Category Archives: East Asian Events

General information about things going on at Starr.

Update on the stacks

Following up on our message of September 17 about the flood incident in the library stacks, here are some updates and instructions about access to books and other materials.

The damage is extensive, and a significant number of books were shipped out for treatment. While recovery, repair and cleaning work is in progress the stacks will remain closed.

All items that were shipped out will be marked as unavailable so they can be requested through BorrowDirect and Interlibrary Loan.

For material remaining in the stacks we will start paging services from Saturday September 22 according to the following schedule:

Requests received by 11am (Monday-Friday) will be available by 1pm

Requests received by 6pm (Sunday-Thursday) will be available by 8pm

Requests received by 10pm (Monday-Thursday) will be available the next day 10am

Requests received by 2pm on Saturday will be available by 4pm

We ask that you use the search feature in CLIO for your requests. It is called “Item not on shelf?” and can be found under the Request tab above the catalog record (see illustration).









Stacks and Rare Book Reading Room closed until further notice

Due to a pipe burst on Sunday morning, which resulted in flooding in parts of the Starr Library, our stacks, including access to the Rare Book Reading Room, are closed to allow for emergency work to take place. The main reading room in Starr remains open, as do all reference, consultation, circulation, course reserve, BorrowDirect, and Interlibrary Loan services. Starr Library’s open hours will also remain in place without change.

Over the coming two days, a significant number of affected books are being moved out of Starr for professional treatment. We are investigating options for marking the catalog records for those books, so it will be possible to request any of these titles through BorrowDirect and Interlibrary Loan for anyone requesting access. Additionally, we have brought in multiple dehumidifiers in order to reduce the humidity in the stacks to a level that is safe for the collections that remain. Collections that remain in the stacks will be paged by Library staff upon request until the stacks can be reopened to the public.

As soon as we know more about progress and procedures we will post further information. In the meantime, students and faculty are welcome to contact us at or 212-854-4318, or by visiting the service desk in the main reading room.

We apologize for this major inconvenience, and thank you for your patience while we work with University Facilities to mediate the cause and the impact of this incident.

Library Orientation Fall 2018

Welcome to Columbia to all new students, faculty, and scholars, and welcome back to all returnees!

As we do each year, we are presenting a number of options to get you acquainted with Starr Library, and get you started with your library needs:

Every weekday (except Labor Day) starting Monday, August 27 through Friday, September 7 we offer one-hour orientation sessions, including a tour of the library, with Ria Koopmans-de Bruijn

Come find out how Starr Library works, and what services are available to you. Join us and learn to find your way around!  No advance sign-up necessary.  All sessions start at 4:00 PM at the library’s front desk.

Orientation sessions to introduce resources in Chinese, Japanese, Korean, and Tibetan are scheduled for the last week of September as follows:

Tuesday, September 25, 2:00-3:30 PM, Chinese Studies Resources, with Chengzhi Wang

Wednesday, September 26, 2:00-3:30 PM, Japanese Studies Resources, with Sachie Noguchi

Thursday, September 27, 2:00-3:30 PM, Korean Studies Resources, with Hee-sook Shin

Friday, September 28, 1:00-2:30 PM, Tibetan Studies Resources, with Lauran Hartley

No advance sign-up necessary. All sessions will be approximately 90 minutes, and take place in our Kress Seminar Room.

Staff news: Lauran Hartley at the Rubin Museum

Tibetan Studies Librarian, Dr. Lauran Hartley, moderates a discussion focusing on Tibetan women writers with Tenzin Dickie and Tsering Lama at the Rubin Museum of Art (New York City) on January 3, 2018.

The event launched a new anthology of Tibetan short fiction: Old Demons, New Deities (O/R Books, 2017), from which both writers read excerpts of their works. The editor, Tenzin Dickie, who also contributed one short story and translated others, is an alumnus of the Columbia University School of the Arts where she earned her MFA in Fiction and Literary Translation in 2014.  Tsering Lama earned an MFA in Creative Writing from Columbia in 2013.

New York International Chinese Calligraphy Exhibition

201710 ChineseCaligraphyExhibition

The Second New York International Chinese Calligraphy Exhibition (2017) will be hosted from October 27th 2017 to November 27th 2017 in the C.V. Starr East Asian Library, Columbia University.

The exhibition is organized by a group of organizations including North American Chinese Calligraphers Association; Calligraphy Research and Innovation Center of Jiangsu Province, Nanjing University of the Arts; C.V. Starr East Asian Library, Columbia University, Dragon Summit Foundation, Asian Culture Center, New York Young Entrepreneurs Roundtable, and Zhejiang University of Finance & Economics.

The event will be co-sponsored by New York Chinese Opera Society, I-wing press, UADC NY, Confucius Classroom of Denver, Columbia Confucius Institute, and is supported by Chinese University Alumni Alliance.

The exhibition reception will be held 4:00-7:00 pm, on Friday, October 27, 2017. Registration required for participation in the reception.

Please note that, to accommodate this event, the library reading room will be closed after 3:30 on Friday, October 27, 2017. Public printing and scanning will remain accessible, and stacks will remain open according to the usual Friday schedule.

Introduction to East Asian Library Resources

We are offering special sessions to acquaint you with resources and services in all our Asian languages. Come and find out about all the wonderful resources we have available, learn the basics of identifying and using them, and get up to speed for your next research project or paper.  No sign-up necessary.  All sessions will be approximately 90 minutes, and take place in our Kress Seminar Room (access via level 200 of the stacks).


