Have Fun Tonight" and "Let's Go!" .-Pre-history: The Intellektuals and 57 Men :Jeremy...

  • Cyndi Lauper
    Cyndi Lauper
    Cynthia Ann Stephanie "Cyndi" Lauper is an American singer, songwriter, actress and LGBT rights activist. She achieved success in the mid-1980s with the release of the album She's So Unusual and became the first female singer to have four top-five singles released from one album...

  • R.E.M.
    R.E.M.
    R.E.M. was an American rock band formed in Athens, Georgia, in 1980 by singer Michael Stipe, guitarist Peter Buck, bassist Mike Mills and drummer Bill Berry. One of the first popular alternative rock bands, R.E.M. gained early attention due to Buck's ringing, arpeggiated guitar style and Stipe's...

  • David Bowie
    David Bowie
    David Bowie is an English musician, actor, record producer and arranger. A major figure for over four decades in the world of popular music, Bowie is widely regarded as an innovator, particularly for his work in the 1970s...

  • Def Leppard
    Def Leppard
    Def Leppard are an English rock band formed in 1977 in Sheffield as part of the New Wave of British Heavy Metal movement. Since 1992, the band have consisted of Joe Elliott , Rick Savage , Rick Allen , Phil Collen , and Vivian Campbell...

  • Depeche Mode
    Depeche Mode
    Depeche Mode are an English electronic music band formed in 1980 in Basildon, Essex. The group's original line-up consisted of Dave Gahan , Martin Gore , Andy Fletcher and Vince Clarke...

  • Dire Straits
    Dire Straits
    Dire Straits were a British rock band active from 1977 to 1995, composed of Mark Knopfler , his younger brother David Knopfler , John Illsley , and Pick Withers .Dire Straits' sound drew from a variety of musical influences, including jazz, folk, blues, and came closest...

  • Duran Duran
    Duran Duran
    Duran Duran are an English band, formed in Birmingham in 1978. They were one of the most successful bands of the 1980s and a leading band in the MTV-driven "Second British Invasion" of the United States...


  • Talking Heads
    Talking Heads
    Talking Heads were an American New Wave and avant-garde band formed in 1975 in New York City and active until 1991. The band comprised David Byrne, Chris Frantz, Tina Weymouth and Jerry Harrison...

  • Devo
    Devo
    Devo is an American band formed in 1973 consisting of members from Kent and Akron, Ohio. The classic line-up of the band includes two sets of brothers, the Mothersbaughs and the Casales . The band had a #14 Billboard chart hit in 1980 with the single "Whip It", and has maintained a cult...

  • Eddie Van Halen
    Eddie Van Halen
    Edward Lodewijk "Eddie" Van Halen is a Dutch-American guitarist, keyboardist, songwriter and producer, best known as the lead guitarist and co-founder of the hard rock band Van Halen, inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame...

  • Five Star
    Five Star
    Five Star are a British pop / R&B group, formed in 1983. Comprising siblings Stedman, Lorraine, Denise, Doris and Delroy Pearson, they were known for their flamboyant image, matching costumes and heavily choreographed dance routines...

  • Freddie Mercury
    Freddie Mercury
    Freddie Mercury was a British musician, singer and songwriter, best known as the lead vocalist of the rock band Queen. As a performer, he was known for his flamboyant stage persona and powerful vocals over a four-octave range...

  • GWAR
    GWAR
    Gwar is a satirical heavy metal band formed in Richmond, Virginia, United States, in 1984. The band is best known for its elaborate science fiction/horror film inspired costumes, obscene lyrics and graphic stage performances, which feature humorous enactments of politically and morally taboo...

  • George Harrison
    George Harrison
    George Harrison, MBE was an English musician, guitarist, singer-songwriter, actor and film producer who achieved international fame as lead guitarist of The Beatles. Often referred to as "the quiet Beatle", Harrison became over time an admirer of Indian mysticism, and introduced it to the other...

  • George Michael
    George Michael
    George Michael is a British musician, singer, songwriter and record producer who rose to fame in the 1980s when he formed the pop duo Wham! with his school friend, Andrew Ridgeley...

  • George Strait
    George Strait
    George Harvey Strait is an American country music singer, actor, and music producer. Strait is referred to as the "King of Country," and critics call Strait a living legend. He is known for his unique style of western swing music, bar-room ballads, honky-tonk style, and fresh yet traditional...

