Determining the specificities of everyday political life in one of the 20th century's most notorious dictatorships – Iraq under Saddam Hussein – is possible as a result of the availability of more than ten million internal security force and Ba`th party documents recovered after the overthrow of the Iraqi regime in 2003. The documents associated with this collection, which is currently housed at Stanford's University's Hoover Institution, provide a rich picture of the everyday practices of Iraq's highly repressive autocracy. Using data from these captured documents, I provide empirical evidence about the political practices of citizens living under highly difficult political circumstances.
Lisa Blaydes is an Associate Professor of Political Science and a faculty affiliate of the Abbasi Program in Islamic Studies at Stanford University. She is the author of Elections and Distributive Politics in Mubarak’s Egypt(Cambridge University Press, 2011). Her articles have appeared in the American Political Science Review,International Studies Quarterly, International Organization, Journal of Theoretical Politics, Middle East Journal, and World Politics. She holds degrees in Political Science (PhD) from the University of California, Los Angeles and International Relations (BA, MA) from Johns Hopkins University.