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COLLECTION Identifier: MC 847; T-580

Records of the Feminist Arab-American Network, 1981-2015


The records of the Feminist Arab-American Network (FAN) include newsletters, membership lists, audiocassettes, and publicity, correspondence, publicity from other groups including the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee and the Arab Movement of Women Arising for Justice.


  • Creation: 1981-2015

Language of Materials

Materials in English.

Access Restrictions:

Access. The bulk of the collection is open for research. An appointment is necessary to use any audiovisual material.

Researchers must sign a special form for access to #1.22-1.24 (Biographical sketches)

Access to #3.10 is closed until January 1, 2040 (Membership list, Arab-American Lesbian and Gay Network)

Conditions Governing Use

Copyright. Copyright is held by the President and Fellows of Harvard College for the Schlesinger Library. Copyright in other papers in the collection may be held by their authors, or the author's heirs or assigns.

Copying. Papers may be copied in accordance with the library's usual procedures, with the following restriction: personal data submitted by those wishing to join FAN (#1.22-1.24) may not be photocopied or reproduced until January 1, 2040.


1.7 linear feet ((4 file boxes) plus 15 audiocassettes)

The collection contains papers of Carol Haddad and the records of the Feminist Arab-American Network, whose main objectives were to increase public awareness of issues affecting Arab-American feminists, eliminate negative stereotypes of Arabs particularly within the American feminist community, and to work in coalition with other women in Arab countries. The collection contains correspondence, speeches and papers, conference materials; records of the Feminist Arab-American Network including membership lists, publicity, correspondence; publicity from other groups including the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee and the Arab Movement of Women Arising for Justice. The papers were in some order when received and have been further arranged by the archivist. Additional audiocassettes received in 2021 (accession number 2021-M69) were added to the collection in June 2021. These materials, #T-580.1-T-580.15, are listed at the end of the inventory.

The first part of the collection (#1.1-1.20, 1.25) consists of Carol Haddad's correspondence, conference material, subject files, and writings by Haddad. Letters between Haddad and Arab-American feminists she met at the National Women's Studies Association (NWSA) Conference at the University of Connecticut in 1981 discussing the lack of dialogue within the feminist community about anti-Arab sentiments in the United States. Conference material contain correspondence, notes, reports and other documents pertaining to conferences attended by Haddad including the NWSA Conferences in 1981 through 1983. Also included is a document created by Haddad which details the contents of her papers.

Subject files include a letter and petition to free Dr. Nawal Saadawi, an Egyptian writer, physician and feminist imprisoned in 1981, a poem by June Jordan dedicated to Palestinian refugees in Lebanon, and documents including letters to Arab-American feminists before the formation of the Feminist Arab-American Network. Writings by Haddad contain poetry written after meeting with Arab-American feminists at the NWSA Conference in 1982, speeches delivered on the issues and experiences of Arab-American feminists, and a paper on FAN to be published in a book about Arab-American Women edited by Suad Joseph and Michael Suleiman.

The second part of the collection (#1.21-4.18) contains administrative material including letters from Feminist Arab-American Network members, feminist publishers, and biographical sketches of FAN members and supporters. Conference material consists of correspondence, notes, and reports documenting FAN involvement at various conferences including NWSA (1983, 1984, 1986), United Nations Women's Conference (1985), and the Palestine Human Rights Women's Conference (1987). Printed material contains FAN brochures and stationary designed by artist Mary Haddad, Carol Haddad's sister; press releases regarding the formation of FAN in 1983 and a follow-up letter to feminist publishers, press publicity about a travel ban imposed by Israel on Siham Barghouti (1987), and a resolution of the United Auto Workers Union condemning massacres at Sabra and Shatila refugee camps in Lebanon (1982). Although FAN ceased formal operation by 1986 in terms of publishing newsletters, individual members remained active in their respective feminist/Arab-American/scholarly/political communities, and a core group of feminists stayed in contact by telephone for several years thereafter. Haddad and other FAN members contributed to two Arab-American feminist book projects: "Bint Arab" by Evelyn Shakir, and "Food for our Grandmothers" by Joanna Kadi. Haddad met with a group of Boston feminists in 1992-93 who were interested in reviving FAN ceased as a formal organization, but Haddad did not follow through.

In addition, the collection contains audiocassettes (#T-580.1-T-580.15) of panels, workshops, presentations, and interviews, including from the National Women's Studies Association conferences and American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee conventions. The audiocassettes are listed in alphabetical order.

This collection was previously titled, "Papers of Carol Haddad, 1981-2015." It was updated to "Records of the Feminist Arab-American Network, 1981-2015" in November 2020 per request of Carol Haddad.


In 1982 Carol Haddad founded the Feminist Arab-American Network (FAN), an organization of feminists of Arab heritage residing primarily in the United States. FAN was established to give voice to the perspectives of Arab-American feminists on a wide variety of issues, including foreign policy and stereotypical views of Arabs within the American feminist community; it was active from 1982-86. More recently (2003-07), Haddad was a member of a Michigan women's dialogue group: Zeitouna, Arab & Jewish Women Working for Peace and Justice. For most of her professional career, she served as a professor of technology studies and women's studies at Eastern Michigan University, and now holds emerita status at that institution. Her most current writing is on women's use of technology for personal and collective enrichment.

Physical Location

Collection stored off site: researchers must request access 36 hours before use.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Accession numbers: 2015-M80, 2016-M78. 2021-M69 was added in June 2021.

The records of the Feminist Arab-American Network were given to the Schlesinger Library by Carol Haddad, per the suggestion of Dr. Evelyn Shakir, between 2015 and 2021.


Donors: Carol Haddad

Accession number: 2015-M80

Processed by: Amber L. Moore

The following items have been removed from the collection and transferred to the Schlesinger Library Printed Materials Division:

  1. ADC Reports
  2. Al-raida
  3. Arab Women
  4. Association of Arab-American University Graduates Newsletter
  5. Between Our Selves: Women of Color Newspaper
  6. Big Apple Dyke News
  7. Commonwomon
  8. Feminist Arab-American Network
  9. Folio
  10. Institute for Women's Studies in the Arab World
  11. International Supplement to the Women's Studies Quarterly
  12. Islamic and Mediterranean Women's History Network Newsletter
  13. MERIP Reports: Middle East Research and Information Project
  14. Najda Newsletter
  15. Off our backs: a women's news journal
  16. Our Voice, Women for Women in Lebanon
  17. Palestine Focus
  18. Spare Rib
  19. The Arab world review
  20. The WREE-View of Women for Racial and Economic Equality
  21. UPWA North America
  22. Well-Woman Journal
  23. Womanews
  24. Women's voice

Processing Information

Processed: January 2016

By: Amber L. Moore, with assistance from Margaret Dalton

Updated with additional description added: November 2020

By: Amber L. Moore

Updated and additional materials added: June 2021

By: Laura Peimer

Feminist Arab-American Network. Records of the Feminist Arab-American Network, 1981-2015: A Finding Aid
Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America
Language of description
Processing of this collection was made possible by the Pforzheimer Fund for the Schlesinger Library, Sybil Shainwald Fund at the Schlesinger Library, Mary Mitchell Wood Manuscript Processing Fund, and Class of 1956 Schlesinger Library Fund.

Repository Details

Part of the Schlesinger Library, Radcliffe Institute Repository

The preeminent research library on the history of women in the United States, the Schlesinger Library documents women's lives from the past and present for the future. In addition to its traditional strengths in the history of feminisms, women’s health, and women’s activism, the Schlesinger collections document the intersectional workings of race and ethnicity, gender, sexuality, and class in American history.

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