Once again, I have the great pleasure of introducing a major, new qualitative leap taken by al-raida. Exactly seven years ago, issue no. 118-119 (“Arab Women Writing in English”) came out, marking a new phase in the evolution of al-raida — an evolution which was then reflected in both content and form. The present issue, though similar in form, is a watershed in the steady, qualitative evolution of this publication, whose beginnings were closely connected with the establishment of the Institute for Women’s Studies in the Arab World (IWSAW) in the early 1970s. From a humble, thin newsletter consisting of a dozen stenciled pages, with the modest and limited purpose of reporting on the activities of the Institute, al-raida has steadily developed into a double-blind, peer-reviewed, interdisciplinary journal whose objective is to spearhead quality scholarship on women rights and women issues in the Arab world.