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Unpacking Japanese Studies Library Resources

A course guide for East Asia 537 Methods and Materials Used in Conducting Research in Japanese Studies and other Japanese Studies graduate students.

Using JapanKnowledge

* Kokushi daijiten and Nihon rekishi chimei taikei are available as standalone databases. To use, make sure to log out from other JapanKnowledge screens if you previously used any. (Session control does not work great, and you cannot simultaneously log in to more than one of JapanKnowledge, Kokushi daijiten or Nihon rekishi chimei taikei).

JapanKnowledge is an electronic collection of reference tools (dictionaries, encyclopedias and who's who guides), useful for looking up words, place names, personal names and background information of historical events, well-known works of literature, etc. The collection includes Japanese-Japanese, Japanese/English, Japanese/Chinese, Japanese/Korean, (and other European language) dictionaries, in addition to encyclopedias (two in Japanese, one in English) and other guides and handbooks. It also includes select e-book collections (see next tab).

To begin, click on the "ログイン/Login" button, or simply click on the "基本検索/Basic Search" tab. (The interface language can be switched between English and Japanese by clicking on the link near the top right-hand corner of the screen).

Start searching by typing a word in the search box. (Normally there is a seasonal sample search word entered by default. Just change that to your words). Use the links in the left-hand side column to narrow down your results.

Advanced Search (詳細・個別検索) allows you to combine your search words.

You can also specify a database to search in, and do a more in-depth search in Advanced Search. (Works with select dictionaries, encyclopedias and e-book collections).

The "本棚/Bookshelf" section of JapanKnowledge includes links to e-book collections available with subscription. The following two collections may be particularly useful for Japanese studies research.

  • 新編 日本古典文学全集 (Japanese Classical Literature): an 88 volume set of Japanese classical literature works, from Kojiki to Heian masterpieces to Edo literature, accompanied by modern translation and annotation.
  • 東洋文庫 (Toyo bunko): a 700 volume set of scholarly books and (translated) primary sources for the study of Asia, including South, Southeast and Central Asia. The list of available titles can be sorted/narrowed down by region and/or topic.

All books included in both collections are searchable, but not within individual books or while reading in the e-reader mode. For full-text search, go (back) to the Advanced Search screen, choose the collection as your database and start your search there.