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EALC 200: Approaches to the Study of East Asian Cultures (HC/BMC) Spring 2017

East Asian Languages and Cultures 200: Major Seminar: Approaches to the Study of East Asian Cultures (Smith) Spring 2017


Using databases and indexes is an excellent method for finding resources in your topic. The reason for this is because many resources are compiled together in a digital space so that you can search for pertinent information in a variety of locations with a few strokes of the keyboard. Remember to be flexible with your searches: if you can't find something right away, go back and change your search terms. Ask your subject librarian for help with search terms if you get stuck. 

[The main difference between a database and an index is that a database compiles collections of electronic resources (e-books, articles, etc.) so that they are searchable in one interface; an index is a database of citations, often with information about the sources included). 

Identifying Relevant Books

Use the Tripod Books and More catalog to look for relevant titles owned by Haverford, Bryn Mawr and Swarthmore.

The following subject searches are a sampling of possibilities. To find materials on a topic, try doing a keyword search in the Tripod Catalog to find relevant materials and then use the subject headings assigned to those titles to find more books.

art  (20th OR 21st OR modern OR contemporary) (asia* OR china OR chinese OR japan*) (catalog* OR exhibit*)   [Keyword Search]

china history 19th   [Subject Search]

motion pictures  japan  history   [Subject Search sorted for the newest publications first]

korea*  literature translations   [Subject Search]


Tripod - For locating books, journals, and other materials held in the Tri-College libraries. Deliveries within the Trico usually arrive in one or two days. Use the "Request"  button

Worldcat - An important place to look for many materials not owned by the Tri-College Libraries. This combined library catalog contains more than 300 million records describing items owned by libraries around the world. Many of these items are available to you though interlibrary loan.

EZ Borrow and Interlibrary LoanRequest items that are not available in Tripod on this page. Note that E-Z Borrow provides books in 3 to 5 days.  For books not in E-Z Borrow, request though Interlibrary Loan (ILL).  Again materials may arrive in as little as 3 days.   For journal articles not in Tripod, request through Article Delivery.  They will be sent to you by email.

A List of Important Journal Titles

Fundamental Databases

No matter what your topic is the following databases should be searched.

Citation Searches

Usually researchers find more sources by looking at the footnotes in an article or book, but these will always be older than the publication you have in hand.  
Citation indexes like the Web of Science (which includes sections for the Social Sciences, Arts and Humanities, and Science) are set up to search for sources cited in the footnotes of journal articles as soon as they become available.  This allows you to find newer articles which cite the books and articles you already know are key for your topic.  By relying on connections between authors rather than subject words and by moving forward in time, citation searching can open up new avenues of research.


Book Reviews

While almost all of the general and specialized databases have book reviews (and should be searched) Book Review Index is the only database that just indexes book reviews.