Southeast Asian Studies

Research Tools

Archival Collections and Primary Sources

Resources that list, or provide access to, materials typically found in archives and used for primary source research. Examples include manuscripts, diaries, letters, first-hand accounts or documentary sources on a subject, person, event or issue.

  • CORMOSEA (Committee on Research Materials on Southeast Asia) Technical Processes Archives, 1980-1990
    This is a collection of historical technical processes files about Southeast Asia cataloging and classification issues collected by CORMOSEA Subcommittee on Technical Processes from 1980-1990. Very useful reference source for Southeast Asia cataloging.
  • The Hann So Collection on Cambodia Archive, 1979-1993
    The materials of this collection focus largely upon Cambodian-American support for the forces opposing the Vietnamese occupation of Cambodia, in the years leading up to the Paris Peace Accords. The collection, which includes a broad range of documents in English, French and Khmer, spans the period 1979-1993, and is especially strong in documenting the development of the publication "Khmer Conscience." This collection's materials consist of approximately 100 monographs on a range of cultural, political, and historical.
  • Interviews and Life Histories of Thai Writers [sound recording], 1975-1976
    A collection of 48 sound tape reels containing the life histories and ideas of Thai intellectuals writing during the 1950's - 70's. Collected by Professor Herbert P. Phillips in 1975-76, the tapes are raw field data and thus are highly variable in length, detail and richness. The speakers are considered as key informants on Thai culture and include: M.R. Kukrit Pramoj, M.L. Boonlua Kunjara Thebayasuwan, Bhuthathaad Bhikkhu, Sulak Sivaraksa, Lao Khamhom, Angkhan Kanlayanaphong, Puey Ungphakorn, Suchit Wongthet, Chintana Yaudsunthormn, Rong Wongsawan, Vasit Dejkhunjorn, Seni Sauvapong and Archin Banchaphaan.
  • Khmer Palm Leaf Manuscripts
    Lpoek Qangar Vatt
    Engraved in Siem Reap, Cambodia, 2001.
    ca. 17 leaves ; 5 x 56 cm.
    In Pali (in Khmer script) and Khmer.
    A Khmer poem on the construction of Angkor Vat.
  • Mahavessantara Jataka
    Engraved in Siem Reap, Cambodia, 2001.
    ca. 288 leaves ; 5 x 56 cm.
    In Pali (in Khmer script) and Khmer.
    This is the canonical Vessantara jataka tale, recounting the Buddha in his last life before rebirth as Samana Gautama (the "historical" Buddha). The text is composed of Pali phrases followed by a Khmer "translation" or gloss. The entire story is told in 17 chapters.
  • Nibbana Sutr
    Engraved in Siem Reap, Cambodia, 2001.
    ca. 108 leaves ; 5 x 56 cm.
    In Pali (in Khmer script) and Khmer.
  • Sangayana
    Engraved in Siem Reap, Cambodia, 2001.
    v. ; 5 x 56 cm.
    In Pali (in Khmer script) and Khmer.
    Buddhist recitation from the Vinaya.
  • McFarland Collection
    Note: Please inquire The Bancroft Library about access to this collection.
    The McFarlands, an important American missionary family, donated a major archive of Siamese materials, dating 1860 - 1950 to the South/Southeast Asia Library. In addition to rare editions of early Thai printed books, the collection includes outstanding photographs of Siam dating from as early as the 1860's, and journals, diaries, notes, and scrapbooks written by family members. A particularly valuable group of photographs was taken at Angkor and other archaeological sites in Cambodia and Siam, some as early as 1878.
  • Swift Family Collection: Buddhist Palmleaf Manuscripts ca. 1782 CE-ca.1898 CE
    23 manuscripts in boxes.
    "Collection includes 19 manuscripts written on palm leaves and 4 written on folded paper. Fifteen of the manuscripts are written in variants of scripts belonging to the family of Laos Tham or Northern Thai scripts; three manuscripts are written in Devenagari script, two in Khmer, and one each in Burmese, Tamil, and Thai. The texts represent a wide range of samples from the Buddhist Tripitaka as well as from the Hindu scriptures. A number of manuscripts from the Abhidhamma Pitaka and the Vinaya (the Mahavagga and Cullavagga sections), as well as Sutta Pitaka (Majjhima-nikaya, Anguttara-nikaya, and Jatakas) represent the Buddhist canonical texts. The Hindu scriptures are represented by, for example, the Visnupurana." --The Bancroft Library
  • Thai Printed Palm Leaf Manuscript
    Phikkhu Ratcharattanobon
    Ruang Thao Kalaket: pen khamklon samnuan Phak 'Isan 22 kan chop / chamra doi Phra Ratcharattanobon.
    Phra Nakhon: Samnakngan Luk So. Thammaphakdi, 2530 [1987]
    22 parts in 1 v. ; 5 x 50 cm.
    A narrative poem about Monk Thao Kalaket of northeastern Thai folklore.


Article Databases and Indexes for Southeast Asian Studies

Listings of articles in journals, magazines, newspapers, etc. Many include abstracts (article summaries). Some include, or link to, the full text of articles.

Atlases, Maps and Gazetteers

Resources that provide maps or tools you can use to generate maps. Gazetteers are geographical dictionaries, giving information about cities, mountains, rivers, etc.

Bibliographies and Subject Guides

Lists of materials in any format (books, articles, videos, web sites, etc.) organized around a common theme or topic.

Biographical Sources

Information about people, including biographical dictionaries, profiles of people or "Who's Whos", personal narratives, and other resources with significant biographical information.

Country Data Sources

Sources of information about specific countries.

  • Library of Congress Country Studies
    A continuing series of books prepared by the Federal Research Division of the Library of Congress under the Country Studies/Area Handbook Program sponsored by the Department of the Army. This online series presently contains studies of 100 countries. Countries that were previously in multi-country volumes are now available individually.

Dictionaries, Thesauri, and Quotations

General and subject specific dictionaries in any language, dual language dictionaries, thesauri, dictionaries of quotations, and acronym lists.

Dissertation and Thesis Sources

Sources for locating masters theses and doctoral dissertations.

Encyclopedias and Almanacs

General or subject-specific encyclopedias, almanacs, and other collections of factual information.

Government Information Sources

Listings of publications and other information published by authority of a governmental body, whether federal, state, local, or foreign, and of intergovernmental organizations, such as UNESCO, etc. Many of these sources include the full text of the items.

Handbooks, Manuals and Yearbooks

Collections of information designed to help practitioners in a specific field or profession, or in the case of yearbooks, to provide annually cumulated information in brief descriptive and statistic form.

Library and Book Catalogs

Listings of books and other items belonging to a particular library or, as with union catalogs, a group of libraries, and usually containing information on the location and subject classification of each item. This category also includes national bibliographies, or lists of all books published in a particular country.


News Databases, Indexes and Web Sites

Listings (may include abstracts or full text) of articles in newspapers, newsmagazines broadcast, news transcripts, or wire services. Also includes web sites of these media, or directories of such sites.


Listings of subject-related associations, learned societies, or professional organizations.

Statistics and Numeric Data

Resources that provide tables of numerical information, or listings indicating where such information can be found.

Last Update: 13 Aug 16:44