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Research Quick Start Guides

Asian American Studies

Encyclopedias | Bibliographies | Indexes | Biographical Sources | Statistics | Other Libraries | Internet Resources

Stanford University Libraries contains many titles on the historical and contemporary experience of Asian Americans, making it an excellent place for students conducting research in this area. Because of the interdisciplinary nature of Asian American Studies, relevant titles are often dispersed throughout the general collection depending upon subject matter. Use Socrates, Stanford's online catalog, to locate books and other materials. Use the library's print or electronic indexes to locate journal articles and published papers.

Encyclopedias and Handbooks

Encyclopedias, Handbooks, Dictionaries, etc. can provide useful descriptions, overviews, and lists of recommended reading on a topic.

Asian American Chronology (Green Library Information Center E184 .O6 A8258 1996) From 11,000 BC to 1995 AD. This volume covers significant social, political, economic, cultural and professional milestones in Asian American history.

Asian American Encyclopedia (Green Library Information Center E184. O6 A827 1995) This six volume set contains more than 2,000 entries ranging in length from brief definitions to 4,000 word essays, covers topics such as arts, education, government and politics, science and technology, sports and other fields. Also includes significant events as well as shifts and countershifts in U.S. immigration policy.

Asian-American Almanac (Green Library Information Center E184. O6 A824 1995) Looks at more than 20 Asian American ethnic groups experiences, from immigration pattern to family life to employment.

Atlas of Asian-American History (Green Library Information Center E184 .O6 A89 2002 F)

Dictionary of Asian American History (Green Library Information Center, HASRC & Stacks E184.O6 D53 1986) contains essays on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders; a section of significant laws, people, events and organizations; and a chronology.

Encyclopedia of Minorities in American Politics (Green Library Information Center E184 .A1 E574 2000; also available on ebrary - download reader before using ebrary for the first time) "entries cover people, events, court cases, movements, and organizations that have shaped the political struggles of African Americans, Asian Americans, Latinos, and Native Americans."

Gale Encyclopedia of Multicultural America (Green Library Information Center & Bender Room E184. A1 G14 1995) This two volume set contains over one hundred essays addressing a distinct ethnic, ethno-religious, or Native American group in the United States. Entries include Asian Indian Americans, Cambodian Americans, Chinese Americans, Hmong Americans, Japanese Americans, Korean Americans, Pakistani Americans, Samoan Americans, and Thai Americans.

Harvard Encyclopedia of American Ethnic Groups, 1982 (Green Library Information Center & Stacks E184 .A1 H35) provides lengthy articles on several Asian American groups. The articles include bibliographies.

Japanese American History : an A-to-Z Reference from 1868 to the Present (HASRC & Stacks E184 .J3 J3355 1993) Consists of three major parts: a narrative historical overview, a chronology of Japanese American history and dictionary entries pertaining to the history of Japanese Americans.

Reference Library of Asian America (Green Library Information Center E184 .O6 R45 1995) This three volume set looks at various topics, such as different Asian American groups, significant documents, interracial relations, civil rights, religion, theatre, sports, and speeches.

Refugees in the United States (Green Library Information Center E184 .A1 R43 1985) includes chapters on Chinese from Southeast Asia, Hmong, Khmer, Laotians and Vietnamese. A bibliography indexes predominantly journal articles.

Strangers from a Different Shore: A History of Asian Americans (Green Library Stacks & Bender E184 .O6 T35 1998) A narrative history of richly diverse stories of Japanese, Chinese, Koreans, Filipinos, Asian Indians, Vietnamese, Cambodians, and Laotians how have come to the United States during the past one hundred and fifty years.


Bibliographies can help you identify books and articles on a subject. They may include short descriptions called annotations. There are many that deal with African Americans. In Socrates look for Topics with the subheading --Bibliography, or use the Bibliographic Index (Green Library Information Center Z1002.B594) or browse near the ones listed below.

Asian American Literature: an Annotated Bibliography (Green Library Information Center Z1229. A75 C47 1988) Lists works by writers of Asian descent who have made the United States or Canada their home. Also includes authors of mixed descent, as well as authors who may not be permanent residents but who have written specifically on the experiences of Asians in the U.S. and Canada. Includes a section of literature by non-Asians about Asians and Asian Americans.

The Asian American Media Reference Guide, 2nd ed. (Green Library Media-Microtext Center E184.O6 A79 1990), an annotated list of films and videotapes about Asia and Asian Americans. Indexed by title, subject, producer/director, category, ethnicity, and distributors.

Asian American Studies: An Annotated Bibliography and Research Guide (Green Library Information Center Z1361.O7 K56 1989) is the most comprehensive and current bibliography of Asian American literature in the social and behavioral sciences and humanities.

South Asians in North America: An Annotated and Selected Bibliography , 1988 (Green Library Stacks DS503 .C35, no.14) covers period from 1900-1986.

Periodical Indexes

Indexes (in paper and electronic formats) can help you identify articles in magazines, newspapers, scholarly journals and other resources. Those restricted to the Stanford community are marked with the icon. For other indexes see the Databases and Green Library CD-ROMs lists.

