Posts filed under ‘ebooks’

Taiwan Resource Center for Chinese Studies

Since 2014, Leiden University Libraries are hosting a ‘Taiwan Resource Center for Chinese Studies‘. This resource center, established by an official agreement between the National Central Library in Taiwan (NCL) and the Leiden University Libraries (UBL) signed in 2014, will be the platform for Taiwan to promote and share both Taiwan and China studies with the faculty, scholars and students of Leiden University. The agreement, aimed to strenghten academic ties, resulted in a generous donation of books on all kinds of subjects relating to Chinese studies, and provides access to a wealth of digital Chinese resources.

The TRCCS book collection (here’s the list) which is continuously updated, can be found on dedicated bookshelves inside the East Asian Library Reading Room. All books are available for browsing and borrowing. Apart from printed works, staff and students of Leiden University have access to many electronic databases, hosted by the National Central Library in Taipei.

Here are two important ones:

  • Linking Publishing ebooks collection 聯經電子書 Lianjing dianzi shu:
    A collection of 270 ebooks on various topics including history, literature, economy, and arts and lifestyle. Although downloading these PDFs is not possible, all ebooks can be read from the screen. Access from within the University campus.

For a full list of available databases go to the TRCCS website and browse the ‘Resources’ section. There are a lot of interesting databases, of which below a small selection :

  • Rare Books and Special Collections 古籍與特藏文獻資源. Integrated search box for all following collections:
    • Union Catalog of Rare Books Database 中文古籍聯合目錄 | National Central Library’s rare books catalogue.
    • Digital Images 古籍影像檢索. Tick the box saying 是否有影像 on the search screen, then click”瀏覽影像” top left to view scanned books from the NCL, the Library of Congress, the C.V. Starr East Asian Library, and others.
    • Genealogy Catalogue 臺灣家譜聯合目錄 | Search through the genealogy catalogues of 11 Taiwanese libraries and institutions.
    • Collection of Rubbings from Metal and Stone 金石拓片資料 | Scanned collection of almost 4,000 Chinese rubbings and epitaphs. Click on the image to view full screen or to print.

The most important of these databases will in due time be added to the Database list for Chinastudies in the library catalogue.

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July 7, 2015 at 12:54 pm Leave a comment

ACLS Humanities E-Book collection

The Leiden University Libraries have acquired a new set of e-books on the platform ACLS (American Council of Learned Societies), the ACLS Humanities E-Book collection or ‘HEB’ in short.

There are about 4000 e-books from the humanities, mostly area studies and historical studies. Several titles are already in use on the East Asian Library teacher shelves (i.e. Stevan Harrell’s Cultural encounters on China’s ethnic frontiers) and there are many other well read titles on China, Japan and Korea, so it is interesting to have a look! I found 70 books for China and 50 for Japan and Korea.
All titles can be found through the university catalogue as well.

Search the full title list here. If you would like to stay up to date with new titles, follow their blog ACLS humanities e-book.

Books on China:

January 16, 2014 at 12:33 pm Leave a comment

EBL e-books


At Leiden University we have been buying more and more ebooks through the large ebook platform EBL or ‘Ebook Library’. For Chinastudies there are now over > 150 available ebooks. All students and staff of Leiden University can access our list of ebooks through EBL using your username and password – and the good news is you don’t have to come to the library to read them – it works just as well from home.
All books can be found through the library catalogue.

Through ‘View Details‘ one can have a look at the book’s chapters and general setup, each book can be browsed for about 5 to 10 minutes, after which time you will have to decide to ‘borrow’ or Read Online. This is like putting a personal loan on the book, but fortunately this doesn’t mean someone else can’t read this book at the same time as you!

Read the book from the screen through ‘Read Online (Available)‘. One could also Download the book as PDF or ePub and read it with Adobe Digital Editions after applying for an Adobe ID. This takes a one-time effort, after which you can download your preferred format to your phone or tablet and read it with the BlueFire app.

You can either borrow the book for 1, 2 or 3 days and how many days you want is completely up to you.
However, we’d rather have you borrow lots of times for shorter periods than borrowing for longer times and not really getting to read your book. It’s not that we expect you to be a super fast and efficient reader, but the EBL platform has a set amount of ‘borrowing credits’ for each book each year – we hope it is not used up unnecessarily. Happy reading!

