Southeast Asian Studies: Intro

Map of SEA



Southeast Asian Studies Librarian

Virginia Shih
120 Doe Library
510-643-0850 ext. 1

Introduction to the Southeast Asian Studies Collection

Southeast Asian studies at Berkeley cover the interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary areas of humanities, social sciences, and sciences of the Southeast Asia region. Over thirty courses in Southeast Asian studies are offered in fourteen departments during the academic year. The Center for Southeast Asia Studies promotes and enriches Southeast Asian studies through its lecture series, annual conference, outreach and academic activities.

About the Collection

Collection Description

The Southeast Asian collections at Berkeley rank first statewide, and they are among the top collections for Southeast Asian studies nationally. The comprehensive collections include materials from and about the six insular countries (Brunei, East Timor, Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, and Singapore) and five mainland countries (Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, Thailand, and Vietnam) in the region. They are the strongest research collections on the West Coast, with the emphasis on social sciences and humanities in western and vernacular languages, covering both prewar and postwar periods of Southeast Asia. The collections are quite influential in earlier western language publications on Burma, the Philippines, and Indochina since the pre-World War II period. The Library has an excellent run on annual reports of the colonial administrators in Southeast Asia, including departmental and other agency reports on Burma. Dutch colonial literature on Indonesia is well represented, including all the major journals. In particular, the Indonesia Collection is one of the most comprehensive Southeast Asia collections in this country. Berkeley has had a strong interest in the Philippines that has resulted in comprehensive library collections on the American and Republic periods.

The Library has been collecting Southeast Asian vernacular materials in Burmese, Chinese, Hmong, Indonesian, Khmer, Lao, Malay, Tagalog, Tamil, Thai, and Vietnamese to support our teaching and research in Southeast Asia Studies. The Library of Congress Cooperative Acquisitions Program on Southeast Asia (CAPSEA), formerly known as the Public Law 480 Program in Jakarta, Indonesia, has played a critical role in acquiring both English and Southeast Asian vernacular materials in the humanities, social sciences, and sciences for Berkeley since 1964. To further enhance our Southeast Asian vernacular collections, The Library also collects materials from commercial vendors as well as through gift and exchange programs with Southeast Asia counterparts and acquisition trips.

Due to space restrictions, the South/Southeast Asia Library includes only the reference collection, a small non-circulating collection of basic works on the Southeast Asia region, and a collection of high-use newspapers and journals. The rest of the Southeast Asian collections in both printed and non-printed formats, over 400,000 holdings, is housed in Doe and Moffitt libraries, subject specialty libraries, and affiliated libraries on the Berkeley campus.


Electronic Journals

Journals in electronic form, available online either individually or as part of a larger collection. E-Journals only available for the Berkeley campus are listed in Pathfinder. The California Digital Library maintains a list of e-journals available to all UC libraries.


Purchase Recommendation Form

If you'd like to recommend an item to be added to the collection, please use the Purchase Recommendation Form.

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