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Portal:1980s

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The 1980s Portal

The 1980s (pronounced "nineteen-eighties", shortened to "the 80s" or "the Eighties") was a decade that began 1 January 1980 and ended 31 December 1989.

The decade, known as the Excellence Eighties and the Moderation Decade, saw a dominance of conservatism and free market economics, and a socioeconomic change due to advances in technology and a worldwide move away from planned economies and towards laissez-faire capitalism compared to the 1970s.

As economic deconstruction increased in the developed world, multiple multinational corporations associated with the manufacturing industry relocated into Thailand, Mexico, South Korea, Taiwan, and China. Japan and West Germany saw large economic growth during this decade. The AIDS epidemic became recognized in the 1980s and has since killed an estimated 39 million people (). Global warming became well known to the scientific and political community in the 1980s.

The United Kingdom and the United States moved closer to supply-side economic policies beginning a trend towards global instability of international trade that would pick up more steam in the following decade as the fall of the USSR made right-wing economic policy more powerful.

The final decade of the Cold War opened with the US-Soviet confrontation continuing largely without any interruption. Superpower tensions escalated rapidly as President Reagan scrapped the policy of détente and adopted a new, much more aggressive stance on the Soviet Union. The world came perilously close to nuclear war for the first time since the Cuban Missile Crisis in 1962, but the second half of the decade saw a dramatic easing of superpower tensions and ultimately the total collapse of Soviet communism.

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 (IMF) and the World Bank. Ethiopia witnessed widespread famine in the mid-1980s during the corrupt rule of Mengistu Haile Mariam, 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 Live Aid concert in 1985.

Major civil discontent and violence occurred, including the Iran–Iraq War, the Soviet–Afghan War, the 1982 Lebanon War, the First Nagorno-Karabakh War, the Bombing of Libya in 1986, and the First Intifada in the Gaza Strip and the West Bank. Islamism became a powerful political force in the 1980s and many terrorist organizations, including Al Qaeda, started.

By 1986, nationalism was making a comeback in the Eastern Bloc and desire for democracy in communist-led socialist states combined with economic recession resulted in Mikhail Gorbachev's glasnost and perestroika, which reduced Communist Party power, legalized dissent and sanctioned limited forms of capitalism such as joint ventures with Western firms. After newly heated tension for most of the decade, by 1988 relations between the West and East had improved significantly and the Soviet Union was increasingly unwilling to defend its governments in satellite states.

1989 brought the overthrow and attempted overthrow of a number of governments led by communist parties, such as in Hungary, the Tiananmen Square protests of 1989 in China, the Czechoslovak "Velvet Revolution", Erich Honecker's East German regime, Poland's Soviet-backed government, and the violent overthrow of the Nicolae Ceaușescu regime in Romania. Destruction of the 155-km Berlin Wall, at the end of the decade, signaled a seismic geopolitical shift. The Cold War ended in the early 1990s with the successful Reunification of Germany and the USSR's demise after the August Coup of 1991.

The 1980s saw great advances in genetic and digital technology. After years of animal experimentation since 1985 the first genetic modification of 10 adult human beings took place in May 1989, a gene tagging experiment which led to the first true gene therapy implementation in September 1990. The first "designer babies", a pair of female twins were created in a laboratory in late 1989 and born in July 1990 after being sex-selected via the controversial assisted reproductive technology procedure preimplantation genetic diagnosis. Gestational surrogacy was first performed in 1985 with the first birth in 1986, making it possible for a woman to become a biological mother without experiencing pregnancy for the first time in history.

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

The 1980s saw the advent of the ongoing practice of sex-selective abortion in China and India as ultrasound technology permitted parents to selectively abort baby girls.

The global internet took shape in academia by the second half of the 1980s as well as many other computer networks of both academic and commercial use such as USENET, Fidonet and the Bulletin Board System. By 1989 the Internet and the networks linked to it were a global system with extensive transoceanic satellite links and nodes in most rich countries. Based on earlier work from 1980 onwards Tim Berners Lee formalized the concept of the World Wide Web by 1989 and performed its earliest demonstrations in December 1990 and 1991. Television viewing became commonplace in the Third World, with the number of TV sets in China and India increasing by 15 and 10 times respectively.

Video game consoles released in this decade included the continuing popularity of Atari 2600, Intellivision, Vectrex, Colecovision, SG-1000, NES/Famicom, Sega Master System, PC Engine/TurboGrafx-16, Mega Drive/Genesis and Game Boy. Super Mario Bros. and Tetris were the decade's two best selling and most popular video games. 1980's Atari VCS port of Space Invaders was the first killer app. Pac-Man was the decade's highest grossing arcade game. Home computers in that decade include the Commodore 64, VIC-20, the Apple II series, the Atari 8-bit family, Atari ST, Amiga, ZX Spectrum and MSX. Apple Macintosh, Microsoft Windows and IBM PC compatible were also introduced in that decade and helped popularize personal computers. (Full article...)

The decade was great socioeconomic change due to advances in technology and a worldwide move away from planned economies and towards laissez-faire capitalism.

The 1980s was 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 Asian countries during this decade, with rates of natural increase close to or exceeding 4% annually.

