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Information Literacy

East Asian Studies

Skills for East Asian Studies Majors

The interdisciplinary program in East Asian Studies trains students in various approaches to the study of East Asia.  Through EAS courses in history, literature, art, religion, anthropology, and government, students learn a variety of disciplinary methodologies that  complement each other and amplify the student's understanding of her concentration.

Students will learn how to:

  • Understand the cultural and historical context of texts
  • Show a range of critical thinking across various sources (literary, historical, visual)
  • Integrate varying bodies of knowledge (historical, sociological, literary, and philosophical)
  • Recognize major scholars in their chosen concentration
  • Engage in a research project that involves work with primary and secondary sources and is based on an original topic
  • Create original arguments applying philosophical/theoretical concepts introduced in class
  • Produce a literature review based on a specific research topic
  • Perform basic background research 
  • Use the Five College Library Catalog to locate known items, perform basic subject searches, and access print reserves
  • Use library databases and interlibrary loan
  • Understand what constitutes plagiarism and how to avoid it
  • Appropriately acknowledge print and non-print sources using a standard citation format (e.g. MLA, Turabian, or Chicago

Key Sources for East Asian Studies

Below are some of the important references for research in East Asian Studies in the English language. For a more extensive listing, as well as sources in Chinese, Japanese, and Korean languages please see the Neilson Library Research Guide for East Asian Studies.


Reference Sources Neilson Call Number
  (Ref books on Level 1 North unless otherwise indicated)
Cambridge History of China DS 735 .C3145
Level B West
Cambridge History of Japan DS 835 .C36 1998
Level B West
Modern East Asia: An Introductory History DS 511 .M53 2008
Level B West
Columbia Chronologies of Asian History and Culture ref DS 33 .C63 2000
Cambridge Encyclopedia of China ref DS 705 .C35 1991
Kodansha Encyclopedia of Japan ref DS 805 .K633 1983
Cultural Atlas of China ref DS 721 .B56 1998
Encyclopedia of Contemporary Chinese Culture ref DS 779.23 .E5 2005
Encyclopedia of Contemporary Japanese Culture ref DS 833.5 .E516 2002
Historical Dictionary of the Republic of Korea ref DS 904.8 .N34 2004
Historical Dictionary of North Korea ref DS 933.7 .K55 2003
Korea: A Historical and Cultural Dictionary ref DS 9902 .P737 1999
Historical Dictionary of Taiwan ref DS 798.96 .C67 2007
Historical Dictionary of the People's Republic of China ref DS 777.55 .S835 2007
Chinese History: Manual DS 735 .W695 2000
Level B West

Primary Sources

Reference Sources Neilson Call Number
  (books on Level B West unless otherwise indicated)
Sources of Chinese Tradition (2nd edition) DS 721 .D37 1999
Sources of Korean Tradition DS 904 .S69 1997
Sources of Japanese Tradition DS 821 .S68 2001
Hawaii Reader in Traditional Chinese Culture DS 721 .H338 2005
Japan: A Documentary History DS835 .J37 1997
Columbia Companion to Modern East Asian Literature ref PL 493 .C55 2003
(Level 1 North)

Core Journals

Journal Title Neilson Call Number
  (bound volumes on Level 2 South unless otherwise indicated)
Harvard Journal of Asiatic Studies DS 501 .H3 / online
Journal of Asian Studies DS 1 .J625 / online
Modern Asian Studies DS 1 .M58 / online
China Quarterly DS 701 .C472 / online
Journal of Japanese Studies DS 801 .J7 / online
Journal of Korean Studies DS 901 .J68 / online
Level B West
Korean Studies DS 901 .K854 / online
Level B West
Monumenta Nipponica DS 821 .A1 M6 / online
Positions: East Asia Cultures Critique DS 501 .P67 / online

Other Important Journals

Journal Title Call Number
  (bound volumes in Neilson Level 2 South unless otherwise indicated)
Archives of Asian Art SC Art N 7260 .A68 / online
Early China DS 701 .E17
Level B West
Japanese Journal of Religious Studies BL 2202 .J35 / online
Journal of Chinese Religions BL 1802 .S65 / online
Level B West
Acta Koreana online
Korea Journal DS 901 .K7 / online
Late Imperial China DS 754 .C5332 / online
Ming Studies DS 753 .M594
Modern Chinese Literature and Culture PL 2303 .M63
Twentieth Century China online

Research Databases

The following list provides some important research databases:

Books Access
Five College Library Catalog click here
WorldCat (all dates) click here


Journals/Articles Access
Academic Search Premier (1965+) click here
JSTOR (back issues excluding most recent 2-5 years) click here
Project Muse (current issues) click here
Journal Locator (search for specific journals by title) click here


General Access
Bibliography of Asian Studies (1971+) click here
Historical Abstracts (1956+) click here
MLA International Bibliography (1926+) click here
Sociological Abstracts (1952+) click here
ASSIA: Applied Social Sciences Index and Abstracts (1987+) click here
Abstracts in Anthropology Online (2003+) click here
Anthropology Plus (late 19th century +) click here
AnthroSource (coverage varies) click here


News Articles Access
LexisNexis Academic (coverage varies) click here


Ethical Use of Information

Information literacy demands a high level of understanding about the origin of the information and the integrity of use of that information. Original thought is the objective of the exercise, and creativity is prized. Therefore, it is necessary to be sensitive to the “ownership” of information and ideas. Plagiarism is often the inadvertant result of using information gathered during the research process. It is essential to remember that plagiarism is a serious violation of the College’s Honor Code. When using someone else’s words, ideas, or arguments, students must acknowledge their sources. It is important to identify and attribute all sources of new ideas, except for commonly shared knowledge, such as dates and facts found in encyclopedias and dictionaries. For more information on the College Honor Code, PLEASE CONSULT:

April 25, 2011