University of Hawaii at Manoa Library


Japan Collection


The University of Hawaii at Manoa Japanese Studies has over 40 regular faculty members and nearly 20 affiliated faculty members, making it one of the largest concentrations of Japan specialists in the United States. The UHM Japanese studies is recognized in all major fields, including language and literature, history, performing arts, social sciences, law, and business. The UHM offers approximately 200 Japan-related courses and regularly over 2,000 undergraduate and graduate students annually enrolled in these courses. Including Asian Studies, 15 departments offer degrees with a specialization in Japanese studies.

Degrees offered are BA/MA Asian Studies (Japanese Studies), BA/MA/PhD Anthropology (focus on Japan), MA Pacific and Asian Art, MBA Business Administration (focus on Japan-JEMBA), BA/MA/PhD Japanese Language and Literature, BA/MA/PhD Geography (focus on Japan), MA/PhD Japanese History (BA in Asian History), JD Law (Pacific Asian Legal Studies Certificate), MA/PhD Linguistics (focus on Japanese), MA/PhD Ethnomusicology of Japan, MA/PhD Comparative East-West Philosophy/Asian Philosophy, MA/PhD Political Science (focus on Japan), BA/MA Religion (of Japan), MA/PhD Sociology (of Japan), and MA/PhD Asian Theatre.

On July 1, 2008, the Center for Okinawan Studies (COS) was established as part of the Center for Japanese Studies. Plans call for COS to become an independent center in spring 2009. COS focuses not only on the geographic Okinawa/Ryukyu but also the diaspora of Okinawa, which encompasses the boarder areas of Hawaii and the US mainland, South America, the Pacific Islands, China, and the Japanese mainland. Until the library reorganizes and establishes independent budgets for the Okinawan Studies, the interim policy stands that the resources for COS research needs will be treated as part of the Japan Collection. Under this interim policy, in other words, the region of Okinawa/Ryukyu will be treated as one of Japan's prefectures, and the Okinawan language (Uchinaaguchi) will be treated as one of Japan's regional languages for resource acquiring purposes. Resources pertinent to the diaspora of Okinawa, except to the Japanese mainland, will be coordinated with the American Studies in the Business, Humanities, and Social Sciences Department and with the Hawaiian, Pacific Collections resource selectors.

In support of the outstanding teaching and scholarly research on Japan, the library acquires and makes available Japanese and western language sources about Japan. The Japan Collection supports all levels of research and instruction. Students, instructional faculty, and visiting scholars are the primary users, but the library also serves scholars around the world as well as the local community.


English and Western language publications about Japan are acquired by the subject selector and/or the current imprints buying plan. Acquiring publications in social sciences are closely coordinated with the Business, Humanities, and Social Sciences selectors.

The Hawaiian Collection selectors collect publications on Japanese immigrants in Hawaii written in Japanese, however, duplicates and/or publications relevant to the Kajiyama Collection (one of the Japan Special Collections) are coordinated with the Hawaiian Collection selectors.

Publications on Japanese Diaspora to other world regions are coordinated with the Business, Humanities, and Social Sciences selectors.

Both the library's Government Documents Collection and the Asia Collection acquire English language government publications on Japan. Duplication may occur for publications issued by the World Bank, United Nations and United States Superintendent of Documents.

Recommendations and selections of videotapes on Japan are coordinated with the Wong AV Center selector. The library does not purchase language "tapes" for classroom use or learning Japanese, which are now available in video, CDs, and DVDs. The Language Learning labs acquire such media.


Language: Japanese. Japanese subjects in non-Japanese Asian languages are coordinated with the other non-Japanese, Asia area specialists. For western languages, English is preferred, but texts in other European languages are also collected, especially through the Japanese Literature Publishing Project (JLPP) conducted by the Japan's Agency for Cultural Affairs since 2002.

Chronological: No limitations.

Geographic: Japan is defined as the mainland islands plus the Ryukyus, Kuriles and Sakhalin islands.

Date of Publication: No limitations, but current imprints are emphasized.

Types and Formats of Materials Collected: Printed materials include monographs, government research, white papers, directories, yearbooks, indexes, journals and newspapers. Also collected are maps, conference proceedings, unpublished conference papers, manuscripts, and student papers. Theses and dissertations are acquired selectively. An effort has been made to purchase films. Extensive microfilm files exist for newspapers, source materials on Ryukyus, Okinawa, Hokkaido, Sakhalin and the Kuriles, Japanese Imperial Diet minutes, Japanese company histories, and archival serial titles. CD-ROMs and DVDs include directories, performing arts, and Japanese government's white papers, statistics, Edo hanpon (early woodblock prints) and archival newspaper. Web-based online subscription databases include scholarly and trade journal indexes, Japanese books in print, reference sources, newspapers and biographical information on notable Japanese individuals.

