Tuesday, December 7, 2021

Diarna : The Geo-Museum of North African and Middle Eastern Jewish Life

 Diarna : The Geo-Museum of North African and Middle Eastern Jewish Life

"Diarna (דיארנא ديارنا “Our homes” in Judeo-Arabic): The Geo-Museum of North African and Middle Eastern Jewish Life is working to digitally preserve the physical remnants of Jewish history throughout the region. We are in a race against time to capture site data and record place-based oral histories before even the memories of these communities are lost.

Diarna pioneers the synthesis of digital mapping technology, traditional scholarship, and field research, as well as a trove of multimedia documentation. All of these combine to lend a virtual presence and guarantee untrammeled access to Jewish historical sites lest they be forgotten or erased."

Formerly known as: Diarna: Mapping Mizrahi Heritage

Sunday, December 5, 2021

Open Access Manuscripts Collection: Manuscripta Islamica Rossica

Manuscripta Islamica Rossica

The created portal already functions as a unique library resource and access point to information about Arabic, Persian and Turkic manuscripts and old printed books in Russian collections in the Internet. Currently a free access to digitized copies of the eleven copies of the Qur'an (the full manuscripts and as well as its sections-juz) of the 17‒19 centuries and about a dozen manuscripts of commentaries (tafsirs), prayer books, theological works, collections of poems is provided. The participants of the project who provided the manuscripts, are the Archive of Russian Academy of Sciences, Institute of Oriental studies of the RAS, Scientific library, MGIMO(University) of the MFA of the Russian Federation, All-Russia State library for foreign literature, State Public Scientific-technological library of the Siberian branch of the RAS in Novosibirsk, Astrakhan regional scientific library, and other.

See also: Alphabetical list of Open Access Islamic Manuscripts Collections

Wednesday, December 1, 2021

Careers in Middle East Librarianship: MELA Workshop

Middle East Library Association(MELA,) Education Committee welcomes all to attend:

Careers in Middle East Librarianship

Friday, Dec 10, 2021 at 12:00pm EST

Are you graduating soon with an M.A. or Ph.D. degree in Middle East studies, and curious about librarianship as a professional option for using your academic research skills? Have you been adjunct instructing for a while and wondering how to turn your experience and subject knowledge to a rewarding alternative academic career? You may have been wondering, What exactly does a subject-specialist librarian do? Do you need to have an MLIS to get a job as a subject librarian? How do you gain experience in cataloging? Will you get to read books all day?

This workshop, sponsored by the Middle East Librarians Association (MELA), will consist of three parts: part one will feature brief presentations by professional librarians who have come to the profession via different pathways, and working at public or private institutions. Participants will learn more about the work librarians do, how they participate in the intellectual work of the institutions they are associated with–in fact as partners contributing to research and teaching–and how the profession of Middle East librarianship is moving to address profound changes in technology, publishing, and society.  In part two, the workshop will offer practical tips on applying to library school, how to gain related experience, and how previous experience can be highlighted on your c.v. The third part of the workshop will be reserved for your questions and discussion.  https://www.mela.us/

Please register for the virtual workshop:   https://tinyurl.com/MELALibrary

Panelist and Chair:

  • Dale Correa, University of Texas, Austin, Chair
  • Sarah DeMott, Harvard University , Head of Education Committee
  • Emily Witsell, Wofford College
  • Mohamed Hamed, University of California, Berkeley
  • Salma Abumeeiz, University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA)
  • Amanda Hannoosh Steinberg, Harvard University
  • William Kopycki, Library of Congress, Cairo Overseas Office

Please contact me directly if you have any questions regarding registration or accessibility needs.  This event will be conducted in English and recorded with an edited version available on the MELA YouTube Channel.

Sincerest regards,

Sarah DeMott, PhD, MLS
Middle East Library Association
MELA, Education Committee, head
MELA, Mentorship Program, head


Sarah DeMott, PhD, MLS

Faculty Librarian for Freshman Seminars
Library Liaison for Judaica, Near East, and Middle East Studies
Harvard College Library



pronouns: she, her, hers


Sunday, November 28, 2021

Ahiqar - The Story of Ahiqar in its Syriac and Arabic Tradition

The Story of Ahiqar in its Syriac and Arabic Tradition is a project funded by the German Research Foundation (DFG) and hosted by both the Faculty of Theology of the University of Göttingen and the Göttingen State and University Library. It aims to index and make accessible the Ahiqar story in its Syriac and Arabic transmission branches.



