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NLS: Overseas Outlook

January to June 2006; Volume 29, Number 1

Cassette player

Patrons requesting a replacement cassette player should send your requests either by air mail letter to Mr. Yealuri Rathan Raj, NLS/BPH, 1291 Taylor Street NW, Washington, DC 20542, or e-mail raj@loc.gov to expedite receiving it.

Shipment of books

Books are sent to patrons as free matter (surface mail), which can take several weeks to months. If books take more than three months to arrive, patrons should first contact their post office and then the overseas librarian. If after contacting the overseas librarian, the books still do not arrive, notify the overseas librarian so they can be reshipped.

Digital talking books

Patrons will see the first digital talking books and players in 2008. Digital talking books will provide high-quality sound and navigation options, and most titles will fit on a single cartridge. Cartridges can play through to the end without being turned over like cassettes. The player will also mark a reader's place and start up in that spot when played again, even when readers switch from one book to another and back again. While 95 percent of books will fit on one cartridge, extremely large ones such as War and Peace will require multiple cartridges.

According to Michael Moodie, NLS deputy director, "Approximately 10 to 15 percent of patrons will receive players in the first year and NLS will provide guidelines for distribution. We need to manufacture a small number of machines initially and continue to test them. Once we are sure that everything is fine, we can accelerate production. In the meantime, the cassette system will still be supported and available."

Twenty thousand digital titles will be available in 2008. Some will be on flash cartridges and all will be available for Internet download, which will launch officially in 2007. For those who wish to have access to the collection before 2008, a significant number of the books will be available for download a year earlier. But the first digital talking books will not be on library shelves until near the time the machines are ready. This group will be only a small portion of the twenty thousand titles.

Online catalog

Patrons who have access to the Internet can search NLS's online catalog using the link "Search the Catalog" at the top of all NLS pages. The home page is at www.loc.gov/nls/index.html. The catalog can be searched by author, subject, and title.

Minibibliography: Islam

Each issue of Overseas Outlook includes a bibliography on a subject that may be of interest to our patrons. This issue features a minibibliography on Islam. To receive any of the books on Islam, complete the order form at the end of the newsletter and return it to the overseas librarian.

American Islam      BR 11063
by Richard Wormser
The author provides an overview of Islam—its origins, history, and practice in America. Includes comments from young Muslims who discuss how they keep their faith amidst a more permissive American society. The author also examines the Nation of Islam, its prominent leaders, and its growth within the African American community. For junior and senior high readers. 1998.

Among the Believers      RC 17364
by V. S. Naipaul
First-hand report on the people of predominantly Islamic nations: Iran, Pakistan, Malaysia, and Indonesia. Naipaul attempts to fathom the overwhelming influence of Islamic beliefs and the rules of faith over secular and political activities in these nations. The answers are gleaned from intense conversations with students, journalists, poets, civil servants, an ayatollah, rustics, and merchants. 1982.

Beyond Belief RC      47472
by V. S. Naipaul
Personal accounts of people encountered by Naipaul during his travels in four non-Arab Muslim countries—Indonesia, Iran, Pakistan, and Malaysia—for five months in 1995. He contends that these stories reveal the effects of Islamic conversion on the national culture. Companion to Among the Believers (RC 17364). 2000.

The Essential Koran      RC 55316
by Ken Kliban
Modern English translation of extracts from the Qur'an including hymns of praise, prayers, exhortations, and recitations illuminating the essence of Islam for the non-Muslim reader. Translation, introduction, and notes by Thomas Cleary. 1993.

The Five Great Religions      RC 9154
by Edward E. Rice
A survey of Buddhism, Hinduism, Islam, Judaism, and Christianity concentrates on the essence of each faith, comparing underlying similarities and differences with the aim of promoting reflection and understanding. For junior and senior high and adult readers. 1976.

A History of God      RC 38536
by Karen Armstrong
The author, a former nun, teaches at the Leo Baeck College for the Study of Judaism and is an honorary member of the Association of Muslim Social Sciences. In her study of the three major monotheistic religions, Armstrong looks at the changing ways people have conceived of God from the time of Abraham to the 1990s. She also addresses mysticism and the notion of the death of God. 1994.

The Holy Qur-an      BR 4007
by Abdullah Yusuf Ali
English translation of the sacred scripture of Islam as revealed to the prophet Mohammed by the Angel Gabriel. 1980.

Islam      BR 13247 and RC 51183
by Karen Armstrong
Author of The Battle for God (RC 51131) among other works, describes the origin and spread of the religion of Islam. Discusses Muhammad and his family, the Crusades, and the powerful Moghul and Ottoman Empires. Explores Islam's divergence into sects and the creation of a modern fundamentalist movement. 2000.

