Oil Money


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Table of Contents

1. Oil, US Empire, and the Middle East
2. The Road to the Oil Shock
3. Pursuing Petrodollar Interdependence
4. The Triangle to the Nile
5. The Petrodollar Economy
6. Visions of Petrodollar Promise and Peril
7. Reform and Revolt
8. Revolution and Invasions
9. Recoveries and Crises
10. End of an Era

About the Author

David M. Wight is Visiting Assistant Professor of History at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro.


Oil Money offers a rich, thorough and sophisticated description of how petrodollar interdependence has shaped and transformed modern international relations, global capitalism and U.S. hegemony, or as Wight prefers to call it, the American "cooperative empire." [I]t provides us with a fundamental introduction to one of the driving forces behind today's world and its many contradictions.
*The Washington Post*

Oil Money is a well-researched study that contributes significantly to our understanding of the role that the financial dynamics of oil played in shaping the projection of US power abroad.
*Enterprise & Society*

[One] strength of the work worth noting is the effort, especially in the second half of the book, to integrate a popular cultural analysis. By the end of Wight's narrative, we have the basic outlines of the world in which we still live. Wight has done a yeoman's work in explaining how the world came to be this way.
*Middle East Journal*

In rich and engaging detail, David M. Wight elaborates how US officials in the Nixon, Ford, Carter, and Reagan administrations scrambled to adapt to the end of their ability to impose low prices on compliant client states in the MENA region. In doing so, he taps "a wealth of new sources, particularly from declassified governmental records and popular Arab, Iranian, and US media" (p. 4).[T]he publication of Oil Money is timely. It helps us understand why the Biden administration is leading with military weapon provision to intervene in Russia's war with Ukraine.

Covering the 1970s and 1980s, Oil Money helps us understand the past that continues to haunt the present. In his accessible and well-researched account, Wight sheds light on the historical origins of the promise and peril of a relationship in which the United States, the oil-producing Arab countries, and Iran have all failed to bring about a positive transformation of the petrodollar economy.

[T]his book is well-researched and engaging. Among the main strengths of the book is also its emphasis on how the reality of the new petrodollar-based US "empire" was represented, debated, and constructed in the public sphere, both in the US and in the MENA.
*Society for U.S. Intellectual History*

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