MESA Bulletin 26(2), December 1992
Research Resources Going On-Line: The Middle East on Internet It isn't a foreign language.
USENET, LISTSERV, OPAC, TELNET and FTP are services on a worldwide electronic network called "Internet" that links computer systems at universities, re- search institutes, organizations, government agencies and some companies. The number of linked systems, or sites, passed 750,000 in mid-1992 from just a few thousand as recently as five years ago. Internet services are used by increasing numbers of people to communicate increasingly diverse information.
From the computer technologists and programmers who established them, their use has spread through physical and biomedical sciences to social scientists and increasingly to others who use electronic networks. As more users, and more classes of users, find their way "on-line," so do interests in and information about the Middle East from exchanges of news and views about events in Middle Eastern countries to the full text of the Quran, databases of Hadith, lectures, sermons, poetry, short stories and fledgling newsletters. Non-commercial and increasingly public, Internet is a spawn of the computing services at universities and other organizations, government agencies and technology corporations.
Enthusiasts tend to regard Internet as the most important advance in communications since printing, writing, even speaking. Others may find it at first as inscrutable as scripture to the non-literate. But as access to Internet- connected systems has grown, so has the range of users and the interests that bring them together on Internet services.
Parts or all of three of these services are now available through Internet connections:
* USENET is a sort of electronic open forum for posting news and discussions on over 1200 topics, among them a half dozen or so on Middle Eastern countries and religions.
* LISTSERV is a more managed system of mailing lists for work- ing groups and, increasingly, on-line "electronic" journals and newsletters.
* TELNET and FTP connect to distant computing systems that contain information from On-Line Public Access Catalogues (OPACs) of libraries to government data to the positions of satellites to the full text of the Quran and databases of Hadith.
USENET, Broadcasting in narrow bands
Many Internet-connected systems have software such as news, rn, nn and others that connect to USENET, which gives access to discussions and news-sharing groups devoted to special topics called "newsgroups." Most are about computer technology, programming and the network services in other words, shop talk but others have been established on topics from recreation to academic disciplines to special group interests. USENET is organized in a hierarchy of divisions and topics. Discussions of academic disciplines are in a division called sci, social issues in a division called soc and debate- oriented topics in talk. Boundaries are loose, and enthusiasts often post messages across several newsgroups. Most of this is ephemera, in the librarians' sense of the term. It records the quick, worldwide response of a somewhat narrow public to particular events, moments and topics more or less as they occur. MESA members might find this interesting in much the same terms: making contacts, following discussions and, at moments of crisis, the postings from special interest and regional news services. Several active newsgroups focus on Middle Eastern countries, religions, Arab and Turkish issues, as well as on many more European and Asian countries. In USENET nomenclature, these are in soc divisions for culture and religion, among others. In the culture division are newsgroups for afghanistan, pakistan, turkey, lebanon, iranian, arabic and jewish, among a host of others. After the fall of the former regime to Mujahidin, soc.culture.afghanistan had an explosion of postings, including transcripts from Radio Kabul broadcasts, news releases, speculation and energetic debate about the shape of the new Afghan society. soc.culture.turkey has carried long-running exchanges between Armenian and Turkish partisans, including releases from the Turan News Agency, from Crescent International (described as a magazine of Islamic World News), from the International Muslim Student Union and something called Peace Media Service posted by participants. Some of the same releases, and participants, appear in soc.re- ligion.islam, which also includes debate about democracy in the Arab world, parts of which are duplicated in soc.culture.arabic and in talk.politics.mideast. soc.culture.paki- stan is a loquacious arena for poetry, religious debate and political arguments, often between Pakistanis and Indians. soc.culture.iranian in mid-1992 was carrying short stories, poetry, some political discussion and less religious debate including late lectures by Ali Shariati and sermons. These interchanges are conducted largely in English, partly because of limitations in computer network technology, and partly because English is the lingua franca of the computer literate. But soc.culture.turkey carries some postings in Turkish (stripped of diacritics), and participants in others post messages occasionally in informally transliterated Urdu, Farsi, Pakhtu and Arabic. The participants are, first, people with access to Internet-connected systems with USENET connections. At one time, they would have been mostly computer scientists and technologists, and the vast majority of newsgroups focus on technological topics. The users expanded first to engineering and science laboratories, and impressionistically most correspondents on USENET appear to be in those fields. As more connections are added and more people outside the technology and lab sciences world get access to networked computing systems, the social-demographic slice changes, but is still confined largely to professional and academic people with academic, corporate and organizational affiliations. The reach, however, is increasingly international. Although the vast majority of correspondence originates in North America, there is much traffic from Australia, the UK, Germany, France and Israel. I posted a query in soc.cul- ture.arabic and received a reply from Belgium. There are connections in Turkey, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Tunisia and reportedly pending for Pakistan.