July 1, 2013 at 1:17 pm Leave a comment

Trials to dictionaries

Until May 22, 2013, we will have a free trial for the online version of two famous dictionaries. One is the 汉语大词典 Hanyu da cidian, the second the 康熙字典 Kangxi zidian. The Hanyu da cidian is a very large, 12 volume Chinese-Chinese dictionary with over 20.000 entries, compiled by a dedicated group of editors in 1986. It is one of the largest dictionaries from the 20th century.
The second dictionary is the Kangxi dictionary, which is a dictionary made by commission of the Kangxi emperor of the Qing dynasty in 1710 and completed in 1716. This 24-volume dictionary of more than 47.000 entries is a must for anyone reading classical Chinese.

CNKI, who also hosts our popular China Academic Journals database, and the China Masters dissertations database, has put these two dictionaries together in one large search screen. Search by character – type in directly, or use pinyin to pick your character from an alphabetical list. It will take you to the first three lines of the dictionary entry, and then one can click through after typing in the password leiden/leiden.

Feel free to use this trial to your advantage and if you like it, let us know!

May 2, 2013 at 8:13 am Leave a comment

Brill’s Encyclopedia of China Online

Brill’s Encyclopedia of China Online is based on the original 1000 page reference work on China (available in the East Asian Library reading room at SINOL. L 10 E 18) and has its main focus on China from the mid-19th century to the 21st century.

The encyclopedia consists of approximately 450 articles on a variety of topics, written by top scholars around the world. Articles, or entries, are grouped alphabetically, and can be linked to directly.

Brill’s website states there will be additions of statistical data and other new content added each year. Articles are thorough and use pinyin for Chinese terms – there are no Chinese characters anywhere in the text (that said, there haven’t been any Chinese characters in the printed version of the encyclopedia either…) Illustrations are scarce, and if you can find any (try ‘painting‘) they happen to be in black and white (!), differing from the illustrations in the printed encyclopedia.

That all put aside, Brill’s Encyclopedia of China Online is a good source for reliable information on the history, geography, society, economy, politics, science, and culture of China. At the end of each article there is a bibliographical list for further reading.

March 7, 2013 at 1:09 pm 2 comments

Asian Studies E-Books Online

From today, Leiden University has full access to Brill’s Asian Studies ebook collection 2007-2012, part of Brill’s platform for ebooks and journals called Brill Online books and journals.
Leiden University has always had a strong focus on Asian studies, and Brill’s Asian ebooks cover this subject perfectly. Many of Brill’s recent academic works on China, Japan and Korea are part of this collection, and some well known earlier publications are incorporated too.
All fulltext and searchable publications are available for download (PDF): either from inside our university, or after logging in from home with ULCN name and password.

Searching is easy by using the search screen and then restricting by subject or time of publication; it is also possible to search for chapters in books.

Here is the full list of the Asian Studies E-Books Online through Brill :

Books to be found in this large collection include, for example, Erik Zürcher’s The Buddhist Conquest of China; Van Crevel’s Chinese Poetry in Times of Mind, Mayhem and Money; Kevin M. Doak’s A History of Nationalism in Modern Japan; and Remco Breuker’s Establishing a Pluralist Society in Medieval Korea, 918-1170.

December 17, 2012 at 9:20 am 2 comments

ProQuest dissertations and theses FULLTEXT

[update: Leiden University have had a trial to ProQuest in March 2012, but it has now been extended to the full version of the available fulltext of all dissertations and theses on ProQuest from September 2012!]
Leiden University not only has access to ProQuest’s dissertations and theses abstracts and index, but has now purchased the fulltext of the ProQuest dissertations and theses database (in easy downloadable PDFs).

There are about 2.9 million dissertations and master theses in the ProQuest database (90% from the US), most of the fulltext dissertations available are from 1997 and later.

Have a look by yourself through the following link: ProQuest dissertations and theses. Or have a look at some examples, like Chinese art; Chinese film; Japanese poetry; Korean literature, …

Try the advanced search screen if you already know what you are looking for. You can search for the dissertations of known universities there, too – (including Leiden) although most of the non-US dissertations sadly have only abstracts and no fulltext.

Of course these searches don’t often get you what you’d expect, or searching for something might not lead to quick results, but when you browse around for a while and try to restrict your search results by choosing a time period in the lower right corner or adding or distracting some keywords, results might improve considerably.

Dissertations and theses are available for PDF download. Enjoy this great source for research!

September 24, 2012 at 7:54 am Leave a comment

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this blog is set up by Alice de Jong, former subject librarian of sinology at the East Asian Library, part of the Asian Library
Encyclopedia Brittannica: China