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As we approach twenty years since the end of the 1980s, we have the opportunity to see the decade in perspective, and are in a position to question the glib assumption that the 1980s were a mere conservative foil to the 1960s. The 1980s: A Critical and Transitional Decade, edited by Kimberly R. Moffitt and Duncan A. Campbell, places its topics within the context of a decade described as both critical and transitional because the 1980s, in many respects, marked the end of one era and the beginning of another. For example, the Reagan presidency, the end of the Cold War, MTV, and the appearance of the personal computer all reflect a legacy of political, cultural, and social transformation of the United States and the world, and took place specifically within the 1980s. The function of this interdisciplinary volume is not to simply highlight the significant phenomena of the period, but rather demonstrate how so many apparently disparate events were, in fact, closely inter-related and also products of their age. The 1980s is a holistic analysis of the decade that focuses on major turning points, developments in literature, art, entertainment, politics, and social experimentation. The 1980s: A Critical and Transitional Decade, edited by Kimberly R. Moffitt and Duncan A. Campbell is a groundbreaking and stand-alone introductory volume that is unapologetically interdisciplinary in nature and encourages students to explore topics of the decade often overlooked or grouped together with other, more memorable decades such as the 1920s or 1960s.

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