About Encyclopedia of the Orient
LookLex is a Norway based media house presenting North Africa and the Middle East to a mainly western audience. This we do through 3 main channels; reference material organized into an encyclopaedia, traveller's guides to the North African countries and a basic language course in Arabic.
The owner and editor of LookLex is Tore Kjeilen.
LookLex is founded on an opposition to what we perceive as a Western university-based ideal of presenting the region as positive as possible, in order to balance out an often very negative media image.
LookLex aims at defining the region according to international human rights and ideals of equality and respect for the differences between people. We will never excuse the bad, we will never demonize anything and we will never hide the positive.
LookLex is not culture-relativist, yet we will aim at interpreting cultures, countries and people according to their own ideals. Within this context, "ideals" will not be limited to what representatives of a people or group say.
LookLex will under no circumstance excuse the suppression of women, youth, apostates or homosexuals.
Everything on LookLex is credited, you will always know who writes the articles. No anonymous persons, groups or governments have the access to our content. The author shall always be available through e-mail.
LookLex is not supported by any governments, organizations, individuals or big advertisers. We have no contact with advertisers, we really never know who advertises with us. We have left this in the hands of professional US-based companies. Our advertisers usually buy big packages from large ad companies spread across thousands of web sites; they usually do not know that their campaigns are run at LookLex.
LookLex was originally known as CiAS, and was established in March 1996, and launched all its present major services within the first 6 months: travel guides for North Africa, encyclopaedia for North Africa and the Middle East and a online language course for Arabic. In 1999 the name was changed into LookLex.
Through 2005 will we have about 30 million page views (equals 7 million unique readers) divided between our 11 web sites.