East Asian Studies Research Guide

5. Books, Manuscripts, Archives, and Visual Resources

Books at Harvard

To find books in the Harvard libraries, use the HOLLIS Catalog.

To View Chinese, Japanese, and Korean Scripts on Your Screen:

follow the procedures described in the HOLLIS Catalog Help for Chinese, Japanese, and Korean Scripts (instructions for both Mac and Windows-based machines are provided).

Two Basic Tips for Searching in HOLLIS:

If you're looking for books on a topic, do a keyword search (to get more results, use a ? at the end of a word; it's a wildcard & brings up more books)

If you know the exact beginning of a book title, or the author's name, do a title or author search.

We recommend using Expanded Search in HOLLIS. Why?:

  1. You can find items in a specific library (under "location")
  2. You can items in specific languages
  3. You can find items in a specific format, e.g. audio
  4. You can find items published in a specific year or range of years

Transliteration Tables

ALA-LC Romanization Tables: Transliteration Schemes for Non-Roman Scripts:
These are scanned, full-text, standard transliteration tables for Chinese, Japanese, Korean, and other languages. Links are to PDF files that require the Adobe Acrobat Reader (the free Reader may be downloaded from the Adobe web site).


Books Beyond Harvard

National Central Library (of China)

National Diet Library (Japan)

National Library of Korea

Lib-Web-Cats: provides links to web-based library catalogs throughout the world.

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Archives and Manuscripts

Harvard-Yenching Library: Highlights of the library's collections include several hundred rare Japanese Buddhist scrolls; a group of Dongba (Naxi) manuscripts in pictographic script; an extensive collection of Chinese rubbings; a large set of Korean genealogies and collected writings; significant holdings of early Vietnamese newspapers; the archives of the Lingnan University Trustees (a missionary university in Canton originally known as the Canton Christian College) from 1884 to 1952; missionary works in Chinese, including translations of the Bible in different dialects; Manchu works of historical and literary interest; printings of 18th century Tibetan and Mongolian Buddhist texts; and collections of personal papers, including those of Hu Han-min, an early Kuomintang elder statesman; George A. Fitch, who was for many years associated with the YMCA and other missionary activities in China; and Joseph Buttinger, author and Vietnam specialist. A Tiananmen Archive was established in the fall of 1989 that includes handbills, petitions, and pamphlets distributed by the demonstrators and the government, eyewitness reports, photographs, and videotapes.

Harvard University Archives:The Harvard University Archives is responsible for the institutional memory of the University, including University records and related historical collections.

OASIS: The OASIS database allows users to search a small percentage of the finding aids for archival and manuscript materials found at Harvard University and the Radcliffe Institute. Finding aids in the database are, additionally, linked to the summary description of the collection found in HOLLIS. There are over forty archival and manuscript repositories at Harvard/Radcliffe, all specializing in differing, though sometimes overlapping, subject areas. No one source details the holdings of all; for detailed information consult individual repositories.

Christianity in China : a scholars’ guide to resources in the libraries and archives of the United States / Archie R. Crouch, Steven Agoratus, Arthue Emerson, Debra E. Soled ; foreword by John King Fairbank. Harvard-Yenching Ref (W) BR1285 .C57 1989x
Widener WID-LC BR1285.Z99 C57 x, 1989

Papers of the American Board of Commissioners for Foreign Missions microform
Houghton Manuscript Department MS Ref-35 =Guide
Microforms (Lamont) Film A 467

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Visual Resources

Visual Information Access (VIA): is a union catalog of visual resources at Harvard and Radcliffe. It includes information about slides, photographs, objects and artifacts in the university's libraries, museums and archives. To date only portions of each repository's holdings are described in the online catalog. Where available, thumbnail images are linked to the catalog records.

The Hedda Morrison Photographs of China, 1933-1946, is a unique and notable collection of visual images available at the Harvard-Yenching web site.

The Rev. Claude L. Pickens, Jr. Collection on Muslims in China, is a collection of more than 1000 photos of Muslims and Christian missionaries working among them in Western China in the 1920s and 1930s.

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Page Last Reviewed: September 4, 2008