Iraq’s Oil cultures before the Revolution by Dr Nelida Fuccaro

Dr Fuccaro is a Reader in Modern History of the Middle East at SOAS and is interested in interdisciplinary and cross-regional approaches to the study of the region.

During her presentation and discussion of Iraq and its oil industry, Dr Fuccaro posed the question of whether the discovery of oil was a blessing or a curse and then followed through with information that provided answers to that question. She covered the monarchical era and talked about oil life and culture of the 1940s and 50s, demonstrating how oil became a ‘monster of wealth’ generating social inequality, as well as being ‘magical’, providing a better future for some of the population in Kirkuk and the surrounding region.