Tuesday, November 23, 2021

Siwi corpus

Siwi corpus

A small part of the Siwi corpus I gathered during PhD and postdoctoral fieldwork is now publicly accessible online, with more planned. Despite my best efforts, there will undoubtedly be some number of errors in transcription and translation; hopefully being able to listen to the audio will make these easier to correct in the long term. (Feel free to comment here or by email.) Some of these recordings may be of particular interest:
  • Four facts about Siwa, short as it is, is a perfect starting point for understanding Siwa anthropologically; the speaker chooses four questions about Siwa, of his own devising, and answers them.
  • The story of the Prophet Joseph is probably the best long narrative I was privileged to record during my fieldwork, retelling a well-known Islamic story with energy and eloquence, and giving numerous examples of grammatical features rarely attested in shorter texts.
  • Paradigm of the Siwi verb əlməd "learn" - does what it says on the tin, and as such makes a great introduction to Siwi verb morphology. Pay particular attention to the position of stress. Not all forms of the verb are included in this recording, but the remainder can easily be derived from these ones.

The speaker recorded in these, Sherif Bougdoura, was a thoughtful and intelligent person, trying to find the right balance between local and national cultures, who made his living as a repairman for lack of opportunities to take his education further. He sadly died young in a work accident several years ago. I hope these recordings will serve to preserve his memory as well as to facilitate linguistic analysis.


Monday, November 15, 2021

OA journal: ئىزدىنىش ژۇرنىلى ئۇيغۇر ئەدەبىياتىغا بېغىشلانغان ئۇنىۋېرسال ئەدەبىي ژۇرنال (Izdinish)


"مەزكۇر ژۇرنال ئۇيغۇر ئەدەبىياتىنى ئۆز ئىچىگە ئالغان دۇنيا ئەدەبىياتىدىكى كىلاسسىك ۋە نادىر ئەسەرلەرنى ئوقۇرمەنلەرگە تەقدىم قىلىش، ئۇيغۇر تىلىدا ئىجادىيەت بىلەن شۇغۇللىنىدىغان كەسپ ئىگىلىرى ۋە ھەۋەسكارلارنىڭ ئەسەرلىرىنى ئېلان قىلىش، ئۇيغۇر ئەدەبىياتىنى ۋە ئەدەبىي تىلىنى باشقا تۈركىي مىللەتلەرگە تونۇشتۇرۇش، شۇنداقلا ئۇيغۇر تىلىدىكى بىر ژۇرنالنى مەزمۇن ۋە سۈپەت جەھەتتىن تەرەققىي قىلدۇرۇپ، خەلقئارادىكى سۈپەتلىك ئەدەبىي ژۇرناللارنىڭ سەۋىيەسىگە يەتكۈزۈشنى مەقسەت قىلىدىغان پەسىللىك ئەدەبىي ژۇرنال. مەزكۇر ژۇرنالدا پەقەت ئەدەبىي ئەسەرلەرلا ئېلان قىلىنىدىغان بولۇپ، بىۋاستە ئۇيغۇرچە يېزىلغان ياكى باشقا تىللاردىن ئۇيغۇرچىغا تەرجىمە قىلىنغان ئەسەلەر قۇبۇل قىلىنىدۇ."

(Uyghur literary journal)

Izdinish: https://izdinish.org/. 

Thursday, November 4, 2021

One Off Journal Issues: La grammaire arabe étendue

One Off Journal Issues: La grammaire arabe étendue

Occasionally issues of journals where one might not normally think to look produce thematic issues of interest. Availability online makes them much more discoverable. A case in point:

La grammaire arabe étendue. Volume 42-1 | 2020 of Histoire Épistémologie Langage

La grammaire arabe étendue

Sous la direction de Jean-Patrick Guillaume


New OA Book: Intra-European Litigation in Eighteenth-Century Izmir


"Scholars have long debated the use of law to settle international trade disputes in the early modern period. In this book, Tijl Vanneste uses the case study of commercial litigation before the Dutch consular court of Izmir to argue that merchants relied on a particular blend of mercantile customs, which he calls ‘the merchants’ style’, and specific legal forms and procedures, laid down in written regulations, and dependent on local and international circumstances. The book challenges the idea of a universal ‘law merchant’, to replace it with a more nuanced analysis that centralizes the interplay between informal merchant custom, as advocated by traders and judges alike, and formal procedural legislation, drawn mostly from Roman law, in the resolution of mercantile disputes."