  • Guns N' Roses
    Guns N' Roses
    Guns N' Roses is an American hard rock band, formed in Hollywood, Los Angeles, California, in 1985. The band has released six studio albums, three EPs, and one live album...

  • Huey Lewis and the News
    Huey Lewis and the News
    Huey Lewis and the News is an American rock band based in San Francisco, California. They had a run of hit singles during the 1980s and early 1990s, eventually scoring a total of 19 top-ten singles across the Billboard Hot 100, Adult Contemporary and Mainstream Rock charts...

  • Iron Maiden
    Iron Maiden
    Iron Maiden are an English heavy metal band from Leyton in east London, formed in 1975 by bassist and primary songwriter Steve Harris. Since their inception, the band's discography has grown to include a total of thirty-six albums: fifteen studio albums; eleven live albums; four EPs; and six...

  • Irene Cara
    Irene Cara
    Irene Cara is an American singer and actress. Cara won an Academy Award in 1984 in the category of Best Original Song for co-writing "Flashdance... What a Feeling." She is also known for her recording of the song "Fame", and she also starred in the 1980 film Fame.She married Hollywood stuntman...

  • Jason Donovan
    Jason Donovan
    Jason Donovan is an Australian actor and singer. He initially achieved fame in the Australian soap opera Neighbours, before beginning a career in music in 1988. In the UK he has sold over 3 million records, and his début album Ten Good Reasons was one of the highest-selling albums of 1989...

  • Jefferson Starship
    Jefferson Starship
    Jefferson Starship is an American rock band formed in the early 1970s. The group is a spin-off from the iconic 1960s psychedelic/folk group Jefferson Airplane. The band has undergone several major changes in personnel and genres through the years while retaining the same Jefferson Starship name...

  • Joan Jett
    Joan Jett
    Joan Jett is an American rock guitarist, singer, songwriter, producer and actress.She is best known for her work with Joan Jett & the Blackhearts including their hit cover "I Love Rock 'n' Roll", which was #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 from March 20 to May 1, 1982, as well as for their other popular...

  • John Lennon
    John Lennon
    John Winston Lennon, MBE was an English musician and singer-songwriter who rose to worldwide fame as one of the founding members of The Beatles, one of the most commercially successful and critically acclaimed acts in the history of popular music...

  • Journey
    Journey (band)
    Journey is an American rock band formed in 1973 in San Francisco by former members of Santana. The band has gone through several phases; its strongest commercial success occurred between the 1978 and 1987, after which it temporarily disbanded...

  • Joy
    Joy (band)
    Joy is an 80s Europop band from Austria, best known for their biggest hits Touch By Touch and Valerie.-History:The band Joy was formed in Bad Aussee, an Austrian town of 7500 citizens. Freddy Jaklitsch , Manfred Temmel and Andy Schweitzer were school friends, but after the graduation all three...

  • Judas Priest
    Judas Priest
    Judas Priest are an English heavy metal band from Birmingham, England, formed in 1969. The current line-up consists of lead vocalist Rob Halford, guitarists Glenn Tipton and Richie Faulkner, bassist Ian Hill, and drummer Scott Travis. The band has gone through several drummers over the years,...

  • Thomas Dolby
    Thomas Dolby
    Thomas Dolby is an English musician and producer. Best known for his 1982 hit "She Blinded Me with Science", and 1984 single "Hyperactive!", he has also worked extensively in production and as a session musician.-Early life:Dolby was born in London, England, contrary to information in early 1980s...

  • Kajagoogoo
    Kajagoogoo
    Kajagoogoo are a British pop band, best known for their hit single, "Too Shy", which reached No. 1 in the UK Singles Chart and No. 5 on the U.S...

  • Kim Carnes
    Kim Carnes
    Kim Carnes is an American singer-songwriter. She is a two-time Grammy Award winner noted for her distinctive raspy vocal style. Some people have called her "The Female Rod Stewart" due to her raspy voice....

  • Kim Wilde
    Kim Wilde
    Kim Wilde is an English pop singer, author and television presenter who burst onto the music scene in 1981 with the number 2 UK Singles Chart new wave classic "Kids in America". In 1987 she had a major hit in the United States when her version of The Supremes' classic "You Keep Me Hangin' On"...