Not all computing systems receive USENET or include all of the available newsgroups. But many college and university computing services are open to faculty, staff and students on the same basis as libraries, and often as casually. When I taught one Summer at a German university, getting access to EARN, the European branch of Internet, was a matter of finding the right office at the computing center. From that point, I was in contact with my office, home and Internet-using colleagues and recent students. Little of the interchange in the newsgroups mentioned above is academic. Most of it is energetic debate in what USENET implicitly classifies as avocational divisions of talk, recreation and social issues. One drawback in these groups is the relentless dedication of some correspondents to controversy. An average day in some of these newsgroups can bring scores of messages, replies, replies with quotations, replies to replies and comments on them running well past the time my university's computing system retains USENET postings.
LISTSERV, Subscriptions on-line
More ordered traffic is managed by LISTSERV on many academic and research systems. LISTSERV is a program that uses electronic mail to receive and forward messages to a list of subscribers. Some academic and professional associations and a few "electronic" journals use LISTSERV for store-and-forward services that will either send or notify subscribers to retrieve postings on them. Subscription requires some cryptic commands; LISTSERV is more "computery" than USENET, and its uses are rather more like work-sharing in technical interest groups than the freewheeling discussion groups on USENET. I subscribe to one for the Society for the Anthropology of Work of the American Anthropological Association, for instance, and from another receive the table of contents and other front matter of an experimental on-line journal, whose articles and reviews can be ordered and received through electronic mail. In effect LISTSERV and USENET are incremental steps beyond electronic mail on Internet with different formats. USENET messages and comments are posted for all to read (and respond to); much of the traffic consists of long-running debates that can be quite repetitive, but I've found sermons, lectures and extracts from specialized news agencies that have also been inserted (although their copyright status is ambiguous). LISTSERV is more rooted in the computing services world; it requires moderators to establish and maintain lists and more familiarity with computing services to join a list. USENET is not available on all Internet-connected systems; but all that provide electronic mail over Internet can receive LISTSERV communications. There is another overlap. Messages on some USENET news- groups devoted to the Middle East in soc.religion and soc.culture come from or find their way to a mailing list on LISTSERV called Muslim News Network, which is described as "a subsidiary of Pakistan News Service." It sends a newsletter (vol. 1, 1992) compiled from submissions and e-mailed to subscribers. Contents include passages from the Quran, religious lessons and answers to queries, matrimonials, and news releases. You subscribe by sending a one-line e-mail message, SUB MUSLIMS, followed by your first name and last name, to LISTSERV@PSUVM.BITNET. Some others that may be interesting for researchers and teachers in areas of Middle East studies and their Bitnet addresses (out of 2600 listed on my university's computing system) include: AFRICA-L@BRUFPB Forum Pan-Africa BIO-DOST@TREARN Biyolojik Bilimlerde Calisan Turk Bilim BURC@TREARN Bogazici University Graduates CURRENTS@PCCVM S.E. Asian News and Culture Electronic DOST@TREARN Turkish Scientists' Discussion Group ETHMUS-L@UMDD EthnoFORUM, global ethnomusicology forum. FOLKLORE@TAMVM1 Folklore Discussion List HUMANIST@BROWNVM Humanist: Humanities Computing HUMBUL@UKACRL HUMBUL INDIA-L@UTARLVM1 The India News Network INDIANWS@PCCVM The India List (NeWS) INTERCUL@RPICICGE Cross-cultural communication IVRITEX@TAUNIVM Hebrew TeX list JUDAICA@TAUNIVM (Peered) Judaic Studies Newsletter LORE@NDSUVM1 LORE - Folklore List MACTURK@TREARN Turkish Macintosh Users Group MIAST-L@UIUCVMD Maghrebian Scientific Institute PC-FORUM@TAUNIVM Tel Aviv University PC Forum POLI-SCI@RUTVM1 Political Science Digest TEL@USCVM The Turkish Electronic Mail List TSAA-L@PURCCVM Turkish Students Assistance Association TSCCOM-L@UIUCVMD Tunisian Scientific Coordination Committee TUNISNET@PSUVM The Tunisia Network YUNUS@TRMETU (Peered) Turkish TeX Users Group YUNUS Sending electronic mail queries to these addresses should elicit responses about material available through them and instructions for joining. Inherent in both USENET and