Case study: Japanese books restoration (2024)

Barros, Elisa

In a previous presentation I introduced my studio and how I work with damaged Japanese books. I showed different possibilities of treatments and materials that restorers use in the restoration and/or conservation of books. This time, I want to focus my research and my practices on a very specific problem. As is very often the case, we find holes made by insects in our collections of Japanese books. I will present a case study with 6 different possibilities (such as adding fibers manually, adding fibers by machine, by doubling, etc.). All these possibilities will be demonstrated, analyzed and discussed in terms of feasibility in relation to the conservation of books/collections.

Echoes of Edo in the University of Oregon's Japanese Votive Slips Collection (2024)

McDowell, Kevin

The University of Oregon's Special Collections and University Archives (SCUA) has a large and rare collection of Japanese votive slips (nōsatsu or senjafuda), consisting of over ninety albums with thousands of individual images. The slips, with the names and addresses of pilgrims printed on them, were originally used in early modern Japan to paste on shrines and temples as a way of earning religious merits. This ostensibly religious practice, however, was, almost from the start, mixed with aspects of play and, over time, an exchange element was added as nōsatsu aficionados began to commission artists, carvers and printers to produce elaborate, polychrome artworks solely for the purpose of exchanging and collecting at regular meetings and not for commercial uses. This collection is of unique cultural interest as it offers a glimpse into an art form that was exclusive to the networks of nōsatsu groups that engaged in pasting and exchanging slips in the late Edo, Meiji, Taishō and early Shōwa periods (ca. 1850-1930).

Two Hosho-shis that Sankin-kotai created (2024)

Ishikawa, Yoshie

The presentation will demonstrate through paper research that there are two types of hosho paper with different folding methods, sizes, and thicknesses, and will reveal that Roju-Hosho was issued less formal when Daimyo was in Edo. The presenter will report on examples of Roju-Hosho preserved in the Yamauchi family (山内家), the lord of the Tosa-Han (土佐藩), and the administrative documents of the Hiroshima-Han.

Challenges of Japanese Local Mingu Materials and Efforts to Open Up and Share the Information (2024)

Kawabe, Sakiko

This presentation will introduce and discuss the challenges of preserving and utilizing Japanese local mingu materials and the efforts to open up and share information on them. Everyday objects, such as tableware, utensils, tools and equipment for livelihood, clothes, adornments, and furniture made and used through people's daily lives, are called "mingu" in Japanese folklore and museums. They are significant materials through which we can interpret the culture and changes of people's living in a certain time span or space. Therefore, mingu, especially those made and used before the drastic changes in people's lifestyle during the high economic growth after WW2, were collected throughout the country and preserved in each region to protect them from disappearance.

National Diet Library Services to Provide Materials as Digital Data (2024)

Matsuzaki, Hiroki

The National Diet Library (NDL) has several services that provide patrons with digital data, including access via the Internet to materials whose copyright protection has expired and a Digitized Contents Transmission Service available both to Libraries and to Individuals. In addition, we are planning on allowing users to download digital materials in PDF format as part of our Remote Photoduplication Service.
The Digitized Contents Transmission Service for Libraries/Individuals is a service that allows digitized materials that are within the copyright protection period but are difficult to obtain due to being out of print or other reasons to be viewed or printed out at a library that has been approved by the NDL or at a personal terminal. In April 2024, it became possible for overseas libraries to apply for a usage category that allows printing out.
The Remote Photoduplication Service (PDF download) is a service that provides users with digital data (PDF files) of a portion of a copyrighted work created by scanning or other means. Although there are some exceptions, many of the materials in our collection are available for use. With the revised Copyright Act that came into effect in 2023, it became possible to provide patrons with digital copies via the internet, including by email.
This time, we will mainly introduce recent developments in the Digitized Contents Transmission Service for Libraries/Individuals and the features of the Remote Photoduplication Service (PDF download) service.

Offering consultation services for preservation and restoration of historical materials (2024)

Shibutani, Ayako ; Takashima, Akihiko ; Hirano, Akira ; Yamaguchi, Satoshi ; Hirasawa, Kanako

For historical paper-based materials, we are conducting research to analyse their components using natural scientific methods, predominantly optical techniques, to provide fundamental data for restoration. Recently, we analysed the components and constituents of historical paper-based materials through archaeology and cultural heritage science, material structure analysis, botany and genome analysis, and data science methods. In addition, efforts are underway to standardise scientific information such as numerical data and integrate it into our database. This presentation introduces HI’s restoration and conservation techniques for historical paper-based materials. In collaboration with the EAJRS Conservation/Preservation Working Group, it establishes a consultation service aimed at assisting European institutions facing challenges in conserving and restoring historical paper-based materials, while also contemplating the global dissemination of conservation techniques in this age of digital connectivity.

Overall picture of digitization and textization of the National Diet Library (2024)

Inoue, Sachiko

In recent years, the National Diet Library (NDL) has been engaged in the large-scale digitization of Japanese publications and the creation of their text data. The current goal is to complete the digitization of books published in Japan in 2000 or earlier as soon as possible. 3.9 million materials including books, journals and doctoral theses have been digitized already, some of which are available on the internet. Detailed searches of these materials require text data.
The 2018 amendment to the Copyright Act allows text data on digitized materials to be created and used for searching without the permission of the copyright holder. In response, the National Diet Library has created text data for 2.57 million digitized materials and is using it for full-text search services of digitized materials in the National Diet Library Digital Collections. In addition, the National Diet Library Material Search for Persons with Disabilities (Mina Search) allows those who are blind, visually impaired, dyslexic, or otherwise print disabled to download text data themselves or through libraries. The text data of newly digitized materials will continue to be produced.

Experiences with establishing a new service (2024)

Flache, Ursula

As a new service to researchers in the field of Asian studies the Specialised Information Service Asia (Fachinformationsdienst (FID) Asien) which is managed by the East Asia Department of the Staatsbibliothek zu Berlin offers the CrossAsia Open Access Repository since summer 2022. Recommended by the German Research Foundation its goal is to provide open, free-of-charge and long-term access to quality scholarly materials from all fields of social sciences, cultural studies and humanities related to Asia. Nevertheless the views and expectations of information specialists, users and researchers concerning the Repository differ to some extent. In this talk the framework of its implementation, the reactions from the research community and the obstacles as well as the merits of promoting this new service will be shared.

Monumenta Nipponica as a Vital Publication Resource in Japanese Studies (2024)

Yiu, Angela

The mission of our journal is two-fold: to make scholarship on Japanese Studies written in English available to scholars all over the world, and to make Japanese scholarship accessible to Anglophone readership through translation of original Japanese scholarship. As a result, Japanese Studies will not be limited only to Japan and will be able to reach the world.
This presentation will discuss 1) How we modernize Monumenta Nipponica by utilizing digital connectivity to make Japanese Studies in the humanities widely available and accessible to the world; 2) How we continue to explore the possibilities, limitations, and hazards in the rapid development of AI; 3) How we upheld editorial and publication traditions to maintain the highest standard of publication. This presentation will include a Q&A about the journal for potential contributors and interested researchers.