  • Kiss
    KISS (band)
    Kiss is an American rock band formed in New York City in January 1973. Well-known for its members' face paint and flamboyant stage outfits, the group rose to prominence in the mid to late 1970s on the basis of their elaborate live performances, which featured fire breathing, blood spitting,...

  • Kylie Minogue
    Kylie Minogue
    Kylie Ann Minogue, OBE - often known simply as Kylie - is an Australian singer, recording artist, songwriter, and actress. After beginning her career as a child actress on Australian television, she achieved recognition through her role in the television soap opera Neighbours, before commencing...

  • Laura Branigan
    Laura Branigan
    Laura Ann Branigan was an American singer-songwriter and actress of Italian and Irish ancestry. She is best known in the United States for her 1982 Platinum-certified hit "Gloria" and in Europe for the number-one single "Self Control"...

  • Limahl
    Limahl
    Christopher Hamill better known by his stage name Limahl is an English pop singer. He rose to fame as the lead singer of the 1980s pop group Kajagoogoo, before embarking on a briefly successful solo career, which reached its peak with the 1984 hit "The NeverEnding Story", taken from the film of...

  • Lionel Richie
    Lionel Richie
    Lionel Brockman Richie, Jr. , is an American singer-songwriter, musician and record producer. Since 1968, he has been a member of the musical group Commodores signed to Motown Records...

  • Madonna
    Madonna (entertainer)
    Madonna is an American singer-songwriter, actress and entrepreneur. Born in Bay City, Michigan, she moved to New York City in 1977 to pursue a career in modern dance. After performing in the music groups Breakfast Club and Emmy, she released her debut album in 1983...

  • Megadeth
    Megadeth
    Megadeth is an American heavy metal band from Los Angeles, California which was formed in 1983 by guitarist/vocalist Dave Mustaine, bassist Dave Ellefson and guitarist Greg Handevidt, following Mustaine's expulsion from Metallica. The band has since released 13 studio albums, three live albums, two...

  • Metallica
    Metallica
    Metallica is an American heavy metal band from Los Angeles, California. Formed in 1981 when James Hetfield responded to an advertisement that drummer Lars Ulrich had posted in a local newspaper. The current line-up features long-time lead guitarist Kirk Hammett and bassist Robert Trujillo ...

  • Motley Crue
    Mötley Crüe
    Mötley Crüe is an American heavy metal band formed in Los Angeles, California in 1981. The group was founded by bass guitarist Nikki Sixx and drummer Tommy Lee, who were later joined by lead guitarist Mick Mars and lead singer Vince Neil...

  • Michael Jackson
    Michael Jackson
    Michael Joseph Jackson was an American recording artist, entertainer, and businessman. Referred to as the King of Pop, or by his initials MJ, Jackson is recognized as the most successful entertainer of all time by Guinness World Records...

  • Nick Kamen
    Nick Kamen
    Nick Kamen is an English male model, songwriter and musician, and brother of session guitarist Chester Kamen and artist Barry Kamen.-Career:...

  • Paul Simon
    Paul Simon
    Paul Frederic Simon is an American singer-songwriter and guitarist.Simon is best known for his success, beginning in 1965, as part of the duo Simon & Garfunkel, with musical partner Art Garfunkel. Simon wrote most of the pair's songs, including three that reached number one on the US singles...


  • Peter Cetera
    Peter Cetera
    Peter Paul Cetera is an American singer, songwriter, bassist and producer best known for being an original member of the rock band Chicago, before launching a successful solo career...

  • Peter Gabriel
    Peter Gabriel
    Peter Brian Gabriel is an English singer, musician, and songwriter who rose to fame as the lead vocalist and flautist of the progressive rock group Genesis. After leaving Genesis, Gabriel went on to a successful solo career...

  • Pet Shop Boys
    Pet Shop Boys
    Pet Shop Boys are an English electronic dance music duo, consisting of Neil Tennant, who provides main vocals, keyboards and occasional guitar, and Chris Lowe on keyboards....

  • Phil Collins
    Phil Collins
    Philip David Charles "Phil" Collins, LVO is an English singer-songwriter, drummer, pianist and actor best known as a drummer and vocalist for British progressive rock group Genesis and as a solo artist....