LISTSERV are three broad possi- bilities for Middle East studies. The first is the worldwide, if institutionally limited, reach of Internet for communicating with colleagues. This is the use that computer folks pioneered. Second are opportunities to watch this interchange happen, as in long-running exchanges over Armenian-Turkish issues and, now, Azerbaijan in soc.cul- ture.turkey or debates about democracy in soc.culture.arabic and in soc.religion.islam or religious discussions on these and in soc.culture.iranian and soc.culture.pakistan. While this traffic echoes exchanges in other media, what is interesting is the migration of such exchanges to this one and to the people who use it (in the first instance, presumably, for something else). This is not the low tech world of newspapers and tape cassettes, and there are some formidable entry requirements that give it interesting social characteristics. A third possibility might be for some MESA member(s) to establish a USENET group or LISTSERV list for Middle East studies. Some newsgroups in the disciplines (sci) group on USENET were established by students and read like running seminars.
TELNET & FTP, Remote connections
Internet also provides connection to distant computers with On-Line Public Access Catalogues (OPACs) of libraries and other databases from lists of programs and awards of the National Science Foundation, to special databases of astronom- ical and medical information, to the full text of the Quran and databases of Hadith. These services are provided through TELNET remote login and FTP file transfer services. The first use most academics are likely to make of TELNET is to search on-line card catalogues of other universities' libraries and of regional systems such as melvyl, the union catalogue of University of California libraries. One of these, the Colorado Alliance of Research Libraries (carl) provides access to libraries in the Boston and the Bay areas and to a group of universities across the US, although not all their services will be available to remote users. Remote access is usually blocked to commercial databases, such as the periodicals indexes of the Wilson company, for licensing reasons; but carl includes a database of periodicals received by Colorado university libraries and a facility for ordering photocopies (at a cost). A long-established, specialized service of this sort is medline from the National Institutes of Health, which indexes and abstracts periodicals in the health fields. Connection through TELNET is provided by many univer- sities, government agencies, companies and libraries. At least one county library in Maryland provides such a connec- tion to carl. Others will be found in research labs and insti- tutes, and in many companies. McGill University maintains a list of these connections on Internet, called archie, which is itself reached through TELNET and FTP. It lists sites and the material that may be obtained at them. Getting through can be like peeling an onion one layer at a time. First, you need access to an Internet-connected system; then, you need access on that system to TELNET or FTP, which may be called by different names or commands. Then the TELNET service prompts or asks for the name of a remote service to "login" or connect. These names are actually addresses of programs at Internet sites: for example, TELNET connections to archie are archie.mcgill.ca in Canada, archie.doc.ic.ac.uk in Great Britain, cs.huji.ac.il in Israel, archie.au in Australia; regional sites in the US include archie.unl.edu, archie.rutgers.edu and archie.sura.net. Some remote services will respond with a prompt for another "login" or a "user" name; others don't. For instance, archie.mcgill.ca and other North American sites connect with a request for a login name, which is "archie" (without the quotation marks). Some others with login names where required are stis.nsf.gov (login: public), which gives information on National Science Foundation programs and awards; for current satellite positions and astronomical data, try tycho.usno.navy.mil (login: ads); melvyl.ucop.edu is the union catalogue of the University of California system libraries; pac.carl.org is the public access catalogue of the Colorado Alliance of Research Libraries and to others from Boston to California; dra.com provides the author and title indexes of the Library of Congress (MARC) catalogue. Most libraries and some other systems will connect without asking for login or user names. Some remote systems will ask for a password instead of or in addition to their login or user names. In most cases, your Internet e-mail address serves as a temporary password and for using FTP services that permit you to transfer files from a remote system.
For Middle East studies researchers and teachers who might want to do more than check on NSF grants, or satellites over the Persian Gulf, or whether the University of California has bought their books (or books their own library hasn't), or the periodicals catalogued in Colorado, there are a few other on-line databases that address special needs. The following were listed in an "Islamic Computer Resource Guide" by Basil Hashem on the soc.religion.islam newsgroup of USENET.
* CalTech Muslim Students Archive Contains the on-line text of the Quran Host: ugcs.caltech.edu Address: 184.108.40.206 Access: via File Transfer Protocol (FTP) Login/Username: anonymous (or FTP) Password: your Internet address Questions: Waqar Malik (firstname.lastname@example.org) Asim Mughal (email@example.com)
* The Islamic School Contains an Islamic subject area at the Cleveland Free-Net Community Computer System of Case Western Reserve University. Introductory information on Islam; many areas are under development including an on-line Quran and hadith, frequently asked questions and information about the Prophet Muhammad. Access: Use one of the following: free-net-a.cwru.edu [220.127.116.11] free-net-b.cwru.edu [18.104.22.168] free-net-c.cwru.edu [22.214.171.124] You will then be asked whether you are a registered user or a vistor. Select 2 to indicate a visitor. Then, select 2 to "Explore the system". Upon being presented with the main menu, type "go islam" to access the Islamic School. Contact: All on Free-Net Eursat Mercan (Sysop) [aa755] Sukru Gultop (Co-sysop) [sxg12] Mesut Sahin (Co-sysop) [mxs44]
* "Snake" Archive Site Contains an archive for the Shakir English Translation of the Quran Host: snake.mcs.kent.edu Address: 126.96.36.199 Access: via File Transfer Protocol (FTP) Login/Username: anonymous (or FTP) Password: your Internet address
* American Arab Scientific Society (AMASS) Software Library contains an archive with a collection of software including Minaret 1.3, Calendrical.l, Prayertimer, and other items. Host: cs.bu.edu Address: 188.8.131.52 Access: via File Transfer Protocol (FTP) Login/Username: anonymous (or FTP) Password: your Internet address An indispensable guide for using Internet and its ser- vices is Zen and the Art of the Internet by Brendan P. Kehoe, available from archie or through your computing center. If you know of other services that would be valuable or interesting for Middle East studies, let us know at firstname.lastname@example.org on Internet or mesabul@cua on Bitnet.
Jon W. Anderson Catholic University of America The Encyclopedia Iranica - A Progress Report
*** The Encyclopedia Iranica was begun eighteen years ago. Ten fascicles of a Persian edition were published under the title D nishn ma-ye r n wa-Isl m before publication was suspended during the Revolution. (An eleventh fascicle has recently appeared under other editorship.) This early version contained many articles translated from the Encyclopedia of Islam with additional articles on Iranian subjects. By 1979 work had also begun on an English edition, eventually entitled the Encyclopedia Iranica and differing from the earlier Persian edition in being focused on the Iranian world. The first fascicles were published in 1982, and publication now proceeds at a rate of six fascicles per year over half a million words. The Encyclopedia is projected to reach fourteen volumes, with a supplementary volume and a volume of indexes. The Encyclopedia is prepared at the Center for Iranian Studies at Columbia University under the general editorship of Ehsan Yarshater with a staff of assistant editors. Almost all articles are written by outside contributors to these priorities: 1. The Iranian peoples. The central editorial policy of the Encyclopedia Iranica is that its subject is to be the history and cultures of the peoples who speak or spoke Iranian languages. For modern times, this means a central focus on the modern state of Iran and, to a lesser extent, Afghanistan and Tajikistan. For ancient times the Encyclopedia Iranica deals with Bactria, Sogdia and Khotan in Central Asia and the provinces of the Persian empire in Anatolia and other parts of the Near East. The Iranica also deals with the relations of Iran with other lands including the classical world, medieval India and the modern European states. 2. The continuity of Iranian history. The Encyclopedia Iranica tends to treat the Iranian world as a continuing entity from pre-Islamic times to the present. Thus, for example, an article on children begins with childbirth in Zoroastrianism and the rights of children in Sasanian Persia and continues through contemporary children's literature. This is an important contribution. Most modern scholars of Islamic Iran know little about pre-Islamic Persian culture, or tend to make the simplifying assumption that pre-Islamic Persian culture vanished with the coming of Islam. While partly true, this is certainly also partly false. The Iranica thus serves as an important corrective to the tendency to neglect the survival of pre-Islamic cultural traits in the Iranian cultural world. 