Since its establishment, Women’s Studies has developed and continuously expanded its Library, specializing in books, periodicals, audiovisual, and other materials in both English and Arabic. Holdings include materials issued by major international and Palestinian institutions such as the Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics and UNDP, as well as a total of 6,262 books, of which 2,151 are in English and 3755 in Arabic.
Books & Documents
Among these are reference works, bibliographies, and documents (in hard copy or on CD-ROM) on Palestinian and other Arab women and on gender relations in Palestinian and Arab society, as well as in other areas of the Global South and the rest of the world. Documents include local and international research and policy papers, reports, theses, and statistical references, in both English and Arabic. Some library holdings are specifically related to issues of gender and development; others concern feminist theory; and still others concern selected areas such as social policy, education, and economy. Still others, including audiovisual materials, are concerned with gender planning and training.
Academic Journals, in hard copy and online/
The Library subscribes to 54 journals, 31 in English and 23 in Arabic. The Institute has been granted access to the International Development Research Center (IDRC) databases as long as it is an IDRC partner, and Birzeit University Main Library offers full-text journals by subscription in a number of databases, and has free access to some others.
Films and other audiovisual materials
The Library and also holds a small collection of audiovisual resources. With the increased production of films by and about women in the Arab world, and the establishment of the Palestinian NGO Shashat, which is devoted to both making and collecting women’s films, acquiring films for use with our students is something we are hoping very much to be able to do.
University branch libraries
We also have access to the university’s branch libraries – in community health, development, and international studies, and law. This past summer, we coordinated the acquisition of materials for the master’s program with the Law Center Library, with the result that more legal books are available to our students. In addition, the library which belongs to the university’s Sociology Department has been housed in the same room in our new building as our Women’s Studies Library, and all books from that library are to be catalogued and shelved with our own.
Institute holdings are accessible electronically through the Birzeit University Main Library catalogue, in the section entitled “Ritaj” in the University website http://www.birzeit.edu
Library Hours & Location
Monday through Thursday, and Saturday: 8:00 AM to 4:00 PM
The Library is located on the bottom floor of the new Institute of Women’s Studies building, located at the north end of the Birzeit University campus.
The Institute continues to develop its library, and is encouraged by the increasing volume of users coming from other departments at the University and from outside the University. The Women’s Studies Library employs a full-time librarian and one assistant. Other help comes from part-time student volunteers as they are available.
Librarian Samar Anton Eskander Yaser