Copyright Year: 2022
E-Book (PDF)
Availability: Published ISBN: 978-90-04-49823-5Publication Date: 01 Nov 2021

Link: https://brill.com/view/title/39091. 

Tuesday, November 2, 2021

Digital Dictionaries of South Asia

On the website Digital Dictionaries of South Asia a variety of dictionaries is available that can be either searched online or downloaded as pdf files. Examples of available languages are

Steingass Persian-English Dictionary

Hayyim Persian-English Dictionary

Heston Pashto-English Dictionary

Platts dictionary of Urdu, Classical Hindi and English

other languages available are:


































Thursday, October 14, 2021

Türk Karikatür Basımları Koleksiyonu - Turkish Cartoon Prints Collection


Türk Karikatür Basımları Koleksiyonu - Turkish Cartoon Prints Collection

Koç University offers a large collection of digital content including prints, photographs, slides, maps, newspapers, posters, postcards, manuscripts, streaming video, and more. The collections consist of the materials of the Koç University Libraries and Archives, Koç University Faculty and Departments, and projects carried out in partnership with the Koç University Libraries. One of the unique collections that they offer is a large collection of Turkish cartoons.

Friday, October 8, 2021

Open Art Images

Al-Hajj Hafiz Muhammad Nuri, Turkey, 1801

The website Open Art Images offers a broad scope of images including many images on Islamic Art. These images can be used freely in presentations but also on websites. OAI is a SEARCH AND VISUALIZATION ENGINE FOR HIGH-RESOLUTION IMAGES OF ARTWORKS - from all around the world and from every period in history - that belong to the public domain or to a type of Creative Commons license which allows their reuse. All Images come with detailed information, relevant to the understanding of their historical and cultural context and which informs the user about their current location, source and license.

OAI respects the privacy of its users by adopting completely anonymous tracking technologies.

Wednesday, October 6, 2021

Visual Resources of the Middle East

Yale University holds a wide array of images from the Middle East across its encyclopedic collections. Yale University Art Gallery (YUAG) has manuscript paintings from early modern Iran and India, and strong holdings in textiles, ceramics, photography and contemporary art. 18th- and 19th-century highlights include objects that document British travels through the Middle East from the Yale Center for British Art and the Lewis Walpole Library. Sterling Memorial Library offers visual resources from books and periodicals published in Persian, Arabic, and Turkish, while the Cushing/Whitney Medical Library houses numerous scientific manuscripts. Beinecke Library's renowned rare book and manuscript collections encompass resources from Safavid Shahnama manuscripts to 20th-century field photographs. Included among the Peabody Museum of Natural History’s collection are archaeological objects from the Islamic world. Artstor also includes the YUAG Gerasa and Dura-Europos collections. Image credit: Tapestry of a Hunting Scene, Iranian/Persian, mid-16th century, Yale University Art Gallery

Hill Museum & Manuscript Library (HMML) Authority File

The Hill Museum & Manuscript Library (HMML) at Saint John’s University has developed a new database to support and enhance the study of understudied manuscript traditions.

"HMML Authority File (HAF) is an open access database that shares lists of authorities used in HMML’s Reading Room and Museum. Metadata in HAF is submitted to the Library of Congress’s Name Authority Cooperative Program (NACO) as part of HMML’s partnership in the Program for Cooperative Cataloging. The HMML Authority File is part of the Resources for Description of Manuscripts from Understudied Christian and Islamic Traditions project funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities that will help build the scholarly infrastructure to create access to endangered manuscripts digitized by the Hill Museum & Manuscript Library. HAF is a living authority file improved over time. Some authorities may begin as sparse records but grow in detail as additional information is uncovered."

Tuesday, October 5, 2021

ARCHNET NEXT: Open Access Library on the Built Environment of Muslim Societies


The Aga Khan Documentation Center at MIT (AKDC@MIT) and the Aga Khan Trust for Culture are pleased to invite you to explore this new iteration of the largest online library focused on the built environments of Muslim societies. ARCHNET NEXT is the first major revisioning of the site since 2013 and only the 2nd in the +20 years Archnet has been available. ARCHNET NEXT is designed to be more responsive to users in all corners of the world and on all sorts of devices. We look forward to your feedback!