3. Complementing other reference books. The Encyclopedia Iranica tries to avoid duplicating related scholarly reference works, such as the Encyclopedia of Islam and the new D 'irat al-Ma rif-e Buzurg-e Isl m . This means that its editor tends to deemphasize subjects of largely Islamic interest having little specially to do with Persia, although the Encyclopedia does deal fairly thoroughly with Shi ism and will generally give full treatment of the Islamic aspects of a topic that is also treated in other contexts. Subjects that have been treated fully in the Encyclopedia of Islam are much less likely to be included in the Iranica if they have limited special relevance to Persia. Biographies of clerics and other Islamic figures are treated with great thoroughness in D 'irat al-Ma rif-e Buzurg-e Isl m . Such people are quite likely to be omitted from the Iranica unless they are especially important. 4. Ancient Iran and Zoroastrianism. Pre-Islamic Iran, Zoroastrianism and other ancient Iranian religions, ancient Iranian languages and related subjects are covered very thoroughly. For this field, there is no reference book remotely comparable. Iranian linguistics is also treated in detail. 5. Abstract subjects. More general subjects like eschatology, burial, clothing and calendars are treated thoroughly. Likewise, there are serial articles on important places and events such as Central Asia, Chinese-Iranian relations, Christianity and the Constitutional Revolution of 1905-11. Again, this responds to gaps in other reference works. The Encyclopedia of Islam tends to focus on biography and historical geography and generally does not include the sort of article that traces a more abstract topic throughout history. Such articles have become steadily more important in the makeup of Encyclopedia Iranica. 6. The cultural and physical environment. The Iranica deals with many subjects that are often beneath the notice of scholarly reference works: flora and fauna, folklore, popular culture and cookery. For example, articles on particular plants and fruits contain information on their distribution and taxonomy in Iran, the history of the words used for them, their use in traditional medicine, their cultivation and economic role and their use in traditional and contemporary Persian cuisine. 7. Scholarly rigor. Articles in the Encyclopedia Iranica are expected to be thoroughly documented and to include comprehensive, or at least representative, bibliography. Editing is very strict, and authors learn to expect extensive queries. Aside from the need to be extremely careful about conserving space, there is great emphasis on accuracy. Obviously, not everything can be checked but each article is @gone over by at least three editors. If problems develop, the article may be checked line by line and make several trips between author and editors. Anyone who has done such work knows the innumerable problems that inevitably occur, but the Encyclopedia has generally been able to maintain a gratifying level of scholarly rigor. Five volumes have been published to date, totaling 5,000 pages and perhaps 3,000 articles. The first third of the sixth volume is either published or in press. The last of the C entries will be in press by the end of the year. Most of the D's have been written and are being edited. Most of the E's have been invited, and about a quarter of them are already written. Some of the F articles have also been invited. The current goal is to build a sufficient backlog of edited articles to avoid future delays. Since the beginning of the fifth volume, the Encyclop3dia Iranica has been published by Mazda Publishers of Costa Mesa, California, a publisher specializing in Iranian topics. The Iranica is available by subscription, either for fascicles or whole bound volumes. The Encyclopedia Iranica is supported by a major grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities and matching funds from interested individuals, organizations and foundations. For information on the Encyclopedia Iranica, contact the Center for Iranian Studies, Columbia University, 450 Riverside Drive, Suite 4, New York, New York 10027. For purchasing information contact Mazda Publishers, P.0. Box 2603, Costa Mesa, California 92626, tel.: 714-751-5252, fax: 714-751-4805. John Walbridge Center for Iranian Studies The Oral History of Iran Collections of the Foundation for Iranian Studies *** The Foundation for Iranian Studies has been carrying out an oral history program since 1982 to produce an archive of source material for contemporary Iranian history. Interviews are conducted