مجلة البحوث التاريخية | Journal of Historical Research

Libya’s foremost research journal for history, in its broadest conception, is the مجلة البحوث التاريخية (Journal of Historical Research), published by the Libyan Center for Historical Studies.* Since 1979, the journal has consistently published articles by Libyan scholars, as well as several well-known European scholars writing in Arabic, on a very broad array of topics. In many cases, in fact, there is little or no research published outside of Libya on these topics, and the journal therefore offers extremely valuable insight into the range of possibilities for research as well as useful starting points for those who can read Arabic. Unfortunately, it is difficult to come by in European or American libraries (in London, the SOAS library has many of the issues)—a goal for the appropriate authority in Libya would be to make back issues available online. The website of the Center shows issues from 2013 as being the most recent. Although it seems not to have been updated for some time now, later issues are not known to me.

*The Center was previously called مركز جهاد الليبيين ضد الغزو الايطالي للدراسات التاريخية (The Libyan Resistance against the Italian Invader Center for Historical Studies), later shortened to مركز جهاد الليبين للدراسات التاريخية (The Libyan Resistance Center for Historical Studies).

Publications of the Italian-Libyan Academic Collaboration

A number of years ago, the Istituto Italiano per l’Africa e l’Oriente (المعهد الايطالي لافريقيا و الشرق) and the Libyan Studies Centre in Tripoli collaborated to publish a series entitled Fonti e Studi per la Storia della Libia (مصادر و دراسات لتاريخ ليبيا). Three volumes appeared in print:

  • Modern and Contemporary Libya: Sources and Historiographies. (Fonti e Studi per la Storia della Libia 1). Edited by Anna Baldinetti. Rome: IsIAO 2003.
  • La Libia nei manuali scolastici italiani (1911-2001). (Fonti e Studi per la Storia della Libia 2). Edited by Nicola Labanca. Rome: IsIAO 2003.
  • Tripoli bel suol d’amore. Testomonianze sulla guerra italo-libica. (Fonti e Studi per la Storia della Libia 3). Salvatore Bono. Rome: IsIAO 2005.

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Unfortunately the collaboration seems to have not continued, at least in published form. But all three books are very worthwhile collections for those looking for thoughtful and unique perspectives on the colonial period in Libya.