Aga Khan Museum: Publications
Bing and Harrington Balkan Archive (BHBA)
Architecture and Urban Development of the Deccan Sultanates
Eastern Architectures Secular and Religious: From Pre-historic Times to the Early Twentieth Century
Historic Photos of Architecture from The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Department of Islamic Art
A3-Archnet Collaborative for the Documentation of Africa's Built Heritage
Architecture, Ceremonial, and Power: The Topkapi Palace in the Fifteenth and Sixteenth Centuries
Conservation and Local Development
The Mughals, Uzbeks, and the Timurid Legacy
Mughal Architecture: An Outline of Its History and Development (1526-1858)
Rehabilitation of Souk al-Saqatiyya
Aleppo, Syria
El Emir Abdelkader Mosque
9J4Q+RJ Constantine, Algeria, Algeria
Ankara Office Towers
Ankara, Turkey
Benedictine Monastery of Toumliline
Azrou, Morocco
Urban Renewal of Samora Machel Street Precint
17 Samora Machel St, Durban Central, Durban, 4001, South Africa, South Africa
Bala Hissar Conservation
Kabul, Afghanistan
Ode Omu Central Mosque
Ode Omu, Nigeria



Friday, October 1, 2021

New OA Book: Osmanlı Dönemi İzmir Plan ve Haritaları


Osmanlı Dönemi
İzmir Plan ve Haritaları

19. yüzyılda Osmanlı Devleti’nin başkent İstanbul’dan sonra ikinci büyük ticaret merkezi olan İzmir’in bu süreçte geçirdiği dönüşümü plan ve haritalar eşliğinde bizlere sunan kitapta, bu dönemde hazırlanmış plan ve haritalar ilk kez bir araya getirilmiştir.

ISBN: 9786055826246 6055826240

İzmir Plan ve Haritaları: https://kulturyayinlari.izka.org.tr/osmanli-donemi-izmir-plan-ve-haritalari/

Monday, September 13, 2021

New OA book: A Handbook and Reader of Ottoman Arabic

"Written forms of Arabic composed during the era of the Ottoman Empire present an immensely fruitful linguistic topic. Extant texts display a proximity to the vernacular that cannot be encountered in any other surviving historical Arabic material, and thus provide unprecedented access to Arabic language history.

This rich material remains very little explored. Traditionally, scholarship on Arabic has focussed overwhelmingly on the literature of the various Golden Ages between the 8th and 13th centuries, whereas texts from the 15th century onwards have often been viewed as corrupted and not worthy of study. The lack of interest in Ottoman Arabic culture and literacy left these sources almost completely neglected in university courses.

This volume is the first linguistic work to focus exclusively on varieties of Christian, Jewish and Muslim Arabic in the Ottoman Empire of the 15th to the 20th centuries, and present Ottoman Arabic material in a didactic and easily accessible way. Split into a Handbook and a Reader section, the book provides a historical introduction to Ottoman literacy, translation studies, vernacularisation processes, language policy and linguistic pluralism. The second part contains excerpts from more than forty sources, edited and translated by a diverse network of scholars.

The material presented includes a large number of yet unedited texts, such as Christian Arabic letters from the Prize Paper collections, mercantile correspondence and notebooks found in the Library of Gotha, and Garshuni texts from archives of Syriac patriarchs."

A Handbook and Reader of Ottoman Arabic
Esther-Miriam Wagner (ed.) | September 2021
488pp. | 4 B&W or colour illustration | 6.14" x 9.21" (234 x 156 mm)
Semitic Languages and Cultures | ISSN: 2632-6906 (Print); 2632-6914 (Online)ISBN Paperback: 9781783749416
ISBN Hardback: 9781783749423
ISBN Digital (PDF): 9781783749430

DOI: 10.11647/OBP.0208
Subject Codes: BIC: CFF (Historical and comparative linguistics), CFP (Translation and interpretation); BISAC: REL006020 (RELIGION / Biblical Biography / General), LAN009010 (LANGUAGE ARTS & DISCIPLINES / Linguistics / Historical & Comparative)

Link: https://www.openbookpublishers.com/product/1168

Abbasid History Podcast

With 32 episodes made so far, the Abbasid History podcast is a great way to learn more about this specific period in history. The makers of the podcast formulate their intentions as follows: "An audio platform for the study of the pre-modern Islamic(ate) past and beyond. We interview academics, archivists and artists on their work for peers and junior students in the field. We aim to educate, inspire, perhaps infuriate, and on the way entertain a little too. Suitable also for general listeners with an interest in geographically diverse medieval history."