Francophone press of Egypt (programme PFEnum)

Since 2004, the CEAlex has been collecting and digitising copies of Egypt’s French-language press (PFE). These are available at Francophone press of Egypt. More than 2,600 copies in optimised, OCR pdf format are available for free download.

Many copies from our collection of the feminist review L’Égyptienne and the weekly magazine Images have been added to the BNF Gallica platform as part of the Bibliothèques d’Orient portal. They can be consulted via both sources.

Through purchases, donations and loans, we now hold hundreds of issues of dailies, weeklies and monthly magazines, which are currently being processed. All the physical copies in the archives department are listed in the CEAlex library’s periodical catalogue and can be consulted on request.

Without claiming to be exhaustive, which would be a case of wishful thinking given the 705 titles listed in the reference work by J.-J. Luthi1, in addition to the state of conservation of these documents and their dispersal, we continue to actively seek to locate and register more examples. In the absence of copies digitised by the CEAlex, we still hope to offer a detailed description in our online catalogue. At the same time, we hope to provide users with links to documents already posted online by other institutions.

Our acquisition policy is based primarily on the development of partnerships with organisations that hold PFE collections. We are delighted to work with the American University in Cairo (AUC), the Swiss Club of Alexandria, the Dominican Institute for Oriental Studies (IDEO), the French Institute of Oriental Archaeology (IFAO) and the Association du souvenir de Ferdinand de Lesseps et du canal de Suez. We also count many private individuals among our collaborators in this project.

As demonstrated by our partnership with the BNF as part of the Portail des bibliothèques, copies of Egypt’s francophone press are undoubtedly heritage documents that must be preserved and made available to the research community and the general public, in the same way as archives, photos, old postcards almanacs and who’s who directories.

1 J.-J. Luthi, Lire la presse d’expression française en Égypte, Paris, 2009.