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Comparative Literature: A Guide to Library Resources: Asia and
the Middle East

This guide is selective and limited to items held by the Cornell University Library, with an emphasis on those resources held in the Reference collections of Olin, Kroch, and Uris Libraries

Reference Sources

DICTIONARIES, ENCYCLOPEDIAS, GUIDES AND HANDBOOKS

Arab Women Writers: a Critical Reference Guide, 1873-1999, Ashour, Radwa, et al., eds. ,translated from Arabic by Mandy McClure. Cairo ; New York : The American University in Cairo Press, c2008. Olin Reference PJ7525.2 D4313 2008 and online
Contains signed essays by scholars, one for each country, providing overviews of that nation's literary history, genres, and major women writers. Roughly half the volume is an alphabetical dictionary of writers, arranged by name. Also provides a bibliographies of works translated into English and French, and a listing of primary sources.
Dictionary of Oriental Literatures. 3 vols. New York: Basic, 1974. Kroch Asia Reference PJ 31 D55; also Kroch Asia stacks
Each of the three volumes of this set focuses on literatures from a particular region of the Orient East Asia, covering the literatures of China, Japan, Korea, Mongolia, and Tibet; South and South-East Asia, covering the literatures of India, Pakistan, Bangaladesh, Ceylon, Nepal and the countries of South-East Asia; and West Asia and North Africa, covering the ancient literatures of Mesopotamia and Egypt and all the countries of Western Asia and Maghreb. The literature of Black Africa has been omitted as beyond the scope of the publication. There is no index, but a list of national literatures followed by their respective major works appears at the end of each volume.
Encyclopedia of Arabic Literature. 2 vols. London: New York : Routledge, 1998. Olin Reference PJ 7510 E53x 1998+
Covers "the most important authors, works, genres, key terms and issues in Arabic literary tradition -- classical, transitional, and modern" (Intro.) and consists of concise, signed entries arranged alphabetically, most listing references for further reading. Cross-referenced. Appendices include a glossary, chronological tables, and an Arabic to English transliteration table.
Encyclopaedia of Indian Literature. Datta, Amaresh, ed. ,6 v. New Delhi : Sahitya Akademi, c1987-1994. Kroch Asia Reference PK 2902 E56+
Signed articles arranged alphabetically discuss major Indian authors writing in 22 languages, their works, literary styles and terminology. Bibliographic references included. Indexed.
Far Eastern Literatures in the 20th Century: a Guide. Klein, Leonard S., ed. ,Harpenden, Herts, England: Oldcastle, 1988. Rev. ed. Kroch Asia Reference PL491 F21 1988
"Based on the Encyclopedia of world literature in the 20th century."
A Guide to Eastern Literatures. Lang, D.M., ed., London: Weldenfeld and Nicholson, 1971. Kroch Asia Stacks PJ 307 L26; also Library Annex
Each of the 15 chapters surveys a particular Oriental literature: Arabic, Jewish, Persian, Turkish, Armenian and Georgian, Ethiopic, Indian and Pakistani, Sinhalese, Indonesian and Malaysian, Chinese, Tibetan, Mongolian, Korean, Burmese and Japanese. Most chapters cover historical background, main trends in the literature and individual writers; a bibliography completes each chapter, and a detailed index enhances the complete volume.
Indiana Companion to Traditional Chinese Literature. Nienhauser, William H., Jr., ed., 2v. Bloomington, Ind. : Indiana University Press, c1986-1998. Kroch Asia Reference Z3108 L5 I39+ and Library Annex PL2264 .I39 1986
Covers Chinese literature to 1911, and contains more than 500 signed entries, some of considerable length, on authors, works, and literary schools. Each includes a bibliography of editions, translations, and criticism. Indexed by name, title, and subject. General bibliography and chronology also provided.
Kodansha Encyclopedia of Japan. 9 vols. Tokyo: Kodansha, 1983. Plus suppl. 1986. Kroch Asia Ref DS805 K76 and Library Annex
Represents a ten-year effort by Japanese and foreign scholars to compile the "first comprehensive encyclopedia" about Japan in English. Over 9,000 entries (the vast majority under 500 words) are contained in this eight-volume encyclopedia. A one-volume index completes the set. Coverage includes philosophy, history, science, politics, economics, literature and the arts, food and clothing from both a historical and a contemporary perspective. A letter-by-letter system of alphabetization is used and the romanization system is Hepburn or Standard. The encyclopedia is illustrated with black and white photos, charts and maps. It should be the single most useful source on Japan for the non-Japanese reader.
Modern Arabic Literature. Allen, Roger, camp. and ed., New York: Ungar, 1987. Olin stacks PJ 7538 M68 1987 and online
This handbook "brings together a large selection of criticism about modern Arab writers." (Preface) It includes the "most important" authors and works in the 20th century Arabic literature. The critical wrings were culled from a larger collection of critical works on each author. An index to critics and a "Works mentioned" section are included at the back of the book.
Modern Arabic Literature and the West. Badawi, M.M., London: Ithaca, 1985. Olin Stacks PJ 7538 B13
A collection of eleven essays reflecting the relationship between Arabic literature and the West (e.g., "The City in Modem Egyptian Literature," "The Arabs and Shakespeare").
Reader's Guide to Japanese Literature. Rimer, J. Thomas, Tokyo: Kodansha International, 1988. Kroch Asia stacks PL 715 R57 R28
A guide to major works of Japanese Literature which have been translated into English. It is intended as a "rough road map for the uninitiated" for identifying both the classical and modern masterpieces of Japanese Literature, including novels, poetry and drama. Each entry gives a brief outline of the work, sets it in the context of the time it was written and provides information on the availability of translations.

SELECTED INTERNET RESOURCES

Asian Studies WWW Virtual Library
Broad in subject scope, the site lists links to internet resources pertaining to Asia (including the Middle East), by region and country. Most country sites have a 'Literature' subdivision.
Cornell University Library Middle East and Islamic Studies Collection
Serves as both a guide to the CU Library collection and subject guide to other online resources. Contains links to sites in Arabic literature, Persian literature, and Turkish literature.

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