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IraqA Political History$
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Adeed Dawisha

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780691157931

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: October 2017

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691157931.001.0001

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Framing Democracy with a Certain Indifference, 1921–1936

Framing Democracy with a Certain Indifference, 1921–1936

Chapter:
(p.40) Chapter Three Framing Democracy with a Certain Indifference, 1921–1936
Source:
Iraq
Author(s):

Adeed Dawisha

Publisher:
Princeton University Press
DOI:10.23943/princeton/9780691157931.003.0003

This chapter analyzes the democracy and the process of democratization in Iraq. Robert Dahl has identified eight minimal conditions for a functioning democracy: freedom to form and join organizations, freedom of expression, the right to vote, eligibility for public office, the right of political leaders to compete for support and votes, availability of alternative sources of information, free and fair elections, and institutions for making government policies depend on votes and other expressions of preference. However, these “minimal” conditions are only for mature democracies that tend to reside mainly in the Northern Hemisphere. If these “minimal” conditions were to be applied to the developing world, the analyst would be hard put to identify a single democracy, with the possible exception of India. This dilemma is certainly true in the case of Iraq. When set against the rigorous standards of mature Western democracies, monarchical Iraq fell short, indeed way short, of the Western democratic ideal.

Keywords:   democracy, democratization, Iraq, Robert Dahl

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