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1980 1981 1982 1983 1984 1985 1986 1987 1988 1989


Events and trends

The 1980s marked an abrupt shift towards more conservative lifestyles after the momentous cultural revolutions which took place in the 1960s and 1970s and the definition of the AIDS virus in 1981. It was also an era of political and economic decentralisation, especially in countries with mixed and command economies, since decades of active government intervention left a legacy of soaring inflation and rising unemployment. Coined the "me decade," this decade has been somewhat derided since its closing for its perceived "greed" among Yuppies, certain clothes/music/hairstyles which seem outlandish by modern standards, overall high crime rates in many countries, and of course the onset of the AIDS virus in the early part of the decade. Political events and trends of the 1980s culminated in the toppling of military governments and authoritarian regimes, including every communist member of the Warsaw Pact, bringing to close the decades-long Cold War. The 1980s also saw very rapid developments in numerous sectors of technology which have defined the modern consumer world, particularly electronics like Personal Computers and gaming systems.

The population of the world increased dramatically in the 1980s, adding nearly one billion new people in the course of the decade.




War, peace and politics





World Leaders


Sports figures


The original theatrical poster for Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi
The original theatrical poster for Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi


See Also: 1980s in television


Musical genres popular during the 1980s include hip hop, old school rap, heavy metal music, twee pop, hair metal, New Wave music, New Romantic, shoegazing, jangle pop, hardcore punk, alternative rock, dream pop, techno, house, acid house, and two-tone. In the United States, country music also remained popular with hits from the likes of Kenny Rogers, Ricky Skaggs, George Strait and Randy Travis. 1989 saw Garth Brooks break onto the scene.

See also: 1980s music groups, List of rock and roll albums in the 1980s

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