Nagwa Mahmoud el-Haj Mousa holds a diploma and a master’s degree in records and libraries. She is now preparing to receive her PhD in records. She has worked at the National Records Office, participating in managing records and archives, developing plans and preparing studies and programs. She also lectured in training courses in libraries, information and archives at the Archives Training Centre of the National Records Office and some other entities that organize special courses in this field. She published a number of papers in some periodicals, appeared in interviews on radio stations and TV channels, and represented the National Records Office in a number of activites in the Sudan and abroad.
Abstract title: Arabic-Script African Manuscripts in the Sudan: A Descriptive Study
Manuscripts are a key source of first-hand information at heritage institutions, documents centres and archives. There are many Arabic-script manuscripts at various official and unofficial heritage institutions in African countries.
This paper looks at manuscripts in general, including their definition, beginnings, the topics they cover, their significance at heritage centres for scholars in the field of manuscripts, their organisation, and their editing.
It explores Arabic-script African manuscripts, their nature, geographic spread, general features and the topics they cover.
Since the paper is about Arabic-script African manuscripts in the Sudan, it explains the beginnings of manuscripts in the Sudan, places where they are preserved as well as the topics, times and places they cover. The paper dedicates one section to the manuscripts collection at the National Records Office of Sudan, explaining how they are collected, acquired, preserved, processed, organised and displayed.
The paper focuses on Arabic-script manuscripts held at the National Records Office of Sudan, indicating their numbers in the warehouses, describing them in detail, explaining whether they are originals or copies, how they were acquired and the topics and times they cover, and referring to the names of some of their authors and their role in spreading Islam in the region. It also deals with Arabic-script manuscripts at other libraries, such as the University of Khartoum library and the International University of Africa library, and in other non-Arabic-speaking regions of the Sudan that preserve this kind of manuscripts.
The paper also covers the importance of digitising manuscripts and keeping them in electronic form, which will benefit the manuscripts themselves and researchers using them, facilitate manuscript management, promoting manuscripts on a large scale, and helping researchers recognize Arabic-script African manuscripts among millions of manuscripts in manuscript databases.
The paper concludes by presenting findings and recommendations.