  • Philip Oakey
    Philip Oakey
    Philip Oakey is an English composer, singer, songwriter and producer.He is best known as the lead singer, frontman and co-founder of the famous English synthpop band The Human League. He has also had an extensive solo music career and collaborated with numerous other artists and producers...

  • Tears for Fears
    Tears for Fears
    Tears for Fears are an English new wave band formed in the early 1980s by Roland Orzabal and Curt Smith.Founded after the dissolution of their first band, the mod-influenced Graduate, they were initially associated with the New Wave synthesiser bands of the early 1980s but later branched out into...

  • Prince
    Prince (musician)
    Prince Rogers Nelson , often known simply as Prince, is an American singer, songwriter, musician, and actor. Prince has produced ten platinum albums and thirty Top 40 singles during his career. Prince founded his own recording studio and label; writing, self-producing and playing most, or all, of...

  • Ratt
    Ratt
    Ratt is an American heavy metal band that had significant commercial success in the 1980s. The band is best known for songs such as "Round and Round," "Wanted Man," "Lay It Down," "You're in Love", "Slip of the Lip", "Back For More", "Dance", "Body Talk", "I Want a Woman", and "Way Cool Jr." Ratt...

  • Reba McEntire
    Reba McEntire
    Reba Nell McEntire is an American country music artist and actress. She began her career in the music industry as a high school student singing in the Kiowa High School band , on local radio shows with her siblings, and at rodeos. As a solo act, she was invited to perform at a rodeo in Oklahoma...

  • Richard Marx
    Richard Marx
    Richard Noel Marx is an American adult contemporary and pop/rock singer, songwriter, musician, and record producer. He had a string of hit singles in the late 1980s and 1990s, including "Endless Summer Nights", "Right Here Waiting", "Now and Forever", and "Hazard"...

  • Rick Astley
    Rick Astley
    Richard Paul "Rick" Astley is an English singer-songwriter, musician, and radio personality. He is known for his 1987 song, "Never Gonna Give You Up", which was a #1 hit single in 25 countries...

  • Roy Orbison
    Roy Orbison
    Roy Kelton Orbison was an American singer-songwriter, well known for his distinctive, powerful voice, complex compositions, and dark emotional ballads. Orbison grew up in Texas and began singing in a rockabilly/country & western band in high school until he was signed by Sun Records in Memphis...

  • The Smiths
    The Smiths
    The Smiths were an English alternative rock band, formed in Manchester in 1982. Based on the song writing partnership of Morrissey and Johnny Marr , the band also included Andy Rourke and Mike Joyce...

  • Samantha Fox
    Samantha Fox
    Samantha Karen "Sam" Fox is an English dance-pop singer, actress, and former glamour model. In 1983, at the age of 16, she began her topless modeling career on Page Three of The Sun, and went on to become a popular pin-up girl...

  • Sandra
  • Skid Row (American band)
  • Slayer
    Slayer
    Slayer is an American thrash metal band formed in Huntington Park, California, in 1981 by guitarists Jeff Hanneman and Kerry King. Slayer rose to fame with their 1986 release, Reign in Blood, and is credited as one of the "Big Four" thrash metal acts, along with Metallica, Megadeth and...

  • Stevie Nicks
    Stevie Nicks
    Stephanie Lynn "Stevie" Nicks is an American singer-songwriter, best known for her work with Fleetwood Mac and an extensive solo career, which collectively have produced over forty Top 50 hits and sold over 140 million albums...

  • Stevie Wonder
    Stevie Wonder
    Stevland Hardaway Morris , better known by his stage name Stevie Wonder, is an American singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, record producer and activist...

  • Sting
  • Swing Out Sister
    Swing Out Sister
    Swing Out Sister are a British "sophisti-pop" group best known worldwide for their 1986 song "Breakout". Other hits include "Surrender", "Twilight World", "Waiting Game" and a remake of "Am I the Same Girl?" Though album sales in the U.S. and Europe have levelled off since the early 1990s, the...

  • Tina Turner
    Tina Turner
    Tina Turner is an American singer and actress whose career has spanned more than 50 years. She has won numerous awards and her achievements in the rock music genre have led many to call her the "Queen of Rock 'n' Roll".Turner started out her music career with husband Ike Turner as a member of the...