Academic OneFile general index to over 13,000 journals and magazines with links to fulltext if available.

Alternative Press Index (Green Library Information Center Z7164 .S66 A5 1969 +, Web 1991+) Indexes periodicals that present a more politically "left" or controversial point-of-view.

Alt-PressWatch provides fulltext of "a collection of newspapers, magazines and journals of the alternative and independent press."

Amerasia Journal (Green Library HAS Journal Collection; earlier in Stacks E184 .O6 A5) annually publishes a comprehensive bibliography. Some of the topics covered are: "Contemporary Politics and Social Movements, "Culture Literature, and Folklore," "Family Relations," and "Identity and Assimilation" among other topics. This bibliography is usually published in the December issue of the volume.

America: History and Life (1964+) covers U.S. and Canadian history. Includes abstracts

ERIC various ways to search for works in education

Essay and General Literature Index (1985+ available on the Web; 1900+ shelved at Green Library Information Center AI3.E752) an author/subject index to essays published in collections, with particular emphasis on materials in the humanities and social sciences.

Ethnic Newswatch (1960+) full-text database of newspapers, magazines and journals (in English or Spanish) of the ethnic and minority press.

MLA Bibliography (1963+) literature, languages, and folklore. Paper volumes for 1921-1963 are shelved at Green Library Information Center Z7006.M64.

PAIS International, 1972+ ; 1915+ volumes are shelved at Green Library Information Center Z7163.P9) indexes selected books, government documents, and periodical articles on contemporary public issues and the making of public policy.

Psycinfo (1887+) indexes and abstracts books, periodicals and other literature in psychology. Also Available from OVID.

Social Sciences Index, 1974+ (Green Library Information Center AI3S62) Author/subject index to periodicals in fields such as anthropology, economics, family studies, geography, international relations, law and criminology, political science, policy studies, psychology, social work, sociology, and urban studies.

Sociological Abstracts (1963+) (1952-1973 shelved at Green Library Information Center HM1.S67) Indexes articles concerned spectrum of social behavior (individuals, small groups, large organizations, communities, institutions, and societies). Covers sociology and related disciplines such as anthropology, criminology, law, social psychology, urban studies, race relations, demography, and education.

Women Studies Abstracts (1972+ shelved at Green Library Information Center Z7962/W65; 1984+ also in Women's Studies International on the Web) indexes feminist and scholarly books and periodicals.

Women's Studies Index (1989+ shelved at Green Library Information Center HQ1180.W68; also on Web as Women's Studies on Disc) indexes a wide range of periodicals.

Biographical Sources

Biography Resource Center Use many of the Gale fulltext biographical products, plus The Complete Marquis Who's Who

Chinese American Portraits: Personal Histories 1828-1988 (Green Library Stacks E184 .C5 M195 1988 f) by Louise Leung Larson. A collection of biographies gathered from interviews and archival research of Chinese Americans from all walks of life.

Dictionary of Literary Biography Yearbook (Green Library Information Center PS129 .D521 1980+ ) Contains a biographical sketch of Maxine Hong Kingston.

Distinguished Asian Americans : A Biographical Dictionary (Green Library Information Center & HASRC E184 .O6 D57 1999) "features biographical profiles of 166 distinguished Asian Americans who have made significant contributions to American society."

Notable Asian Americans (Green Library Information Center E184 06 N67 1994; also part of Biography Resource Center) Contains 250 biographical sketches on noteworthy Asian Americans, both living and deceased, from all fields of endeavor.

Who's Who among Asian Americans (Green Library Information Center Ready Ref. Shelf E184 .06 W46 1994/95) Lists contemporary Asian-American leaders from all occupations and ethnic and cultural subgroups.

Statistical Information

Asian and Pacific Islander Population in the U. S. from the U.S. Department of the Census. These tables present March 1994 Current Population Survey (CPS) data on the demographic, social and economic characteristics of the Asian and Pacific Islander population in the United States. Topics covered include geographic distribution, marital status, educational attainment, family and household type, labor force status, occupational distribution, earnings, family income, tenure, and poverty status. Data are presented for the United States and the West region.

Statistical Abstract of the United States (Green Library Information Center Statistics Shelf HA202 .A483) provides a wealth of statistical information from a variety of government and non-governmental sources.

We the People: An Atlas of America's Ethnic Diversity (Green Library Information Center E184 .A1 A479 1988 f) surveys people from Africa as well as the Caribbean. Excellent demographic maps.

Statistical Record of Asian Americans (Green Library Information Center Statistics Shelves E184.O6 S73 1993) brings together data gathered by a wide variety of government, non-government, and Asian/Pacific Islander sources.

Other Libraries

Green Library Media and Microtext Room , including the "Papers of the U.S. Commission on Wartime Relocation and Internment of Civilians," "Oral History Transcripts" of early Japanese Americans in Fresno County, California, and selected immigration documents. In addition to Green Library, researchers may want to consult other libraries on campus, especially Hoover (which has special collections on the Japanese American internment during World War II), Education, and Law Libraries, as well as the library in the Asian American Activities Center .

Other Internet Resources

This page was orginally created by Rose Adams.


Last modified: August 28, 2009

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