with decision-makers and witnesses to historical events. The fields of interest include politics, economics, the arts, literature, bureaucracy, cultural change, higher education, intelligence and security matters, the intelli- gentsia, political dissent, student politics, the royal family, military, diplomatic relations, minority affairs and the women's movement. The collection focuses specifically on the working of bureaucratic and political organizations that have had significant impact on contemporary Iranian history. They include the Central Intelligence Agency, Confederation of Iranian Students, Imperial Court, National Iranian Oil Company, National Iranian Radio and Television Organization, SAVAK, the Tudeh Party and the Women's Organization of Iran. The oral history collection now contains 190 interviews, primarily in Persian, but also in English. A catalogue entitled The Oral History Collection of the Foundation for Iranian Studies edited by Gholam Reza Afkhami and Seyyed Vali Reza Nasr and published in 1991 provides detailed information on the first 180 interviews of the program. It contains an introduction to the program and a description of its methodology, synopses of interviews, classification of inter- views by subject and profession of the interviewee, subject and name indexes and guidelines which govern the use of the collection. The catalogue is available from the Foundation for Iranian Studies in Bethesda, Maryland, USA. 140 of the interviews have now been transcribed. Interviews with no restrictions on their use are available to serious research scholars. The collection is currently kept at the offices of the Foundation for Iranian Studies in Bethesda. The Foundation intends to facilitate a wider use of the collection by providing research libraries with micro-fiche copies of the interviews. A special project within the program on Iran-American relations is prepared jointly with the Oral History Research Office of Columbia University. Twenty-three interviews that comprise this special project have been conducted with former US ambassadors and other members of the US Embassy in Iran, and with ranking members of the State Department, Central Intelligence Agency, Defense Department and National Security Council who have dealt with Iran since the 1950s. Copies of these interviews are kept at the Foundation for Iranian Studies, the Oral History Research Office of Columbia University and the Hoover Institution at Stanford University. The Oral History Program of the Foundation for Iranian Studies is a continuing project. New interviews are being added to the collection, and the additions will be introduced to researchers in the future editions of the catalogue to the collection. Contact: Secretary, Foundation for Iranian Studies, 4343 Montgomery Avenue, Suite 200, Bethesda, MD 20814, USA. Tel: (301)-657-1990 Vali Nasr Foundation for Iranian Studies Maghreb Maps Collection at CEMAT Library ***
THE CENTER FOR MAGHRIBI STUDIES in Tunis (Centre d'Etudes Maghrbines Tunis) has an extensive collection of more than 800 sheets of maps of Algeria, Libya, Morocco and Tunisia from the US War Office, World War II, that are now catalogued, computerized and available for consultation. Another map donation of the district of Tunis has been received from the American Cooperative School of Tunis. The library contains over 1700 volumes, more than 650 of which are dissertations written primarily in the US (also in Great Britain) and dealing with aspects of one of the five Maghrib countries. There is also a collection of offprints of journal articles contributed by researchers. CEMAT, B.P. 404, 1049 Tunis- Hached. Resident Director: Jeanne Jeffers Mrad. Bitnet: cemat@tnearn. Internet: email@example.com Where Can I Get the Latest Arabic Books? *** The Bulletin of the American Institute for Yemeni Studies recommends the International Book Exchange (35-16 Ditmars Blvd., Suite 111, Astoria, NY 11105), which is an authorized distributor for over 40 publishers in the Middle East. An outgrowth of the Beruit Permanent Book Fair created in Lebanon, IBE has catalogues for children's books, school texts and a general catalogue. It deals directly with publishers and has discounted prices. Tel. 800-982-7432 Fax. 718-278- 8026 On-Line Reference Librarians
