Education About Asia: Online Archives

Web Gleanings: Unusual Asian Sites

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Title: A Virtual Village

URL: http://virtualvillage.wesleyan.edu/

This site combines visual effects and text in an exemplary fashion. One unusual aspect of the “visit” to Arampur is photography produced by village residents. The teaching materials contain suggested questions for students who have explored the site.

Title: Claire Holt Papers

URL: http://rmc.library.cornell.edu/holt/home.htm

As part of the Cornell Indonesian Arts Project, there are approximately 1,780 slides taken from 1930 to 1969. Images are grouped by category, including architecture, theater, sculpture, and painting. One can access the entire database to browse through the collection, or use the search feature.

Title: Digital Colonial Documents (India)

URL: http://www.chaf.lib.latrobe.edu.au/dcd/default.htm

One page at a time, an unusual set of original documents from India has been digitized and can be viewed in html or PDF format. Some documents, most dating from the nineteenth century, contain more than 500 pages. There are census reports, histories, and education reports.

Title: Edo: Art In Japan 1615–1868

URL: http://www.nga.gov/pdf/edoteach.pdf

The National Gallery of Art in Washington DC has compiled this 50- page guide to Edo art. After a general introduction, images and text, grouped by subject matter, such as work, religion, and travel, are presented. Some pages are devoted to teaching activities and further reading.

Title: Electronic Resources in East Asian History

URL: http://iaodb.ish-lyon.cnrs.fr/

There is a lot to look at here. The Virtual Shanghai database alone has more than 2,500 images. There are almost 200 maps of Shanghai and almost 500 items in the historical Chinese postcard collection. The Taiwan bibliography project has more than 5,000 citations; many have abstracts.

Title: Ikebana International

URL: http://www.ikebanahq.org/index.html

This site is produced by the organization Ikebana International. In addition to the basics of ikebana, helpful and attractive pages are devoted to the diverse schools of ikebana.

Title: Japanese Art and Archaeology

URL: http://www.art-and-archaeology.com/japan/japan.html

Although the homepage for the site is quite rudimentary, its real value can be found in the numerous photos of shrines and temples in Japan. In addition, hundreds of titled photos of Buddhist sculpture are arranged alphabetically and can also be accessed through a category search.

Title: Miwa-an: Teahouse Project

URL: http://instruct1.cit.cornell.edu/courses/la694/index.html

With the arrival of landscape gardener Mark P. Keane, a Cornell University teahouse project was undertaken. This site documents, in photos and videos, the building of the teahouse. Articles and links lead to sites that deal with the tea culture of Japan.

Title: Solvyns: Etchings Online

URL: http://inic.utexas.edu/asnic/hardgrave/solvynsonline/pages/Solvyns-Etchings.html

This site has a spectacular collection of colored etchings. The collection more than makes up for its unadorned interface with these highly unique works of art. The etchings are arranged by category, such as modes of transportation, servants, and fakirs.

Title: South Asian Literature

URL: http://www.columbia.edu/itc/mealac/pritchett/00litlinks/index.html

Simply for the colorful, imaginative rendition of an elephant on the homepage, this is a site worth visiting. The number of links to full texts, ranging from classical works to folk narratives, is staggering.

Title: Stefan Landsberger’s Chinese Propaganda Poster Pages

URL: http://www.iisg.nl/~landsberger/

This online exhibition of propaganda posters is extraordinary. At the bottom of the homepage is a menu for approximately 2,000 posters (from 1949 to the present) arranged by subject area. One nice feature is the translation of the slogans when the mouse hovers above the poster.

Title: Sugihara: Conspiracy of Kindness

URL: http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/sugihara/index.html

PBS produced a 90-minute documentary about Chiune Sugihara, focusing on his actions as Consul to Lithuania when he issued visas to refugees fleeing from Europe during World War II. The site has additional information, including transcripts of interviews, video clips, timelines, and a lesson plan for teachers.

Title: The Coins and History of Asia

URL: http://www.grifterrec.com/coins/coins.html

Over 2,000 scans of ancient coins are exhibited on this site; more than 700 come from the empire that at one time encompassed modern Iran, Iraq, and Afghanistan. In addition to a short description, the labels include coin size, date, and material.

Title: Toyota Automobile Museum

URL: http://www.toyota.co.jp/Museum/

This museum, located in Aichi prefecture, has American and European vintage cars as well as Japanese models. Its layout is shown in the virtual tour; by hovering over each icon and clicking, each car can be viewed. A history of car design is also presented in this section of the Web site. The “Possession Car List” tab presents cars and labels alphabetically, by country, and in chronological order.

Title: Urdu Poetry Archive

URL: http://www.urdupoetry.com/

There are hundreds of poems on this site. It is easy to navigate and see all options and offerings. On the right side of the homepage are links to Poet of the Day, Word of the Day, and Topic of the Month. Other sites are noted in the Spotlight section. There is even a handy link to a bilingual English-Urdu dictionary.

Title: International Dunhuang Project

URL: http://idp.bl.uk/

The International Dunhuang Project attempts to catalog and digitize objects from the first millennium A.D. that were found in Silk Road cities in the early twentieth century. While the British Museum is coordinating this project, items are located in museums worldwide. The online version is not easy to navigate. Use the Advanced Search feature to locate a wealth of information, including paintings and maps.

Title: World Art Treasures: Country Slide Library

URL: http://www.bergerfoundation.ch/page2.html

This huge collection of slides pertains to many geographical areas. Two sections cover Asia and South Asia. Although slides from China predominate, there are thousands from other Asian countries. For example, there are more than 2,000 slides from Japan. For jigsaw puzzle fans, one can reassemble the pieces of many slides by clicking on the Puzzle option beneath individual slides.

Title: The Art of South and Southeast Asia

URL: http://www.metmuseum.org/explore/publications/asia.htm

This 168-page online publication presents works of art from the collections of the Metropolitan Museum of Art. One can explore it section by section or browse the entire book.