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Undergraduate Japanese Studies Resources: Finding Articles

A guide for undergraduates doing primarily English-language research on Japanese studies, with a limited knowledge of Japanese.

Bibliography of Asian Studies

The Bibliography of Asian Studies contains information on works of scholarship related to Asian studies from 1971 to the present. It no longer contains information on individual monographs. All works are in English.

Newspapers in English

Japanese Newspapers


JAIRO searches institutional repositories across Japan, which are digital archives of research at individual universities and other institutions. The content from IRs is largely downloadable for free, and JAIRO allows you to limit your search to full text materials only. JAIRO has an English interface, but much of the content is in Japanese. It's a great way to find research not published in traditional academic journals, but may be the only research done on a given topic so far.


This section covers subscription databases at Penn that include article citations, abstracts, newspaper articles, dissertation citations and full text ebooks.

To find specific journals (which may not be in JSTOR, EBSCO, or ProQuest - such as those in Project MUSE), search for the journal name in Franklin using the "Journal Title Keyword" search. Then click on the journal name, and connect to the e-resource through the link provided on the right-hand side of the Franklin record for the journal. If the journal is not available online, you can request the article from LIBRA. If it is not owned by Penn, you can request it via InterLibrary Loan.


JSTOR is a full-text archival collection of roughly 1000 journals, usually dating back to their first issue. It typically excludes the most recent 1-5 years. Articles are available for viewing online or downloadable as PDFs.

EBSCO MegaFile

EBSCO MegaFile includes academic journals, popular magazines, and newspapers, often with full-text. You can limit your search to "area studies" to narrow to  journals and other publications that are more likely to be related to Japan and Asian studies. In addition, searches can be limited by type of publication, to scholarly, peer-reviewed journals only, or to only articles with linked full text.


ProQuest provides several useful databases for looking for citations and some full-text research papers. These include Dissertations and Theses Fulltext, which allows you to search for dissertations and master's theses and, in many cases, download a PDF of the dissertation. Periodicals Index, meanwhile, searches thousands of periodicals (including academic journals), with a focus on humanities and social science. Both of these are excellent ways to broaden your subject-based search, or in the case of dissertations, find a copy of research you're already looking for.

Historical Abstracts

Historical coverage of the world from 1450 to the present (excluding the United States and Canada). It includes over 2,000 journals published throughout the world including key historical journals from many countries, as well as hundreds of journals in the social sciences and humanities. 1974- present. Updated three times a year.

Subject Guide

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Rebecca Mendelson
527 Van Pelt-Dietrich Library Center

Google Scholar

Google Scholar is helpful for finding a wide variety of citations that may be downloadable from multiple databases, such as JSTOR or Project MUSE, without having to search each database individually. It also links to articles, dissertations, and other materials located in institutional repositories and available for free download, as well as to Google Books, which may have book previews or even free downloads for public domain books. In addition, Google Scholar provides "related citations" for many sources, linking to related scholarship with citations and download links. It is especially strong for finding download links and citations for articles whose titles and authors you already know. It can also be helpful for finding more research by authors you are already interested in.

Use the Penn link here to have Google Scholar provide PennText links for all available articles - it logs you in via Penn's system. Going straight to Google Scholar does not provide this service.

Japanese Articles

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