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1The sixteenth issue of Arabian Humanities concludes our special focus on Omani history and society. Our journal is proud to have gathered, over two issues, an impressive and diverse set of authors thanks to the fabulous commitment of three researchers: Marion Breteau, Sterenn Le Maguer and Maho Sebiane who have for long been partners of the Centre français de recherche de la Péninsule Arabique (CEFREPA). While the project had been launched before the Covid-19 pandemic and the end of the five-decade long reign of Sultan Qaboos, it is clear that many of the contributions have been impacted by these two historic events, if only through access to the field in Oman or by providing chronological milestones.

2In the Sultanate like elsewhere in the Arabian Peninsula, issues linked to travel have become an important matter for foreign researchers. The closure of airports due to the pandemic, the health procedures (however legitimate), and even certain specific costs have complicated our collective capacity to have access to the societies that we study. They have limited the possibility to carry out excavations for archaeologists, discover new archives or even interact, more or less formally, with colleagues who work in universities or academic institutions of the Arabian Peninsula and participate in scientific conferences.

3In that context, the CEFREPA’s very existence is more than ever an asset. As a French research center which has always valued its permanent presence in the Arabian Peninsula for more than four decades (first in Yemen, then in Saudi Arabia and finally in Kuwait, and has been able to establish partnerships to send researchers for long periods of time in the United Arab Emirates and in Oman), it remains a most relevant tool to reinforce local partnerships and establish fruitful observation posts. It is largely through mutual trust and patience, long standing relationships and collaborations with institutions and actors of the societies we work on, and most importantly we work with, that fieldwork makes full sense. The publications of this issue, focusing on Oman or other areas, are yet another testimony of a philosophy and methodology that despite various crises and difficulties, continues to structure our journal.

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Makram Abbès et Laurent Bonnefoy, « Editorial », Arabian Humanities [En ligne], 16 | 2022, mis en ligne le 01 juin 2022, consulté le 05 décembre 2023. URL : ; DOI :

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Makram Abbès

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