  • Tom Petty
    Tom Petty
    Thomas Earl "Tom" Petty is an American singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist. He is the frontman of Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers and was a founding member of the late 1980s supergroup Traveling Wilburys and Mudcrutch. He has also performed under the pseudonyms of Charlie T...

  • Toto
    Toto (band)
    Toto is an American rock band formed in Los Angeles in 1977. The group currently consists of Joseph Williams , David Paich , Steve Porcaro , Steve Lukather , Mike Porcaro , and Simon Phillips . Toto is known for a musical style that combines elements of pop, rock, soul, funk, progressive rock, hard...

  • Twisted Sister
    Twisted Sister
    Twisted Sister is an American heavy metal band from Long Island. Musically, the band implements elements of traditional heavy metal bands such as Iron Maiden and Judas Priest, along with a style that is similar to early glam metal bands...

  • Whitney Houston
    Whitney Houston
    Whitney Elizabeth Houston is an American singer, actress, producer and a former model. Houston is the most awarded female act of all time, according to Guinness World Records, and her list of awards include 1 Emmy Award, 6 Grammy Awards, 30 Billboard Music Awards, 22 American Music Awards, among...

  • Winger (band)
  • Thompson Twins
    Thompson Twins
    The Thompson Twins were a British pop group that were formed in April 1977 and disbanded in May 1993. They achieved considerable popularity in the mid 1980s, scoring a string of hits in the United Kingdom, the United States and around the globe. The band was named after the two bumbling detectives...

  • The Clash
    The Clash
    The Clash were an English punk rock band that formed in 1976 as part of the original wave of British punk. Along with punk, their music incorporated elements of reggae, ska, dub, funk, rap, dance, and rockabilly...

  • U2
    U2
    U2 are an Irish rock band from Dublin. Formed in 1976, the group consists of Bono , The Edge , Adam Clayton , and Larry Mullen, Jr. . U2's early sound was rooted in post-punk but eventually grew to incorporate influences from many genres of popular music...

  • Van Halen
    Van Halen
    Van Halen is an American hard rock band formed in Pasadena, California, in 1972. The band has enjoyed success since the release of its debut album, Van Halen, . As of 2007 Van Halen has sold 80 million albums worldwide and has had the most #1 hits on the Billboard Mainstream Rock chart...

  • W.A.S.P
  • White Lion
    White Lion
    White Lion is an American/Danish hard rock/heavy metal band that was formed in New York City in 1983 by Danish vocalist Mike Tramp and American guitarist Vito Bratta. Mainly active in the 1980s and early 1990s, the band achieved double platinum status with their #8 hit "Wait" and #3 hit "When the...

  • Whitesnake
    Whitesnake
    Whitesnake are an English rock band, founded in 1978 by David Coverdale after his departure from his previous band, Deep Purple. The band's early material has been compared by critics to Deep Purple, but by the mid 1980s they had moved to a more commercial hard rock style...

  • Yngwie Malmsteen


Sports figures



  • Boris Becker
    Boris Becker
    Boris Franz Becker is a former World No. 1 professional tennis player from Germany. He is a six-time Grand Slam singles champion, an Olympic gold medalist, and the youngest-ever winner of the men's singles title at Wimbledon at the age of 17...

  • Steffi Graf
    Steffi Graf
    Steffi Graf is a former World No. 1 German tennis player.In total, Graf won 22 Grand Slam singles titles, second among male and female players only to Margaret Court's 24...

  • Diego Armando Maradona
  • Roberto Duran
    Roberto Durán
    Roberto Durán Samaniego is a retired professional boxer from Panama, widely regarded as one of the greatest boxers of all time. A versatile brawler in the ring, he was nicknamed "Manos de Piedra" during his career....

  • Eric Heiden
    Eric Heiden
    Eric Arthur Heiden, M.D. is an American former long track speed skater and road cyclist who won all the men's speed skating races, and thus an unprecedented five individual gold medals, and set four Olympic records and one world record at the 1980 Winter Olympic Games in Lake Placid, New York,...

