History of the Paris Library

 

History

Founded in Hanoi in 1903, the EFEO (French School of Asian Studies) library bears witness to the manner in which the organisation's centres of interest have evolved over time. During the Indochinese period (1900-1957), the School's mission was to collect all printed books and manuscripts relating to French Indochina and to acquire all important publications on East Asia. The library added to its collections by means of regular purchases, gifts and exchanges, but it also acted as a depositary for books it printed itself. In 1944, the EFEO's Hanoi library contained approximately 80,000 volumes (including manuscripts), half of which were in European languages. At the end of the colonial period, agreements concerning the way in which the EFEO's collections should be shared between France and the three new nations of the former Indochina stipulated that works in European languages should be kept by the School, while works in local languages should go to the new countries. The most important local language manuscripts were then microfilmed. Later, several thousand books, most of them on Southeast Asia, were sent to France to form the core of the School's Parisian library, opened in 1968 at the same time as the Instituts d'Extrême-Orient, which later became the Maison de l'Asie.

Today, the EFEO library contains approximately 100,000 monographs and over 1,700 periodicals (700 of them current). Its collections also include several thousand rubbings and photographs. The library has evolved to keep abreast of the development of new fields of research which now cover a large part of Asia. Historical collections covering Japan and China, and South Asia have been added to those on Southeast Asia. While policy concerning the accumulation and study of documents has remained faithful to the School's core disciplines (archaeology, epigraphy, ethnology, and religions), emerging fields have not been neglected, as is witnessed by joint research programmes run with institutions possessing similar collections (the Collège de France, the Bibliothèque des langues orientales). The exchange of publications with Asian, European, and American universities and research centres constitutes an important part of the acquisitions process.

EFEO libraries outside Paris

EFEO's Paris facility is at the heart of a network of libraries maintained in a number of the School's Asian centres. At present, the centres in Chiang Mai, Hanoi, Jakarta, Kyoto, Pondicherry, Siem Reap and Vientiane possess significant libraries created for and by researchers working on site. The holdings of these libraries feature in the University Documentation System (SUDOC) and the BULAC catalogue. The collections generally respect the specific research interests of the Centre. Buddhism is well represented in the collections at Chiang Mai and Kyoto. Pondicherry possesses major collections in the fields of Sanskrit and Tamil philology, and South Indian archaeology and epigraphy. Siem Reap plays a central role in the activities of the Angkor Conservation Office, while Hanoi has recently made substantial additions to its collections on ethnology and the peoples of the Indochinese peninsular. Jakarta focuses on the social and religious evolutions of the region. The EFEO's Vientiane Centre boasts the only research library in Laos.

 

EFEO News
Fourth International Intensive course in Old Javanese
Yogyakarta, Central Java, Indonesia, 15 July 2018
Aiming to support the training of a new generation of Old Javanese philologists and to stimulate international collaboration in this field, the École française d'Extrême-Orient (French School of Asian Studies, EFEO) and the National Library of the Republic of Indonesia (Perpusnas), with support from the École Pratique des Hautes Études (Paris), PSL Research University (Paris), and the Royal Netherlands Institute for Southeast Asian and Caribbean Studies (KITLV), will co-organize this year, for the fourth time, an international intensive course in Old Javanese.
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Talk by Christophe Pottier ''Archéologie du Grand Angkor: nouvelles données sur l'architecture du paysage''
Paris, France, 22 June 2018
On Friday, 22th, as Christophe Pottier speaks on Archéologie du Grand Angkor: nouvelles données sur l'architecture du paysage.

At 3.30 pm, public sitting in the Grande salle des séances, Institut de France, 23, Quai de Conti, 75006 Paris.
12th DocAsie Day
Paris, France, 20 June 2018
The next DocAsie meetings will take place from June 20th to 22nd in Paris, at the Maison de l'Asie and at the Campus Condorcet (Maison des Sciences de l’Homme Paris Nord). For these 12th Days, the focus will be on the treatment of sound funds as well as the presentation of precious and / or specialized funds.
The provisional program is available HERE.
Registrations are closed.

(Manuscrit rituel bouddhique MS.SL.59 dit « collection de mudrās », Népal, XIXe siècle, collection Sylvain Lévi, Institut d'études indiennes du Collège de France)
Paris EFEO Seminar
Paris, France, 18 June 2018
Monday 18th June Arlo Griffiths (EFEO) speaks on Histoire sociale des brahmanes en Inde et les modes de transmission du corpus védique.

11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. (Free admission)
Maison de l'Asie, First floor salon, 22 avenue du Président Wilson, 75116 Paris
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New publication