Textbooks: Standard textbooks, including language textbooks, are generally excluded. Literary anthologies and general histories of Japan, often used as textbooks, may be included.

Electronic Format:

Treatment: Nearly all treatments of subjects in the humanities and social sciences are acquired. Juvenile material is excluded except for children's literature that is acquired selectively. Science and technology materials are acquired selectively, including economic aspects of agriculture, public health, gardens and landscape, and cookery, as these are an intellectually integral part of Japanese studies.

Major Microform Holdings: Extensive microfilm files exist for Japan Times, Japan Economic Journal, Asahi Shinbun, Mainichi Shinbun, Nihon Keizai Shinbun, Ryukyu Shinpo, source materials on Hokkaido and Ryukyus/Okinawa, and Minutes of the Upper and Lower Houses of the Japanese Imperial Diet between 1890 and 1947, Japanese company histories, magazines and journals on women and gender.


Gifts and Exchange: Gift items contribute significantly to the Japan Collection. Gift books are especially important to the collection in three aspects: (1) With limited budget, gifts fill the gap of missing and/or damaged volumes, (2) there are many rare and/or special materials in Hawaii because of historical ties to Japan, and (3) personal contacts with donors have a positive impact on the library and benefit the entire university. However, processing gift books is a multi-departmental effort and the library's space availability must be considered before accepting large gift items. It is significant to practice a close cooperative relationship with the Gifts and Exchange Unit, the Development Office, and the Cataloging, Serials, and Preservation Departments.

Special Collections: Since June 1999, all the Japan Special Collections have been accessed according to the rules defined in the Japan Collection Access Policy. The Access Policy will be reviewed and adjusted periodically, or as major changes occur in availability of qualified staff, reading room space, user volume, and copies in different formats such as reprints, microfilms and digital forms. Managing the Special Collections is an ongoing effort. All the items should be properly cataloged, organized, made accessible, and appropriately preserved. The selected major Japan Special Collections are as follows:

The Sakamaki/Hawley Collection consists of over 5,000 items, mostly Ryukyu/Okinawa resources. Among them are over 2,000 items collected by the late English journalist, Frank Hawley. The Hawley Collection is regarded one of the most valuable and rarest materials on Ryukyu and Okinawa in the world. The Hawley Collection was augmented by the collections of two UH professors of History, Shunzo Sakamaki's and Robert Sakai's.

The Kajiyama Collection contains over 7,000 titles of the personal library of the late novelist Toshiyuki Kajiyama. These are general works on Korea, Japanese emigration documents, and Mr. Kajiyama's own publications with his source materials. The Japanese emigration documents and works on Korea complement the library's Hawaiian Collection and general Asia Collection.

The Nan'yo Collection is composed of approximately 700 titles on Japanese research and on former Japanese governmental activities in the South Seas between post-World War I and World War II. Many were transferred to the Library's Pacific Collection, however, many are still housed in Japan Special Collection, Pacific Collection and the general Asia Collection. The majority of the collection is ephemeral materials.

The identification of rare and valuable materials used to educate Japanese-American children in Hawaii has been made (Japanese Textbooks in Hawaii). Most of these materials were destroyed during and after World War II and these may be the only surviving documents of their kind. The Japanese textbooks were donated to the library in the 1970s but were awaiting processing. A small portion of the materials are stored in a secure area of the Asia Collection with the balance stored at the East-West Center's Jefferson Hall through a storage agreement with the library.

The Koji Takazawa Collection is the largest known collection of materials on social movements in post-war Japan. It contains approximately 50,000 items spanning the entire post-war period. These are primarily ephemeral materials. Additional materials were shipped in 2007 and now are organized by the UH Sociology professor. Also the John Roberts Collection (newspaper clippings on Japan right wing movements) has been added to complement with the Takazawa Collection in 2004.

The Oliver Statler Collection is the accumulated materials that were the basis for the scholarly writings of Oliver Statler, most notably, Japanese Inn, Japanese Pilgrimage, and Shimoda Story. The collection consists of materials that also provide insights into his personal and professional relationships, including correspondence, research notes, manuscripts, source materials, brochures, clippings, postcards, maps, art prints, photographs, slides, films, audiotapes and more. The Statler Collection was donated in two increments. The first increment was received in February 1999 and consisted of manuscript boxes 1- 20 along with many of his books. The second increment arrived in May 2002 after Statler's death and consisted of personal and manuscript papers in boxes 21- 62. An additional 109 boxes of books were also included as part of the second increment.


The Library is a member of the Global Interlibrary Framework (GIF) project via the North American Coordinating Council on Japanese Library Resources (NCC). GIF membership enables for UHM patrons to borrow books and obtain journal articles from the member institutions in Japan via the Library's ILL office.

Compiled by: Tokiko Y. Bazzell
Date: July 2008

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