井底之蛙

3/12/2014

Digital resources

Filed under: — Alan Baumler @ 7:16 am Print

I have been looking through two really useful digital resources lately. One is the Hathi Trust website. They have been digitizing stuff for some time, and the site is now really useful. You can find all sorts of out of print stuff from the 20′s and 30′s (and beyond) and the search features work much better than in Google Books itself. There are also lots of people coming up with collections like Records of the American Colonies that will give you a huge mass of stuff without you having to look for it. Sadly, nobody has done the a collection on the League of Nations stuff that I am interested in.

It is more or less a better front end for Google Books, and it works quite well. This is partially because it is easier to search, has a better interface for reading, and is better integrated with World Cat. It’s still geared more towards English language stuff, but it is a really helpful source.

The other source are the various bibliographies in Oxford Bibliographies. If you are interested in Classical Confucianism would you not want to know what Paul Goldin thinks is the most valuable stuff in the field? John Chaffee on Middle Period China? Kristin Stapleton on Urban Change and Modernity? Alan Baumler on opium?1 This is a type of scholarship that strikes me as being particularly appropriate for the web, since these are supposed to be updated every year.

Sadly, both of these are subscription sites, meaning that you can get some of the functionality just by logging in, but you need to be associated with a major institution to look at things for free. The world of scholarship is changing, but less slowly than one might wish.

 

 

  1. Maybe the last one not so much. []

7/12/2010

JOURNAL WATCH: H-DIPLO JOURNAL AND PERIODICAL REVIEW

Filed under: — C. W. Hayford @ 12:22 pm Print

A major problem nowadays is to somehow find that newly published article in a journal you don’t subscribe to – I miss enough articles in the journals I do subscribe to.

The first resort is the Bibliography of Asian Studies Online, only available by subscription (individuals can subscribe but it’s mostly libraries). BAS categorizes hundreds of thousands of journal articles and chapters in edited volumes going back to 1971. The search makes is easy to find an article if you know what you are looking for.  Good enough.

But it’s harder to come across what you weren’t looking for. The most fun way of dealing with the problem is simple: if you have access to a good library’s journal room, stroll up and down the aisles browsing like a deer for acorns. This is good for at least an afternoon and it gets you out of your office but it’s far from systematic and many of us don’t have that access.

So I have been happy in a major way that H-DIPLO has stepped in to organize Journal Watch: H-Diplo Journal & Periodical Review.

The self-description is “H-Diplo Journal Watch monitors leading scholarly journals for articles of particular interest to scholars of diplomacy, foreign relations, and international history, which are listed below by journal title.” Each quarter they post a  .pdf file with Tables of Contents for every journal you ever heard of in those fields, or at least the ones in English.  You can either browse or search for your words. Coverage begins with the year 2007.

Putting this together can’t be much fun, so kudos goes to our new heroes, Erin Black, editor for journal titles from A-I, and Lubna Qureshi, editor for journal titles from J-Z.

Journal Watch doesn’t solve the problem – there’s just too much coming out and there’s no way to search by key words or topic. But every competent project like this is a big help, and you are sure to find acorns which you would have missed.

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