  • Carl Lewis
    Carl Lewis
    Frederick Carlton "Carl" Lewis is an American former track and field athlete, who won 10 Olympic medals including 9 gold, and 10 World Championships medals, of which 8 were gold. His career spanned from 1979 when he first achieved a world ranking to 1996 when he last won an Olympic title and...

  • Sergey Bubka
  • Greg LeMond
    Greg LeMond
    Gregory James LeMond is a former professional road bicycle racer from the United States and a three-time winner of the Tour de France. He was born in Lakewood, California and raised in Reno, Nevada....

  • Wayne Gretzky
    Wayne Gretzky
    Wayne Douglas Gretzky, CC is a Canadian former professional ice hockey player and former head coach. Nicknamed "The Great One", he is generally regarded as the best player in the history of the National Hockey League , and has been called "the greatest hockey player ever" by many sportswriters,...

  • Magic Johnson
    Magic Johnson
    Earvin "Magic" Johnson Jr. is a retired American professional basketball player who played point guard for the Los Angeles Lakers of the National Basketball Association . After winning championships in high school and college, Johnson was selected first overall in the 1979 NBA Draft by the Lakers...

  • Larry Bird
    Larry Bird
    Larry Joe Bird is a former American NBA basketball player and coach. Drafted into the NBA sixth overall by the Boston Celtics in 1978, Bird started at small forward and power forward for thirteen seasons, spearheading one of the NBA's most formidable frontcourts that included center Robert Parish...

  • Michael Jordan
    Michael Jordan
    Michael Jeffrey Jordan is a former American professional basketball player, active entrepreneur, and majority owner of the Charlotte Bobcats...

  • Sugar Ray Leonard
    Sugar Ray Leonard
    Sugar Ray Leonard is an American retired professional boxer and occasional actor. He was named Ray Charles Leonard, after his mother's favorite singer, Ray Charles...

  • Joe Montana
    Joe Montana
    Joseph Clifford "Joe" Montana, Jr. , nicknamed Joe Cool, Golden Joe, The Golden Great and Comeback Joe, is a retired American football player. Montana started his NFL career in 1979 with the San Francisco 49ers, where he played quarterback for the next 14 seasons...

  • Hulk Hogan
    Hulk Hogan
    Terrance Gene "Terry" Bollea , better known by his ring name Hulk Hogan, is an American Semi-retired professional wrestler, actor, television personality, and musician currently signed to Total Nonstop Action Wrestling ....

  • Andre The Giant
    André the Giant
    André René Roussimoff , best known as André the Giant, was a French professional wrestler and actor. His best remembered acting role was that of Fezzik, the giant in the film The Princess Bride...

  • Ric Flair
    Ric Flair
    Richard Morgan Fliehr is an American professional wrestler, better known by his ring name Ric Flair. Also known as "The Nature Boy", Flair is one of the most well-known professional wrestlers in the world....


  • Ian Botham
    Ian Botham
    Sir Ian Terence Botham OBE is a former England Test cricketer and Test team captain, and current cricket commentator. He was a genuine all-rounder with 14 centuries and 383 wickets in Test cricket, and remains well-known by his nickname "Beefy"...

  • Julio Cesar Chavez
    Julio César Chávez
    Julio César Chávez is a retired Mexican professional boxer.He is a six-time world champion in three weight divisions, and for several years he was considered the best pound-for-pound boxer in the world...

  • Jack Nicklaus
    Jack Nicklaus
    Jack William Nicklaus , nicknamed "The Golden Bear", is an American professional golfer. He won 18 career major championships on the PGA Tour over a span of 25 years and is widely regarded as one of the greatest professional golfers of all time. In addition to his 18 Majors, he was runner-up a...

  • Jimmy Connors
    Jimmy Connors
    James Scott "Jimmy" Connors is an American former world no. 1 tennis player....

  • Seve Ballesteros
  • Martina Navratilova
  • Sebastian Coe
  • Nikos Galis
  • Karl-Heinz Rummenigge
    Karl-Heinz Rummenigge
    Karl-Heinz "Kalle" Rummenigge is a German former football player.He had his greatest career success with German club Bayern Munich, where he won the Intercontinental Cup, the European Cup, as well as two league titles and two domestic cups.A member of the German national team, Rummenigge won the...