*** The Graduate School of Library and Information Science of Rosary College operates a network where reference librarians "who are stumped in their efforts to find a particular bit of information are getting help from their colleagues," according to the Chronicle of Higher Education (30 September 1992). The service connects more than 500 librarians and researchers on five continents through an Internet electronic mail list. Librarians may subscribe by sending the e-mail message, sub stumper-l, followed by your name, to firstname.lastname@example.org. Journals/Serials ISLAMIC THOUGHT AND SCIENTIFIC CREATIVITY is an international quarterly journal of the Organization of Islamic Conference (OIC) Standing Committee on Scientific and Technological Cooperation (COMSTECH) published in Pakistan. The Chief Editor is M.A. Kazi, COMSTECH, 3 Constitution Avenue, G-5/2, Islamabad. The Organization also publishes COMSTECH News bi- monthly. ASIAN BUSINESS CONTENTS is a bi-monthly journal that re- produces tables of contents of business, trade, finance and economics periodicals covering Asia. The editor is Mrs. Latifah Kassim, Asian Business Contents, P.O. Box 12760, 50788 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. JOURNAL OF MAGHREBI STUDIES is a new bilingual (English & French) North American journal for studies of the Maghreb and Maghrebis in diaspora. The journal will appear twice a year and is calling for papers on literature, immigration, history, politics, anthropology, sociology, women and popular culture. Contact: Rachid A. Hassani, Managing Editor, Journal of Maghrebi Studies, Box 1257, Cambridge, MA 02238. AL-AHRAM, the Arabic-language daily newspaper from Cairo, is available on 35 mm. microfilm from 1876 onward, one reel per month, and on microfiche (1986-1990). Also on 35 mm. microfilm are Al-Ahram Al Ektisadi (1950-1990), Al-Seyasi Al Dawlia (1965-1990) and the Al-Ahram index (1952-1986). For pricing contact: Norman Ross Publishing, Inc., 330 West 58th Street, New York, NY 10019. Language & Research Programs THE ARABIC LANGUAGE INSTITUTE, an affiliate of the American Language Center, offers programs in Arabic and is interested in exploring collaboration with academic institutions including hosting seminars and year-abroad programs. The Institute offers intensive Moroccan colloquial and Modern Standard Arabic, coordinated by an ETS-authorized examiner in Moroccan colloquial Arabic, courses on Moroccan culture and readings in Islamic texts and a program of extracurricular activities. Contact: Daoud S. Casewit, Director, The Arabic Language Institute, P.O. Box 2136, Fes, Morocco. NATIONAL FOREIGN LANGUAGE RESOURCE CENTER conducts research, develops materials and trains language professionals to improve foreign language instruction in the United States. The Center offers a senior Fellows Program, an Internship Program, an Intensive Summer Institute and three publications series: Technical Reports on research relating to second language learning, Teaching Materials for less commonly taught languages and Research Notes on on-going projects and language teaching software. Contact: NFLRC, University of Hawaii, Webster 203, 2528 The Mall, Honolulu HI 96822. Internet: email@example.com AL-FURQAN ISLAMIC HERITAGE FOUNDATION, established by the Yamani Cultural Foundation in 1988, aims to promote, sponsor and initiate research in the field of Islamic manuscripts, to assist in their preservation and restoration and in cataloguing previously uncatalogued collections. The Foundation plans to assist publication of significant manuscripts and to hold academic conferences to stimulate discussion and action in the field. The Foundation has published a survey of Islamic manuscripts (through E.J. Brill) and started a reference library that will give priority to printed catalogues of Islamic manuscripts and important sources in the fields of Islamic studies. Contact: Secretary-General, Al-Fuqan Islamic Heritage Foundation, Eagle House, High Street, Wimbledon, London SW19 5EF. Tel. 081-944-1233 Fax. 081-944-1633 THE MIDDLE EAST AWARDS PROGRAM (MEAwards) assists the de- velopment of regional capacities for research on population and development in the Arab countries and Turkey. The program is cross-disciplinary, drawing on fields such as demography, economics, political science, sociology, anthropology and community health. The program supports social scientists interested in investigating interrelationships between population and social policy in the context of development with various disciplinary or interdisciplinary approaches. Two main types of awards available through the program are Research Awards and Fellowships. The program also sponsors study groups and workshops, usually in collaboration with national and regional institutions, to bring together regional researchers working on a topic of special relevance to the region for discussion of methodology and results. The program also offers technical consultation to researchers who need special assistance to help carry out projects. Results of study groups, workshops and some of the research papers produced by MEAwards projects are published in the Regional Papers of the MEAwards program. A list of papers in the series and individual reprints are available from the MEAwards Secretariat. All correspondence, proposals and applications to: MEAwards Secretariat, P.O. Box 115, Dokki, Giza, Egypt.