Visiting Scholar

Jennifer Smith | Jan. 7, 2013 | Kellogg Institute for International Studies Dame, IN -- Notre Dame’s undergraduate minor in Constitutional Studies and the Kellogg Institute for International Studies announce a lecture by Dr. John Agresto, who will address the question: “Is Promoting Democracy in the Middle East a Mistake?” The lecture will be held on Thursday, January 17, 2013 at 4:30 p.m. at the Hesburgh Center Auditorium on the campus of The University of Notre Dame.

John Agresto’s talk is based on his November 2012 article in Commentary magazine, “Was Promoting Democracy a Mistake?” and his 2007 Iraq memoir, Mugged by Reality: The Liberation of Iraq and the Failure of Good Intentions. After spending a better part of a decade in Iraq, Agresto brings forth an on-the-ground insider’s perspective on the successes and failures of promoting democracy in the Middle East. A question and answer session and a book signing will follow the lecture.  There may also be a brief response from a ND professor. This lecture is open to the public. For more information, please visit

For comments or an interview with John Agresto, please contact him at: 505-983-9625 or by e-mail at:

John Agresto is the Chair of the New Mexico State Advisory Committee to the US Commission on Civil Rights.  He is former Acting Chancellor, Provost and Dean of the Faculty at the American University of Iraq in Sulaimani and serves on its Board of Regents and Trustees, chairing its Academic Committee.  He previously served as the Senior Advisor for Higher Education and Scientific Research for the Coalition Provisional Authority. From 1989 to 2000, Agresto served as President of St. John’s College in Santa Fe. He has published in the areas of politics, law, and education, and has taught at the University of Toronto, Kenyon College, Duke University and the New School University. In 2002-03 he was Lily Senior Research Fellow at Wabash College and in the 1980s served as both administrative and policy head of the National Endowment for the Humanities. His book on the situation in Iraq, Mugged by Reality, was published by Encounter Books in 2007. He holds a Ph.D. from Cornell University.

Contact:   Jennifer Smith, Constitutional Studies Minor Administrative Assistant:      

 by Daily Domer Staff

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