  • Michel Platini
    Michel Platini
    Michel François Platini is a former French football player, manager and current president of UEFA. Platini was a member of the French national team that won the 1984 European Championship, a tournament in which he was the top goalscorer and voted the best player. He participated in the 1978, 1982...

  • Gary Lineker
    Gary Lineker
    Gary Winston Lineker, OBE , is a former English footballer, who played as a striker. He is a sports broadcaster for the BBC, Al Jazeera Sports and Eredivisie Live...

  • Bo Jackson
    Bo Jackson
    Vincent Edward "Bo" Jackson is a former American baseball and football player. He was the first athlete to be named an All-Star in two major American sports, and also won the Heisman Trophy in 1985....


  • Marco van Basten
  • Franco Baresi
    Franco Baresi
    Franco Baresi is an Italian football youth team coach and former player. He played as a sweeper and spent his entire career with Serie A club AC Milan, acknowledged as one of the greatest defenders ever to play the game. Baresi was nicknamed "Piscinin", Milanese for "Little one"...

  • Ruud Gullit
    Ruud Gullit
    OON is a Dutch football manager and former football player, who played professionally in the 1980s and 1990s. He was the captain of the Netherlands national team that was victorious at Euro 88 and was also a member of the squad for the 1990 World Cup. He was named the European Footballer of the...

  • Zico
    Zico
    Arthur Antunes Coimbra , better known as Zico , is a Brazilian coach and former footballer. He is the current head coach of the Iraq national football team. Often called the "White Pelé", he is commonly considered one of the most skilled finishers and one of the best passers ever and possibly the...

  • Karch Kiraly
    Karch Kiraly
    Charles Frederick "Karch" Kiraly , is an American volleyball player who is the only person to have won Olympic gold medals in both the indoor and beach versions of the sport.-High school career:...

  • Ayrton Senna
    Ayrton Senna
    Ayrton Senna da Silva was a Brazilian racing driver. A three-time Formula One world champion, he is widely regarded as one of the greatest F1 drivers of all time...

  • Alain Prost
    Alain Prost
    Alain Marie Pascal Prost, OBE, Chevalier de la Légion d'honneur is a French racing driver. A four-time Formula One Drivers' Champion, Prost has won more titles than any driver except for Juan Manuel Fangio , and Michael Schumacher . From 1987 until 2001 Prost held the record for most Grand Prix...

  • Alberto Tomba
    Alberto Tomba
    Alberto Tomba is an Italian retired alpine ski racer. He was the dominant technical skier in the late 1980s and 1990s. Tomba won three Olympic gold medals, two World Championships, and nine World Cup season titles; four in slalom, four in giant slalom, and one overall title...

  • Mike Tyson
    Mike Tyson
    Michael Gerard "Mike" Tyson is a retired American boxer. Tyson is a former undisputed heavyweight champion of the world and holds the record as the youngest boxer to win the WBC, WBA and IBF world heavyweight titles, he was 20 years, 4 months and 22 days old...

  • Matt Biondi
    Matt Biondi
    Matthew Nicholas Biondi is a three-time U.S. Olympic swimmer in the 1984, 1988, and 1992 Summer Olympics, winning a total of 11 medals...

  • Greg Luganis
  • Freddie Spencer
    Freddie Spencer
    Freddie Spencer , known by the nickname Fast Freddie, is an American former World Champion motorcycle racer. Spencer is regarded as one of the greatest motorcycle racers of the early 1980s.-Biography:...

  • Eddie Lawson
    Eddie Lawson
    Eddie Lawson is a former four-time Grand Prix motorcycle racing World Champion. His penchant for not crashing & consistently finishing in the points earned him the nickname "Steady Eddie".-Biography:...

  • Vladimir Artemov
    Vladimir Artemov
    Vladimir Nikolaevich Artemov is a former Russian gymnast, Olympic champion and world champion who competed for the Soviet Union.He was born in Vladimir....

  • Imran Khan
    Imran Khan
    Imran Khan Niazi is a Pakistani politician and former Pakistani cricketer, playing international cricket for two decades in the late twentieth century. After retiring, he entered politics...

  • Wasim Akram
    Wasim Akram
    Wasim Akram is a former Pakistani left arm fast bowler and left-handed batsman in cricketer and model. who represented the Pakistan national cricket team in Test cricket and One Day International matches....

