Christian Arabic on the Web

The growing field of Christian Arabic studies, which has been especially invigorated by the work of Sidney Griffith, especially The Church in the Shadow of the Mosque: Christians and Muslims in the World of Islam (Princeton, 2008), now enjoys an expanding web presence as well.  Given the restricted size of this discipline, The North American Society for Christian Arabic Studies is a professional organization which seems to be based entirely on its website, without membership dues.  Still, it has many of the same benefits as dues-based organizations (there are notices of upcoming conferences and events), as well as additional resources, including a large, member-generated bibliography of recent publications, arranged by year and dating back to 2000.  Any interested reader of the website can post a biographical notice with research interests.  Is this the wave of the future, at least for the smaller sub-disciplines of ancient studies?

The Gruppo di Ricerca Arabo-Cristiana, which is based in Rome, has a similar web profile, with a set of member biographies and information on the eleven volumes published so far in their series, Patrimonio Culturale Arabo Cristiano (PCAC), which are mostly Italian translations of works by major authors such as Theodore Abū Qurrah.

Finally, there are several useful online resources for the still-standard, five-volume reference work, Georg Graf, Geschichte der arabischen christlichen Literatur (Vatican City, 1944-1953).  Although it is still in copyright and not available online, Meryle Gaston at New York University’s Bobst Library has created this webpage to help beginning users navigate its complexity, including a description of its contents and layout, and the all-important question of how to use its index.  A table of contents for volume 2 (Arabic Writers to the Middle of the 15th Century: likely the most interesting volume for readers of this blog), is found on this webpage in Roger Pearse’s site.

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