Category: Databases (page 1 of 3)

Maruzen eBook Library (MeL) Now on Trial at OSU Libraries

Update (posted September 1, 2020): Following the trial period described in this blog, OSU Libraries made the decision to permanently adopt the Maruzen eBook Library (MeL) platform, which can be accessed now at: Continue reading for details on how to use this helpful new e-resource!

In an effort to increase the list of e-resources for research and teaching in Japanese Studies, we have set up an Extended Trial Reading Agreement for the Maruzen eBook Library (MeL), which will last until the end of May.  During this trial period, OSU users will be able to access over 56,000 Japanese ebook titles.

Also during this trial period, unlimited concurrent user access is possible, but printing and downloading are not. If you have specific printing and downloading needs – or any questions whatsoever about Japanese language e-resources –  please contact me, Ann Marie Davis, the Japanese Studies Librarian at OSU, at

To get started using this online platform, click the link in the OSU catalog here:   

For tips on how to search for books in MeL and use the various platform functions, please refer to the Maruzen eBook Library cheatsheet.

If you see something you’d like to consider purchasing, please feel free to e-mail me. If you need MeL materials for your teaching or research projects, you can also fill out this form for eBook purchases, which goes straight to our OSU Library acquisitions office:




Introducing the newly available Manchuria Daily News Online English Database


Japanese Studies at OSU Libraries is pleased to announce that the Manchuria Daily News Database is now available to the university community through the OSU library catalog.  The newly acquired database offers full access to the complete digital text of the Manchuria Daily News newspaper, published from 1908 to 1940.  The database thus offers an English-language archives of a rare newspaper that once provided the official Japanese interpretation of its presence in China in the early twentieth century. 


Image of the Database Home Page

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Introducing The Oriental Economist Archives and Database

The Oriental Economist Digital Archives is the 6th database offered through JK Books at OSU.


Japanese Studies at OSU Libraries (OSUL) is proud to announce that The Oriental Economist Digital Archives is now open for OSU users.  It is the 6th database offered through JK Books at OSU, along with five other searchable databases. The Oriental Economist (TOE) was published by the Toyo Keizai Inc. (Toyo Keizai Shimposha:  東洋経済新報社) from 1934 to 1985. TOE was exceptional in the sense that, despite being a domestic magazine in Japan, it was written in English and intended for overseas readership.

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Introducing the Toyo Keizai Archives (東洋経済アーカイブズ)

The suite of 5 databases offered through JKBooks at OSU appears in the left margin. The Toyo Keizai Archives is listed at the bottom.

Japanese Studies at OSU Libraries (OSUL) is delighted to announce that the Toyo Keizai Archives (東洋経済アーカイブズ) has been added to our suite of online offerings. It is an extraordinary database of one of Japan’s oldest economic magazines and one of the three leading business magazines in Japan, along with Nikkei Business (日経ビジネス) and Weekly DIAMOND (週刊ダイヤモンド). The full-text, searchable digital archives includes 120 years of publications, or 58,000 issues, from the inaugural issue of November 15th, Meiji 28 (1895) to Heisei 27 (2015).

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New to OSU Libraries: The Japan Times Digital Archive!

Japanese Studies at OSU Libraries is delighted to announce that The Japan Times Digital Archive is now available at The Ohio State University. It is an extraordinary archive of Japan’s oldest English language newspaper and only independent English-language newspaper in existence today.  The digital archive allows you to search the full text of all issues of The Japan Times published since its inauguration in March 1897 (Meiji 30) until 2014.

“The Japan Times Archives” search interface

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Focus on Rekion: Okinawan Folk Music Asadoya Yunta (安里屋ユンタ)

Asadoya Yunta (安里ユンタ or 安里屋節) is one of the most widely performed Okinawan songs in recent music history.  The song originated from Taketomi Island in the Yaeyama district of Okinawa, Japan. It tells the tale of a young and beautiful peasant woman named Kuyama Asato (安里クヤマ) and the advances of a government official. The version wide-spread in Okinawa has Kuyama refusing the official as she felt the stability offered by marrying a local man was better than the luxurious but short-lived lifestyle of a mistress. However, in the Taketomi Island version, Kuyama ended up becoming the official’s mistress.

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Focus on Rekion: Jazz Music in Japan

There is some uncertainty about the beginnings of jazz music in Japan, but some believe it started with an increase in luxury liners between Japan and the western coast of the United States. These liners were equipped with orchestras and bands that played for the passengers, and often this included jazz music. Passengers whose interest had been sparked would purchase records and sheet music at various ports of call during their travels. Continue reading

Focus on Rekion: Noriko Awaya (淡谷のり子)

Noriko Awaya in her fifties. From 「淡谷のり子:わが放浪記」

Awaya Noriko (淡谷のり子) was a Japanese soprano and blues singer born in Aomori, Japan on August 12, 1907. Because her family was quite wealthy, she was able to go to school for a time at Toyo Conservatory of Music (東洋音楽学校, present day Tokyo College of Music). However, her father’s business became bankrupt and she was forced to leave school for a year, working part-time as a nude model. Eventually she returned to school, finished her studies, and began her 70-year long career. Her most famous songs include the 1937 hit 「別れのブルース」 (Wakare no burūsu) and 「雨のブルース」 (Ame no burūsu).

Rekion access in OSUL — Noriko Awaya’s popular songs can be found with the following Rekion identifiers:

  • 「別れのブルース」
    • info:ndljp/pid/2915506
  • 「雨のブルース」
    • info:ndljp/pid/8272244

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Focus on Rekion: Motoori Nagayo 本居長世

Nagayo Moto’ori, from 朝日新聞 January 12, 1917

Nagayo Motoori (本居長世) (1885-1945) was a Japanese composer known for children’s songs. Although his grandfather and guardian protested, he pursued a music degree at Tokyo School of Music (present day Tokyo University of the Arts) and began working there as a research assistant studying traditional Japanese music. He was well-known for his talent on the piano (for which he served as an assistant professor) but switched suddenly to composing due to a finger injury. During his employment at the university, he taught other important Japanese musicians such as Shinpei Nakayama. Continue reading

Focus on Rekion: Shōchiku Kagekidan 松竹歌劇団

The Shōchiku Kagekidan (松竹歌劇団) was an all female revue and musical troupe that lasted from 1928 to 1996, and rivaled the famed Takarazuka Kagekidan (宝塚歌劇団). Continue reading

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