January 18, 2006 Mary-Jane Deeb Named Chief of the Library's African and Middle Eastern Division

Press Contact: Audrey Fischer (202) 707-0022

Mary-Jane Deeb was recently appointed chief of the African and Middle Eastern Division of the Library of Congress. She has served as head of the division’s Near East Section since 2004.

“We are very pleased to have Dr. Deeb as the new chief of the African and Middle Eastern Division,” said Carolyn Brown, director for Collections and Services. “She provides the Library with an amazing depth and breadth of experience and knowledge of the regions under the division’s purview. She also has extensive experience working with scholars, librarians and high-level officials from the regions covered by the division.”

Mary-Jane Deeb joined the Library of Congress staff in 1998 as the Arab world specialist in the African and Middle Eastern Division. In 2003 she led a Library of Congress team to Baghdad to assist with the reconstruction of the National Library and Archives of Iraq. In 2004 Deeb accompanied Librarian of Congress James H. Billington to Iran visit the National Library and Archives. She has worked with the Library’s Office of Scholarly Programs to foster Islamic studies at the Library of Congress, which has included creating Rockefeller Fellowships in Islamic studies, inviting distinguished senior scholars on Islam, holding a series of symposia on “Globalization and Muslim Societies,” and organizing numerous other programs, lectures and conferences on the Muslim world.

Deeb received a Ph.D. in international relations from the School of Advanced International Studies of Johns Hopkins University in Washington, D.C., and bachelor’s and master’s degrees in sociology and anthropology from American University in Cairo.

Prior to joining the Library of Congress staff, Deeb was editor of The Middle East Journal, director of the Omani Program at American University in Washington, D.C., and director of the Algeria Working Group at the Corporate Council on Africa. She has also taught at Georgetown University and at George Washington University.

During the 1980s, she worked for organizations such as the United Nations Economic Commission for Western Asia, UNICEF, Amideast and the U.S. Agency for International Development in Beirut. She was a U.N. observer for the June 1997 Algerian legislative elections. She has appeared on NewsHour with Jim Lehrer, John McLaughlin’s “One on One,” CNN, ABC World News Tonight and CBS Evening News. She has been quoted in the New York Times, the Washington Post, Time magazine, the Christian Science Monitor, Los Angeles Times and other news media.

Deeb is the author of more than 100 articles and a book titled “Libya’s Foreign Policy in North Africa.” She is the co-author with M.K. Deeb of “Libya Since the Revolution: Aspects of Social and Political Development” and co-editor with Mary E. King of “Hasib Sabbagh: From Palestinian Refugee to Citizen of the World.” She is currently working on a book titled “Understanding Muslim Arab Culture.”

The African and Middle Eastern Division was established in 1978 as part of a reorganization that combined the Near East Section, the African Section and the Hebraic Section. Together they cover some 70 countries and regions from Southern Africa to the Maghreb and from the Middle East to Central Asia. For more information on the division and its holdings, visit the African and Middle Eastern Division at www.loc.gov/rr/amed.


PR 06-018
ISSN 0731-3527