Tuesday, September 26                  2:00-3:30 PM           Chinese Studies Resources

with Chengzhi Wang


Wednesday, September 27             2:00-3:30 PM           Japanese Studies Resources

with Sachie Noguchi


Thursday, September 28                2:00-3:30 PM           Korean Studies Resources

with Hee-sook Shin


Friday, September 29                     9:30-11:00 AM       Tibetan Studies Resources

with Lauran Hartley



Fall 2017 Library Orientation

For two weeks we will be offering daily orientation sessions, including a tour of the library. Do join us and find out who we are and what services we offer. No sign-up necessary.

Monday, August 28                         3:00-4:00 PM

Tuesday, August 29                         3:00-4:00 PM

Wednesday, August 30                   3:00-4:00 PM

Thursday, August 31                       3:00-4:00 PM

Friday, September 1                        3:00-4:00 PM

Tuesday, September 5                    3:00-4:00 PM

Wednesday, September 6              3:00-4:00 PM

Thursday, September 7                  3:00-4:00 PM

Friday, September 8                        3:00-4:00 PM

All sessions will be led by Ria Koopmans-de Bruijn, Head of Public Services/East Asian Studies Librarian.

More orientation sessions focusing on resources in Chinese, Japanese, Korean, and Tibetan will be offered during the last week of September. More details will be announced closer to the date.

Japanese Book History Workshop

The C.V. Starr East Asian Library, the Department of East Asian Languages and Cultures, the Donald Keene Center of Japanese Culture, and the Weatherhead East Asian Institute will sponsor a special workshop on Japanese Book History.

Guest instructor,Takahiro Sasaki, Professor of Japan classic bibliography of the Institute of Oriental Classics (Shidō Bunko/斯道文庫), at Keio University, in Tokyo, Japan. In this workshop it is his intention to talk about the history of Japanese books and focus on a meaningful interrelation between bindings and its stored contents, including pictorial illustrations and diagrams. From a historical perspective, the early Japanese books have been strongly influenced by China; nevertheless, the origin of early Japanese books has its own unique and independent development that is separate from China and the Korean Peninsula. In China and the Korean Peninsula, the printed publications became the core of books at an early stage of their history, and the formats suitable for print publications have been employed for books. On the other hand, in Japan, because publications were slow to spread as the manuscripts were central and had prevailed for a long time, the early Japanese books developed their originality. In Japan, the different formats for making books, or book-binding techniques, were used concurrently during the same era. The different book-bindings were believed to have been used depending on the purpose of the book and the contents of the book, which were meant to be stored. Therefore, he discusses, in Japan, by paying attention to the binding of the book, one can understand its contents. (Presentation in Japanese with English translation)

Prof. Haruo Shirane, Shincho Professor of Japanese Literature, Chair of Department of East Asian Languages and Cultures at Columbia University gives introduction of the guest instructor, Prof.  Takahiro Sasaki.  Prof. Sasaki is an author and editor of number of books and articles, including, Nihon Koten Shoshigakuron (2016), Shuppan bunkashi no sekai (2015), Keio Gijuku no ōchō monogatari (2014), Nihon no sho to kami (2012), and Karon kagaku shūsei (1999). He also serves as the editor-in-chief of journal Waka Bungakkai.. Co-sponsored by the Department of East Asian Languages and Cultures, Weatherhead East Asian Institute, Donald Keene Center of Japanese Culture, and C.V. Starr East Asian Library.

Event Date and Time: Friday, April 21, 2017, 2:00-6:00 PM

Event Location:  403 Kent Hall, Columbia University

Event Contact Information:  Sachie Noguchi

Tharchin Babu talk, reception, and exhibition

Professor Tsering Shakya (University of British Columbia) will be speaking on Tuesday, February 28, at 4:15pm in the EALAC Lounge (Kent Hall, 4th floor).  His talk is entitled “Tharchin Babu: A Mirror of the World from the Frontier.” Professor Gray Tuttle (EALAC) will serve as respondent, and facilitate discussion.
The talk will be followed by a reception (5:45-6:30pm) to mark the opening of “Transcultural Tibet: Archival Sources at Columbia University,” an exhibition of archival and other rare materials held by the C.V. Starr East Asian Library, including items from the Tharchin Collection. The exhibit will be on display in the Starr Reading Room until June 1, 2017.

TBRC Library & Search-Engine Workshop



MONDAY, DECEMBER 12, 2-3:30pm
Jeff Wallman from Tibetan Buddhist Resource Center (TBRC) will conduct a 90 minute workshop on the use of the TBRC Library website and search engine.  Jeff will introduce the TBRC Library, including the cataloging and digitization program, foundational concepts and data model of the library and a detailed tour of how to use the search engine. The second part of the workshop (60 min.) will include use cases based on student queries and research ideas.  Please prepare questions in advance, if possible.

Jeff is Executive Director of TBRC.  He worked closely with Gene Smith from 2001 until Smith’s passing in 2010. He is the principal architect of the TBRC Library. His background is in Philosophy and Mechanical Engineering. He has been TBRC’s executive director since 2009.

For more information, please contact:  Lauran Hartley, Tibetan Studies Librarian,