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Asian History


India and South Asia through Primary Sources

This is a brief guide to the material available to Boston College faculty and students on subjects in Asian in history (understood including central, south, east, and south-east Asia).

Researching South Asia

The states currently associated with South Asia include Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Maldives, Nepal, India, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka.

What's on This Page by Source

    Broad Digital Collections

    Digital Libraries for South Asia

    National Libraries and Archives

    Sources: Audio/Visual

    Sources: Data & Statistics

    For access to more maps, visit out Historical Data & Statistics page.

    Sources: Law, Courts, and Government



    Sources: Literature

    Sources: News and Gazettes

    For access to more news sources, visit out Historical Newspapers page.


    Sources: Photographs

    Topics: Human Rights

    For additional suggestions, visit BC Libraries' Human Rights History research guide.

    Topics: Indian Ocean

    Topics: India and Britain

    Volume Titles

    Topics: India and China

    Topics: India and the U.S.

    International Organizations

    For additional international organizations' primary source sets, see the cooresponding Global History Research Guide.

    Topics: Science and Medicine

    Burns Box


    Our very own special collections library (Burns), has centuries of material that you can hold in your own hands. As with many U.S. institutions, however, the our material on spaces like Guatemala, India, China, presents a heavy U.S. and European perspective. That material is still important, but researchers should remember that these predominately white authors often approach their topics as colonizers lacking respect.  

    With that in mind, you should start by searching for material through BC Libraries' catalog and then ordering it (if you haven't registered, you'll be prompted). For a guide on the process, check out the "Finding Burns Material" page. You might also check out the following recommendations: 

    Travel and Description

    Individual Titles

    Economics of Imperialism

    Individual Title Samples

    For Additional Help

    For additional recommendations, contact your History Liaison, Erin, at or schedule an appointment.