The America of the 1980s is often caricatured as a time of yuppie greed and self-absorption. But what was driving that decades rampant pursuit of individual pleasure? What were the cultural forces behind Madonna’s 'Material Girl' and Oliver Stone’s Wall Street? These essays, collected by historian Gilbert T. Sewall from the major books, journals, news reports, and public addresses of the day, survey the tumultuous social change that engulfed the nation - and explain why we are still feeling the aftershocks today. With contributions by such diverse figures as Chistopher Lasch, Lewis H. Lapham, Eric Bogosian, and Hilton Kramer, The Eighties touches on the hallmarks of the age - celebrity culture and hype, exhibitionism and shamelessness, academic ferment, and the lure of money. Kennedy Fraser on the new trend machine. 'The Eighties' sheds new light on the decade that brought us Ronald Reagan and MTV, a decade that continues to frame some of today’s most vexing political, economic, and cultural debates.