  • Waqar Younis
    Waqar Younis
    Waqar Younis Maitla is a former Pakistani right arm fast bowler in cricket and widely regarded as one of the greatest fast bowlers of all time...

  • Naas Botha


Film makers

  • Steven Spielberg
    Steven Spielberg
    Steven Allan Spielberg KBE is an American film director, screenwriter, producer, video game designer, and studio entrepreneur. In a career of more than four decades, Spielberg's films have covered many themes and genres. Spielberg's early science-fiction and adventure films were seen as an...

  • George Lucas
    George Lucas
    George Walton Lucas, Jr. is an American film producer, screenwriter, and director, and entrepreneur. He is the founder, chairman and chief executive of Lucasfilm. He is best known as the creator of the space opera franchise Star Wars and the archaeologist-adventurer character Indiana Jones...

  • Tim Burton
    Tim Burton
    Timothy William "Tim" Burton is an American film director, film producer, writer and artist. He is famous for dark, quirky-themed movies such as Beetlejuice, Edward Scissorhands, The Nightmare Before Christmas, Ed Wood, Sleepy Hollow, Corpse Bride and Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet...

  • James Cameron
    James Cameron
    James Francis Cameron is a Canadian-American film director, film producer, screenwriter, editor, environmentalist and inventor...

  • Stanley Kubrick
    Stanley Kubrick
    Stanley Kubrick was an American film director, writer, producer, and photographer who lived in England during most of the last four decades of his career...

  • Brian De Palma
    Brian De Palma
    Brian Russell De Palma is an American film director and writer. In a career spanning over 40 years, he is probably best known for his suspense and crime thriller films, including such box office successes as the horror film Carrie, Dressed to Kill, Scarface, The Untouchables, and Mission:...

  • Ridley Scott
    Ridley Scott
    Sir Ridley Scott is an English film director and producer. His most famous films include The Duellists , Alien , Blade Runner , Legend , Thelma & Louise , G. I...

  • John Hughes
  • David Cronenberg
    David Cronenberg
    David Paul Cronenberg, OC, FRSC is a Canadian filmmaker, screenwriter and actor. He is one of the principal originators of what is commonly known as the body horror or venereal horror genre. This style of filmmaking explores people's fears of bodily transformation and infection. In his films, the...

  • Wes Craven
    Wes Craven
    Wesley Earl "Wes" Craven is an American actor, film director, writer, producer, perhaps best known as the director of many horror films, particularly slasher films, including the famed A Nightmare on Elm Street and Wes Craven's New Nightmare, featuring the iconic Freddy Krueger character, the...

  • Oliver Stone
    Oliver Stone
    William Oliver Stone is an American film director, producer and screenwriter. Stone became well known in the late 1980s and the early 1990s for directing a series of films about the Vietnam War, for which he had previously participated as an infantry soldier. His work frequently focuses on...

  • John Carpenter
    John Carpenter
    John Howard Carpenter is an American film director, screenwriter, producer, editor, composer, and occasional actor. Although Carpenter has worked in numerous film genres in his four-decade career, his name is most commonly associated with horror and science fiction.- Early life :Carpenter was born...


See also

  • 1980s in music
    1980s in music
    For music from a year in the 1980s, go to 80 | 81 | 82 | 83 | 84 | 85 | 86 | 87 | 88 | 89For a history of music in all times, see Timeline of musical events....

  • 1980s in fashion
    1980s in fashion
    In the 1970s, the silhouette of fashion tended to be characterized by close fitting clothes on top with wider, looser clothes on the bottom. This trend completely reversed itself in the early 1980s as both men and women began to wear looser shirts and tight, close-fitting trousers.Men wore power...

  • 1980s in television
  • 1980s in video gaming
    1980s in video gaming
    The 1980s in video gaming were a decade of some notable events and releases such as the crash of 1983. The decade was dominated by both Nintendo and Sega and their consoles.- Third generation consoles :...

  • 1980s in literature
  • Andy McSmith. No Such Thing as Society: A History of Britain in the 1980s. Constable, 2010. ISBN 978-1-84901-009-2

Timeline


The following articles contain brief timelines which list the most prominent events of the decade:

1980 • 1981 • 1982 • 1983 • 1984 • 1985 • 1986 • 1987 • 1988 • 1989

External links