Islam      RC 28736
by John S. Esposito
An introduction to Islam and the Muslim way of life. Examines the origins, historical development, and beliefs of Islam, as well as its contemporary resurgence in the personal and public lives of Muslim societies. 1989.

Islam: A Concise Introduction      RC 18402
by Dennis Roberts
An objective look at the beliefs, attitudes, and customs of Islam. Discusses the life and message of Mohammed, Islamic law and politics, social and family customs, the status of women, business practices, the Islamic states, and the current importance of oil. 1993.

Islamic Fundamentalism in the Modern World      RC 41926
by William Spencer
To diffuse the emotion and confusion he believes exist about the Islamic world, a professor of Middle East history explains the Five Pillars of Islam, the true definition of "jihad," and that only part of the Islamic world practices fundamentalism. The conflict of values between East and West provides context to current and historic events. For junior and senior high and older readers. 1996.

The Koran      RC 7789
by N. J. Dawood
Translated by N. J. Dawood, this earliest work of classical Arabic is the sacred scripture of Islam as revealed to the Prophet Mohammed by the Angel Gabriel. 1975.

The Long Search      BR 04028
by Ninian Smart
A distinguished English theologian examines the living religions of the world. Begins with a concise description of each religion and its basic tenets. Discusses Hinduism, Buddhism, Christianity, Judaism, Islam, the beliefs of individual African tribes, and the religions of China and Japan. 1980.

Major Religions of the World      BR 2537
by Marcus Bach
Brief survey introducing the reader to Hinduism, Buddhism, Zoroastrianism, Judaism, Confucianism, Taoism, Shinto, Islam, and Christianity. 1975.

The Meaning of the Glorious Koran      BR 14075 and RC 44913
by Marmaduke William Pickthall
Translated by Marmaduke Pickthall with explanatory notes, this earliest work of classical Arabic is the sacred scripture of Islam as revealed to the Prophet Mohammed by the Angel Gabriel. 2003.

Mohammedanism      RC 29873
by H. A. R. Gibb
Describes the growth and influence of Islam--a religion whose adherents encompass about one-seventh of the world's population. Includes the life of the Prophet, the teachings of the Koran, cults opposed to the dictates of traditional Mohammedanism, and the modern world's reaction to Moslem attitudes. 1989.

Muhammad      BR 15125 and RC 57345
by Karen Armstrong
Prolific writer on the Middle East examines the religious beliefs of the founder of Islam. Investigates the West's distorted view of the Muslim faith and traces the life of Muhammad. Explains how "Islam shares many of the ideals and visions that have inspired both Judaism and Christianity." 2001 preface by the author. 1992.

Muhammad      BR 10952 and RC 44357
by M. A. Cook
Life of the Arab merchant turned prophet and politician who established a religious state in western Arabia in the 620s. Cook discusses the history of monotheism; Koranic law; the concepts of the hijra, the jihad, and the umma; the importance of Mecca; and the origins of Islam. 1997.

People and Their Religions, Part 2       BR 08043 and RC 30879
by Thomas J. Clarke
Discusses the histories, beliefs, practices and celebrations of Islam, Hinduism, and Buddhism. Includes short quotations from the Koran, the Upanishads, the Bhagavad Gita, and the teachings of Buddha. Easy reading for junior and senior high and older readers. 1990.

Sacred Texts of the World      RC 19968
by Ninian Smart
Survey of the key texts taken from world religions, including ancient dead religions as well as Judaism, Christianity, Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism, Taoism, Confucianism, Shintoism, Sikhism, modern religions, and secular world views. 1983.

Towards Understanding Islam      RC 19783
by Syed Abdul Ala Maudoodi
A concise overview of the faith, attitude, and principles of Islam. The author presents Islamic methods of worship and outlines the Islamic way of life as he reveals the ancient wisdom underlying these practices. 1983.

World Religions      RC 48693
by Margaret Strom
Five British professors outline the tenets, rites, and traditions of Judaism, Christianity, Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism, and Sikhism, emphasizing the view that these religions are relevant to life in the late twentieth century. Summarizes basic information to enable believers and nonbelievers to engage in conversation about the spiritual realm. For senior high and older readers. 2001.

The World's Great Scriptures      RC 09485
by Lewis Browne
Anthology of the world's sacred literature from the ten principal religions: the ancient scriptures of Babylonia and Egypt, Hinduism, Buddhism, Confucianism, Taoism, Zoroastrianism, Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. A preface is provided for each. 1977.

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Posted on 2011-01-11