Cafe Conversations Madonna & Reagan

OU Prof To Discuss Madonna, Reagan In Upcoming “Café Conversations”

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Pop singer Madonna and U.S. President Ronald Reagan have next to nothing in common it seems, except for one thing — their influence on the 1980s.

Ohio University Associate Professor of History Chester Pach will discuss how these two historical figures defined this time period at 5 p.m. on Wednesday, Feb. 11 In the Baker University Center Front Room.

Pach teaches courses in U.S. foreign relations and recent U.S. history.

“They’re obviously very different individuals. There’s no evidence that they ever met or had any interaction, but in many ways they represent important parts of the ‘80s. The way I’m going to bring them together, is Reagan and Madonna were effective in communicating because of how they presented their views through use of images and words,” said Pach.

Many of Reagan’s policies and ideas were popular because he advocated restoring traditional values and reviving U.S. power. He was president for most of the decade and he represented the growth of conservative views.

In contrast, music icon Madonna addressed feminist issues, although in controversial ways, and sometimes turned gender stereotypes inside out. Madonna was popular because of her image and her music videos. Together she and Reagan helped define the 1980s.

Café Conversations are a venue for students to informally share their interests during a conversational exchange with faculty, staff and the community in a friendly setting. Free coffee will be offered to the first 50 attendees and participants who ask questions will win a free T-shirt.

The program is supported by the Ohio University Office of the Vice President for Research and Creative Activity.

For a full schedule of 2014-15 speakers, visit: