Newsletter No. 55 (January 2010)

News from the Asian Studies Research Collection, Monash University Library

Aline Scott-Maxwell

Senior Asian Studies Librarian
Monash University Library



Indonesian Historical Collection launch                                           
In 2009, Monash University Library’s large print collection of Dutch-language books, journals and pamphlets was installed in a dedicated space in the Matheson Library and renamed the Indonesian Historical collection. The collection consists of over 6000 volumes dating mainly from the 19th to early-mid 20th centuries. Its strengths are in economics, statistics, government, law, agriculture, mission history, culture and civilization. The collection was built up in the early decades of the Library’s history, especially the 1960s and 1970s, through the collecting activities of the founding Southeast Asian Studies Librarian, Bob Muskens, and her successor, Helen Soemardjo, in conjunction with many Monash academics from the Centre of Southeast Asian Studies. In the 1990s, most of the 18th to early 20th century titles were moved into the Rare Books Collection. Space issues in Rare Books led to the decision last year to relocate these materials – together with additional related titles from the general collections – to a specially designated area, jointly managed by the Rare Books and Asian Studies Research Collections. Though still a closed access collection, the new location will allow limited browsing and so, hopefully, facilitate greater use of the collection. The newly named and relocated Indonesian Historical Collection was inaugurated on October 30 with a small display and a viewing of the collection for Monash and interstate academics who were attending a seminar on the Dutch East Indies.

Korean collection activities
Korean studies librarian, Jung-Sim Kim, was invited to give a presentation at the UNSW National Strategic Conference : Korean language and Studies Education in Australia in November. She was the only librarian in attendance and spoke about Korean online resources for teachers of Korean. Jung-Sim also attended the First Kyujanggak Workshop for Korean Studies Librarians from Overseas, 24-28 August, in Seoul, Korea. Reports of both of these events can be found elsewhere in this issue of the Earlga newsletter. The Korean collection was also expanded through various donation programs from the Pusan National University Library, the National Library of Korea, the National Assembly Library and the Korea Foundation.

Hana Kim, Korea Studies Librarians at the East Asian Library, University of Toronto, spent two days at Monash in discussions about the Korean collection and Monash Library’s digitisation and data management programs. Other visitors in the last six months included two Cambodian-American author/film-makers, who consulted the Norodom Sihanouk Archival collection and the David Chandler Cambodia collection, a party of Chinese administrators from Liaoning province, China, a party of Indonesian functionaries from the National Narcotics Board, and a large contingent of Indonesian academics from Islamic universities.


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