University of Bergen

The Middle East on the Internet

From 1995, the Centre has run a rapidly expanding information service on the Web, which currently covers about 500 different documents with a total of more than 3,000 pages of text and over five megabytes of downloadable files relating to Arabic and the Middle East. The site is popular, there are about 2,000 visits a week to our pages, and an average of 70 megabytes of text or files are downloaded from them every day.

The archive is divided into four main areas of text documents.

  • The Middle East Studies in Bergen region covers a survey of research on the Middle East in Bergen, which is also published on paper, but here with staff list updated, and accumulated lists of publications, dissertations passed and similar. It also contains some seminar plans and papers (in Norwegian), catalogues of books and journals in the Centre library and other material relevant for the local environment. There is also further information of the various books and journals published from the Centre. It also contains, in Norwegian, information for local students.

  • The Nordic Society region archives the on-line Nordic bulletin of Middle Eastern studies (64 issues with 400 pp. in all until mid-2003), material from the printed Members' Newsletter (such as an evaluation of Arabic teaching programs for foreigners in the Middle East) and information on future events organized by the Society, as well as an extensive list of conferences and seminars on the Middle East or Islam around the world. It also contains the full text proceedings of the Third and Fourth Nordic Middle Eastern conferences in Joensuu and Oslo and abstracts from the fourth in Lund.

    Adjunct to the Nordic Society region is the Web archive of the European Association for Middle Eastern studies (EURAMES) with material from the association as well as some material from the 'Individual and Society' European research project which ended in 2001. The project's mailing list is also hosted at Bergen.

  • The Sudanic Africa region includes the Table of Contents of the volumes published to date. It also contains a selection of articles from each volume, in addition to the full sections on bibliographies; book reviews and notes and communication.

    The Sudanic Africa Texts and Sources Archive contains material relating to Sudanic Africa that has not been published on paper or elsewhere. This includes 'The Nuba Mountains: who spoke what in 1976?', a survey with documentation prepared by Professor Herman Bell.

  • The fourth section is related to computer questions, and constitutes the Arabic Macintosh Information Centre. Although informal and established from the accumulated knowledge at the Centre, it contains the basic information material on 'Arabizing' this computer, reviews and surveys of programs in Arabic etc.

    It also discusses other computer matters relating to Arabic or other non-European scripts. In addition to this, the archive contains software, including Centre-created fonts for transliterated Arabic (the 'Jaghbub package'), widely used in book production and privately across the world.

    Adjunct to this are numerous tools produced at the Centre for the aid of Arabic or transliteration, thus for alphabetic sorting of texts with such diacriticals, tools for converting Arabic script files between the Macintosh and various PC / Windows formats; for converting non-compatible files into a more modern format etc.

    There is also a section on using non-European languages on the Internet in general, with a set of tools that will allow a common email program (Eudora) exchange email in most languages and scripts of the world. This online information centre / archive is internationally recognized as the most complete of its kind, and is referenced as the Arabic resource unit from Apple Co.'s Web server.

    The Centre Web server is accessed at: http://www.smi.uib.no.



Centre for Middle Eastern and Islamic Studies (SMI)
Phone + 47 55 58 26 47, fax + 47 55 58 98 91, e-mail: post@smi.uib.no
Postal address: SMI, University of Bergen. PO Box 7800 Bergen, Norway
Visiting address: SMI, 5th floor , Stein Rokkans Hus, Nygårdsgaten 5, 5015 Bergen