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Chinese Center Donates Collection to East Asian Library

In recognition of the library’s reputation for quality, international outlook, and excellent service, the Chinese Information and Culture Center in New York will donate a collection of 1,000 volumes to the Rutgers University East Asian Library. A presentation ceremony will be held on Thursday, May 2, 2002 at 10:30 a.m. in the Remigio U. Pane Room, on the first floor of Alexander Library.

The collection consists of many valuable research oriented books and journals. A centerpiece of the collection is a limited edition copy of the Four Treasures of Chinese Literature, a compilation of all collected books in China prepared on the order of Emperor Ch’ien-lung in 1772. This compilation took 15 years to complete and involved over 4,000 writers, editors, and researchers. It encompasses over 3,470 titles.

The Chinese Information and Culture Center (CICC), located in midtown Manhattan, is the New York area's largest public resource center for Chinese culture and contemporary life in the Republic of China on Taiwan. The Center presents regular performances of puppetry, Chinese opera, Chinese music, and other performing arts from Taiwan in its Taipei Theater. The Center’s Taipei Gallery exhibits contemporary and traditional Chinese painting, sculpture, and decorative arts. The Center's library contains over 30,000 volumes in both English and Chinese, as well as an international selection of current periodicals and journals. The Center also publishes the bimonthly CICC Currents, which details Center programs as well as featuring articles on Chinese culture and life in today's Taiwan.

The Rutgers East Asian Library, located on the second floor of the Archibald S. Alexander Library in New Brunswick, encompasses a sizable collection of monographs, serials, and microfilms. The library's main collection currently has a total of 112,861 volumes, of which 104,504 are in Chinese, 6588 in Japanese, and 1,769 in Korean. The Chinese collection is particularly well-developed, with extensive holdings in dynastic histories, collectanea, and local gazetteers. The Chinese collection is particularly strong in history (the Ming-Ching and Republican periods), classics, literature, religion, and philosophy.

Special features of the East Asian Library include:

  • A unique collection of photographs of various locations and individuals in China that were released from Xinhua News Agency of Beijing. The black and white photographs (about 1,100) cover the 1960s and 1970s.
  • A microfilm collection consisting of over 4,000 reels of the text from rare books from the National Central Library of Taiwan.

Rutgers’ East Asian Library is distinctive as perhaps the only broad-based, publicly accessible library of Chinese materials serving Middlesex County, whose Chinese population the 2000 Census identified as the largest growing ethnic community. The collection to be donated to the East Asian Library may be used not only by college students but also by the parents and children of local families that are known to frequent the library.

For more information on the East Asian Library, or on the May 2, 2002 presentation ceremony, please contact Library head Nelson Chou by email at nchou@rci.rutgers.edu or by telephone at 732/932-7161. The East Asian Library’s website can be viewed at: http://www.libraries.rutgers.edu/rul/libs/east_asia_lib/east_asia_lib.shtml.

Posted April 19, 2002