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This website contains the on-line versions of books previously published in hard copy by the Federal Research Division of the Library of Congress under the Country Studies/Area Handbook Program sponsored by the U.S. Updated irregularly.
Information about countries under the Bureau of Near Eastern Affairs of the US Department of State is available through the links on the page.
Library Reference Databases
These databases are available through Gelman and provide reference information, including information on the Middle East and North Africa. If you are outside of Gelman, you are required to log in to access them.
The Encyclopaedia of Islam Online sets out the present state of our knowledge of the Islamic World. It is an authoritative source not only for the religion, but also for the believers and the countries in which they live. Includes access to the First, Second and Third Editions, the Second Edition Glossary, and the Historical Atlas of Islam.
The Encyclopedia of Women & Islamic Cultures crosses history, geographic borders and disciplines to create a reference work reflecting research on gender studies and the Islamic world. Useful for researchers in the fields of gender studies, Middle Eastern and Islamic studies, as well as scholars of religion, history, politics, anthropology, geography and related disciplines.
The Encyclopedia of Arabic Language and Linguistics Online comprehensively covers all aspects of Arabic languages and linguistics. It covers pre-Classical, Classical, Modern Standard, vernaculars and mixed varieties of Arabic.
The Siraj al-tawarikh is the most important history of Afghanistan ever written. The roots of much of the fabric of Afghanistan's society today - tribe and state relations, the rule of law, gender issues, and the economy - are elegantly and minutely detailed in this immense work.
Encompassing over 5,000 A–Z reference entries, chapters from scholarly and introductory works, Qur'anic materials, primary sources, images, maps, and timelines, Oxford Islamic Studies Online offers a multi-layered reference experience designed to provide a first stop for anyone needing information and context on Islam.
General collections that contain material on the Middle East
Provides detailed country surveys containing the latest analytical, statistical and directory data available for over 250 countries and territories. This resource also provides analytical essays on the following regions: Africa South of the Sahara Central and South-Eastern Europe, Eastern Europe, Russia and Central Asia, The Far East and Australasia, The Middle East and North Africa, South America, Central America and the Caribbean, South Asia, The USA and Canada, and Western Europe.
Includes over 200 titles, updated regularly, in the Oxford Companions and Oxford Dictionaries series. The collection covers a wide variety of subjects from the sciences, social sciences, and humanities.
Arab Media and Society is the primary reference for understanding the role of media in shaping Arab societies and the broader Muslim world. The journal is committed to combining academic peer-reviewed articles with timely well informed on-the-ground accounts of developments. This depth and range of content is what distinguishes Arab Media & Society.
Encyclopedia Iranica is a resource dedicated to the study of Iranian civilization in the Middle East, the Caucasus, Central Asia and the Indian Subcontinent. The academic reference work will eventually cover all aspects of Iranian history and culture as well as all Iranian languages and literatures, facilitating the whole range of Iranian studies research from archeology to political sciences.
This PBS special puts world events in context and provides a timeline of Middle East history since 1900. The page has various themed pages: politics, religion, culture, economics, science and technology, and geography. It also has more focused information on big-picture questions of US policy, religious militancy, roles of women, stereotypes, natural resources and nation-states.