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This guide will serve as a gateway to library and internet resources for understanding the contemporary uprisings and socio-political transformations in the Middle East
Last Updated: Jun 2, 2015 URL: Print Guide RSS Updates

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What's What

Journal Articles are found online through our licensed Databases or directly through our eJournals.

Databases are found by title or subject in the following lists:

Library Subject Guides are a good place to start looking for information. Each of the over 80 guides lists resources that are the best for a given subject.

Databases A-Z list is good if you know the name of the database you want to use. 

eJournals A-Z list is good if you want to jump directly into a journal you want to use. Especially good if you have a citation and are trying to find a specific, known article.


Recent Books @ Brown on the Arab Spring

You can always find new titles from the past six months by clicking on the new titles link from the library page.

A useful list of new and forthcoming books on the Arab Spring is maintained here

Cover Art
The Arab Awakening Unveiled - Esam Al-Amin
ISBN: 9780937165157
Publication Date: 2013-02-01

Cover Art
Roots of the Arab Spring - Dafna Hochman Rand
ISBN: 9780812245301
Publication Date: 2013-05-17

Cover Art
Artists and the Arab Uprisings - Lowell H. Schwartz; Dalia Dassa Kaye; Jeffrey Martini
ISBN: 9780833080363
Publication Date: 2013-06-28


Understanding the recent protest movements in the Middle East

From the self-immolation of a young Tunisian fruit seller to the overthrow of long-standing regimes across the Arab Middle East, the events of the so-called “Arab Spring” have brought renewed attention to the struggle for human dignity in this region. As events have developed since December 2010 the world has witnessed diverse forms of popular uprising that have forced scholars to question many paradigms about the political, cultural, economic  and religious structures across the Middle East. From Libya to Yemen, from Egypt to Bahrain new voices have emerged to overcome the fear of repression that has often stifled dissent and the ability to examine issues of democracy, self-determination, human rights, social reform, political and religious authority and many other concerns.  While scholars and others will debate the causes that led to these large-scale movements and speculate about their eventual outcomes, the events themselves have generated new modes of social interaction that have changed the processes through which people communicate and act in the public sphere and have fundamentally transformed the record of those activities. This site is an attempt to capture something of those processes through an engaged and even activist form of event-based librarianship.


Capturing the Record of the Arab Spring

As diplomats, politicians, activists, scholars and ordinary citizens debate what these changes will bring and whether they will truly transform the policies and conditions that affect the lives of people both within and outside of the region, it is important record and collect the ways in which these events have captured our attention.  The goal for this guide is to provide students, researchers and others, both at Brown and elsewhere, with resources that allow access to the primary and secondary sources that allow for careful analysis and understanding of these events. While no such site can serve as a complete repository, the aim is for these pages is to offer something of a representative sample of the diversity of materials available through the library and elsewhere, whether as printed matter, digital-born  media, material and visual culture and other forms of expression.

The links below are some of the most comprehensive and continuously updated sites providing a breadth of coverage on the ongoing events in the Middle East. These are good starting points for gaining a background in the issues and debates.

  • Jadaliyya  
    Jadaliyya provides a unique source of insight and critical analysis that combines local knowledge, scholarship, and advocacy with an eye to audiences in the United States, the Arab world, and beyond. The site currently publishes posts both in Arabic and in English.
  • Arab Spring timeline from The Guardian online
    A useful tool for charting the events across the many countries that have had a role in the protest movements. Produced by Garry Blight, Sheila Pulham and Paul Torpey.
  • Issue Guide: One Year of 'Arab Spring' Upheavals
    A collection of resources produced by the Council on Foreign Relations and developed by Jonathan Masters, Associate Staff Writer and Aimee Rawlins. Updated Dec 12. 2011
  • Revolution in the Arab World
    Foreign Policy magazine's issue guide with coverage and articles on a variety of topics related to these recent events.
  • The Tahrir Forum
    A collection of articles maintained by The Cairo Review of Global Affair, a quarterly journal of the School of Global Affairs and Public Policy (GAPP) at American University in Cairo. Its primary aim is to be a focal point for policymakers, officials, academics, experts, journalists, students and others in the Middle East region who follow global affairs.
  • Revolution Resources
    Developed and maintained by historian and professor Paul Sedra
  • AUC guide to Revolutions in the ME
  • Qantara
    The Internet portal represents the concerted effort of the Bundeszentrale für politische Bildung (Federal Center for Political Education), Deutsche Welle, the Goethe Institut and the Institut für Auslandsbeziehungen (Institute for Foreign Cultural Relations) to promote dialogue with the Islamic world.

Your Librarian

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Dr. Ian Straughn
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Joukowsky Family Middle East Studies Librarian
Brown University, Box A, Providence, RI 02912
Office: Rock 103
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