Date: March 30, 2006
Creator: Sahliyeh, Emile F.
Description: This University Scholars Day keynote speech addresses the issue of democratization in the Middle East. Professor Sahliyeh discusses major reasons for the lack of democratization to date; namely, expansion of powers of the state due to (1) lack of development of the bourgeoisie and a private sector economy, (2) the development of an extensive military infrastructure, (3) the influence of oil wealth, (4) the patriarchal and authoritarian political culture, (5) the role of Islam, (6) the lack of civil society institutions, and (7) the influence of external political powers. In this context, he examines the impact of the attacks on the United States on September 11, 2001, and discusses feasible possibilities for increasing democracy in the Middle East, including (1) increasing powers of the parliaments, (2) giving the judiciary branch more independence, (3) increasing civil society institutions, and (4) increasing individual freedoms in the liberal democratic tradition.
Contributing Partner: UNT Honors College