The AIDS epidemic became recognized in the 1980s and has since killed an estimated 39 million people (as of 2013).[1] Global warming became well known to the scientific and political community in the 1980s.

The 1980s saw great advances in genetic and digital technology. After years of animal experimentation since 1985 the first genetic modification of 10 adult human beings took place in May 1989, a gene tagging experiment[2] which led to the first true gene therapy implementation in September 1990. The first "designer babies", a pair of female twins were created in a laboratory in late 1989 and born in July 1990 after being sex-selected via the controversial assisted reproductive technology procedure preimplantation genetic diagnosis.[3] Gestational surrogacy was first performed in 1985 with the first birth in 1986, making it possible for a woman to become a biological mother without experiencing pregnancy for the first time in history.[4]

The global Internet took shape in academia by the second half of the 1980s as well as many other computer networks of both academic and commercial use such as USENET, Fidonet and the Bulletin Board System. By 1989 the Internet and the networks linked to it were a global system with extensive transoceanic satellite links and nodes in most rich countries.[5] Based on earlier work from 1980 onwards Tim Berners Lee formalized the concept of the World Wide Web by 1989 and performed its earliest demonstrations in December 1990 and 1991. Television viewing became commonplace in the Third World, with the number of TV sets in China and India increasing by 15 and 10 times respectively.[6]

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Glasnost (/ˈɡlæznɒst/; Russian: гла́сность, IPA: [ˈɡlasnəsʲtʲ] (listen)) has several general and specific meanings – a policy of maximum openness in the activities of state institutions and freedom of information, the inadmissibility of hushing up problems, and so on. It has been used in Russian to mean "openness and transparency" since at least the end of the 18th century.

In the Russian Empire of the late-19th century, the term was particularly associated with reforms of the judicial system. Among these were reforms permitting attendance of the press and the public at trials whose verdicts were now to be read aloud. Vladimir Lenin repeatedly emphasized the importance of glasnost as the most important feature of democracy. In the mid-1980s, it was popularised by Mikhail Gorbachev as a political slogan for increased government transparency in the Soviet Union. (Full article...)
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  • ... that Derek Jeter discusses his biracial upbringing and experiencing racism in Michigan in the 1980s and 1990s in The Captain?
  • ... that in the 1980s, international LGBT organizations organized protests in Europe and the Americas in support of Belgian teacher Eliane Morissens?
  • ... that in the 1980s, textile conservator Martand Singh organized a series of exhibitions to rekindle interest in the weaving and dyeing traditions of India?
  • ... that English musician Jane Weaver's album Flock was inspired by Lebanese torch songs, 1980s Russian Aerobics records, and Australian punk music?
  • ... that the educational computer games Designasaurus and UMS 1 together gained their publisher more than $5 million during 18 months in the 1980s?
  • ... that Leonard Bernstein rediscovered his setting of Psalm 148 for voice and piano, dated 1935, in the mid-1980s, and it was first performed in 1993?

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Soul Train publicity photo.
Credit: Friends and Associated of Soul Train
Soul Train publicity photo.

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Becker in 2019
Becker in 2019

Boris Franz Becker (German pronunciation: [ˈboːʁɪs ˈbɛkɐ], audio; born 22 November 1967) is a German former world No. 1 tennis player. Becker was successful from the start of his career, winning the Wimbledon Championships at the age of 17. He ultimately won six Grand Slam singles titles: three Wimbledon Championships, two Australian Opens and one US Open. Becker also won three year-end championships, 13 Masters titles and an Olympic gold medal in doubles. In 1989, he was voted the Player of the Year by both the ATP and the ITF.

At times Becker struggled with his early success and fame, and his personal life has been turbulent. Since his playing career ended, he has engaged in numerous ventures, including coaching Novak Djokovic for three years, playing poker professionally and working for an online poker company. In April 2022, he was sentenced to two and a half years in prison on charges of hiding assets, related to his 2017 bankruptcy. He is incarcerated at HM Prison Huntercombe, indicating that he will be deported from the UK at the end of his sentence. (Full article...)
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The following are images from various 1980s-related articles on Wikipedia.

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More did you know...

... that Prince's "When Doves Cry" was the top-selling single of 1984?

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Sources

  1. ^ "Global HIV/AIDS Overview". aids.gov. Retrieved 16 April 2016.
  2. ^ "Recent advances in pediatrics-17". Jaypee Brothers Publishers. ISBN 978-81-8448-103-7. Retrieved 16 April 2016.
  3. ^ "Genetic Defect Screened Out; Healthy Twins Born". latimes. Retrieved 16 April 2016.
  4. ^ "And Baby Makes Four: for the First Time a Surrogate Bears a Child Genetically Not Her Own". people.com. Retrieved 16 April 2016.
  5. ^ Ian Brown (2013). Research Handbook on Governance of the Internet. Edward Elgar Publishing. p. 7. ISBN 978-1-84980-504-9.
  6. ^ Singhal, Arvind; Doshi, J.K.; Rogers, Everett M.; Rahman, S. Adnan. "The Diffusion of Television in India" (PDF). Media Asia. 15 (4): 222–229. Retrieved 2015-04-18.
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