The First Printed Works of Bengal

By Special Collections, SOAS Library|28th June 2019|Collections & Research|0 comments

This week’s blog looks at a fascinating piece from our collections, likely the world’s earliest surviving text printed in Bengal and Northern India, a copy of the ‘Calendar for the year of our Lord MDCCLXXVIII. Calculated to the Meridian of Calcutta‘ (part of MS 12235, held by SOAS Special Collections). This guest blog is written by Andrew Otis, a Ph.D. student at the University of Maryland, Philip Merrill College of

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Chōjū ryakugashiki

By Special Collections, SOAS Library|28th March 2019|Collections & Research|0 comments

The first edition of this work (abbreviated drawings of birds and beasts), by Kitao Masayoshi (1764-1824) was printed in 1719, but this 1813 edition is still a superb impression (never judge a book by its cover!) A pupil of Kitao Shigemasa, and  later Kano Yosen’in Korenobu, Masayoshi worked as an ukiyoe artist under the name Kitao Masayoshi. He then became official painter to the daimyo of Tsuyama and worked in

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Archives loan to the Hong Kong Museum of History

By Special Collections, SOAS Library|8th November 2018|Behind the scenes, Collections & Research|0 comments

SOAS Archives & Special Collections is very happy to be loaning a number of items to the Hong Kong Museum of History this month, for an exhibition to commemorate the Bicentenary of the Ying Wa College and its’ impact on Hong Kong history. The exhibition runs from 1st November to 5th December 2018, and members of the Archives team are acting as couriers to transport the material safely to the

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Annual Open Day

By Special Collections, SOAS Library|19th October 2018|Behind the scenes, Collections & Research, Teaching & Learning|0 comments

We’ve had quite a busy time of it lately here at SOAS Archives, introducing new students to our search room and some of the treasures of our collections. Our annual Open Day proved a huge success attracting over 100 members of staff and students to come and look at a large display of material and take part in behind the scenes tours of the archive stores. The Archives and Special

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Hausa Popular Fiction at SOAS

By Special Collections, SOAS Library|6th February 2018|Collections & Research|0 comments

This week’s blog comes from Dawn Wright, SOAS subject Librarian for Africa, and looks at the Furniss Collection (E Coll 7), a collection of Hausa Popular Fiction made by Professor Graham Furniss (former Pro-Director for Research and Enterprise at SOAS, University of London) and acquired by SOAS Library in 2008. The collection was amongst a larger selection of Hausa materials from the Library’s collections on display for a recent visit

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Archives & Special Collections Open Day 2017

By Special Collections, SOAS Library|20th November 2017|Collections & Research, Teaching & Learning|0 comments

“Amazing! Diaries, photos, maps, SOAS history – absolutely wonderful!” “The range of material is a real testament to the collections SOAS holds” “Useful to see the range of the collection so I can promote it when training students and speaking to staff” “I have a far less abstract idea of the archives and special collections now and feel increased confidence in visiting” Just some of the great feedback from our

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Memories of Partition – 70 years on

By Special Collections, SOAS Library|14th August 2017|Collections & Research|4 comments

This week’s blog is written by our South Asia Librarian, Farzana Whitfield, and marks the 70th anniversary of the Partition of India. Farzana looks back on her family’s personal experience and memories of Partition. This August marks 70 years of India’s independence from British rule (15th August) giving birth to 2 nations- a Hindu majority India and a Muslim majority Pakistan (14th August). Subsequently there were 3 wars between India

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Tibetan Block Prints

By Special Collections, SOAS Library|25th November 2015|Collections & Research|0 comments

This month’s blog highlights SOAS Library’s rare collection of Tibetan Block prints, which until recently were not available to researchers visiting us here in Archives and Special Collections. Towards the end of last year Charles Manson, Subject Librarian for Tibet, Bodleian Libraries Oriental Section in Oxford, had been cataloguing some Tibetan texts for SOAS Library under the direction of Peter McCormack, then Assistant Director (Acquisitions and Bibliographic Services). We mentioned

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Black History Month 2015: Malagasy art in the archives

By Special Collections, SOAS Library|15th October 2015|Collections & Research|2 comments

To mark Black History Month 2015, this week’s blog highlights the presence of art works by two renowned Malagasy artists, Emile Ralambo and James Rainimaharosoa, in the collections at SOAS Archives, and reflects more broadly on the strength of the Madagascar collections at SOAS, which have attracted the interest of academic researchers from around the world and also the Malagasy community within Britain, through our contact with the Anglo-Malagasy Society.

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Ottoman sources teaching session

By Special Collections, SOAS Library|25th September 2015|Collections & Research, Teaching & Learning|0 comments

This week’s blog has been written by Rosa Vercoe, Projects and Operations Manager at LCSS, London Centre for Social Studies, and co-ordinator of the recent Training Programme on Ottoman and Archival Studies, which took place in London and Oxford, and included a visit to SOAS Archives on 5th August. The LCSS Ottoman Programme is designed to fill the gap for so much-needed short-term courses to help researchers and Master’s /PHD

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