Letter from America: the Reagan years (1981-1988)

Letter from America: the Reagan years (1981-1988)

Ronald Reagan’s presidency, from Reagonomics and the invasion of Grenada in his first term, to the Iran-contra scandal and reconciliation with Soviet leader Mihail Gorbachev in his second in his second. A fascinating social, cultural and political history of American life, through the words of British-American journalist and broadcaster, Alistair Cooke (1908 – 2004).

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Recent episodes (10)

  • LFA: Yasser Arafat's speech at the UN, 1988

    Fri, 2 Dec 88

    Duration:
    15 mins

    Yasser Arafat's speech at the UN, the denial of his visa by US secretary of state George Schultz, and the view that Palestinians are moving towards reconciliation with Israel.

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  • LFA: The 1988 presidential election

    Fri, 11 Nov 88

    Duration:
    14 mins

    An overview of the ballot paper in the 1988 presidential elections, George Bush's "inevitable" victory, and the issues that proved most important for voting Americans.

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  • LFA: George H W Bush vs Michael Dukakis

    Fri, 4 Nov 88

    Duration:
    28 mins

    A review of George H W Bush and Michael Dukakis' presidential campaigns, key values and demographics, and predicted performances before the 1988 elections.

    Download 13MB (right click & "save target as / link as")

  • LFA: The Bess Myerson trial begins

    Fri, 28 Oct 88

    Duration:
    15 mins

    The 1988 trial of Bess Myerson, the former Miss America and head of consumer affairs to New York City, accused of tax fraud and bribing a judge.

    Download 7MB (right click & "save target as / link as")

  • LFA: Baseball and politics in 1988

    Fri, 21 Oct 88

    Duration:
    14 mins

    With the 1988 presidential race and World Series drawing to a close, Alistair Cooke looks at the baseball metaphors used by George H W Bush and Michael Dukakis in their campaigns.

    Download 7MB (right click & "save target as / link as")

  • LFA: 1988 televised debates, and Thatcher in 1979

    Fri, 7 Oct 88

    Duration:
    14 mins

    The polished nature of the Bush vs Dukakis debates, the 'American-style' of Margaret Thatcher's public relations in 1979, and Jimmy Carter's negative review of the 1988 campaign.

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  • LFA: Hurricane Gilbert

    Fri, 23 Sep 88

    Duration:
    14 mins

    The impact of Hurricane Gilbert on Jamaica and Central America, and the 1938 hurricane that destroyed a large part of the forests of New England, as discussed by Alistair Cooke.

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  • LFA: The Democratic outsider

    Fri, 16 Sep 88

    Duration:
    14 mins

    Jimmy Carter's rise to prominence of in 1976, and Michael Dukakis' struggle to establish a new and attractive identity for himself ahead of the 1988 presidential election.

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  • LFA: The heat wave continues, summer 1988

    Fri, 2 Sep 88

    Duration:
    14 mins

    Land in the Midwest is damaged by hot weather and forest fires. Sixty major fires still rage across the US while the hot temperatures are causing the greenhouse effect.

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  • LFA: Dan Quayle for vice president

    Fri, 26 Aug 88

    Duration:
    28 mins

    Alistair Cooke reflects on why George H W Bush may have chosen Dan Quayle as vice-presidential candidate, and the constitutional powers of the vice president's role.

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