Texas Tech University

Was Promoting Democracy a Mistake?

Dr. John Agresto

Former Senior Adviser to the Iraqi Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research. Founding member of the board of Trustees, Provost, Acting Chancellor, and Dean of the Faculty at the American University of Iraq.

Dr. Agresto, author of Mugged by Reality: The Liberation of Iraq and the Failure of Good Intentions, discussed liberalism, the Arab Spring, and the misconceptions of neoconservative policy makers. After spending the better part of a decade in Iraq, Dr. Agresto brought an insider's perspective on the successes and failures of promoting democracy in the Middle East.

From 1989 to 2000, Agresto served as President of St. John's College in Santa Fe. In 2002–03 he was Lily Senior Research Fellow at Wabash College. Between August 2003 and June 2004 he served as a Coalition Provisional Authority Senior Advisor to the Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research in Baghdad, Iraq. He then worked full-time with The American University of Iraq – Sulaimani as its Interim Provost and Chancellor, an experience he drew on to write Mugged By Reality (2007). In 2008–2009 he was a visiting fellow at Princeton University's James Madison Program.

Dr. Agresto received an A.B. from Boston College and a Ph.D. in Government from Cornell University.

Dr. Agresto's lecture was held in the auditorium of the International Cultural Center at Texas Tech University in Lubbock, TX, April 23, 2013. 

This event was organized by the TTU Office of International Affairs and cosponsored by the CH Foundation and the Institute for the Study of Western Civilization.

The Institute for the Study of Western Civilization