The Korean language collection of the National Library of Australia numbers some 45,000 volumes of monographs and 1,500 serial titles, as well as 20 newspaper titles. It is the largest and most significant Korean collection in Australia, and has been assigned a high priority in the Library's collection development policy.
The strengths of the collection lie in the subject fields of the social sciences and humanities, especially economics, statistics, politics and government, foreign relations and law; Korean history, biography and archaeology; language and literature; philosophy, religion and fine arts.
Another strength of the National Library's Korean collection is in government publications received regularly on exchange. Major exchange programs have been established with the National Assembly Library and the National Library in Seoul. The Library also regularly acquires books, journals and currently published newpapers from North Korea.
The North Korean part has grown through new titles purchased from North Korea since 2003. The North Korean material numbers over 1500 monographs, 80 serial titles and 3 newspaper titles.
In addition there is the McLaren Human Collection, a gift to the National Library from Mrs Jessie McLaren, which contains a number of rare and valuable Korean books, particularly in the fields of history and literature. The oldest title dates from 1490.
The Korean collection is serviced from the Asian Collections Reading Room on the 3rd Floor of the National Library. This Reading Room is open to readers from 9.00am to 5.00pm Monday to Friday. Staff with Korean language expertise are available to assist readers.
Readers can search the catalogue and request materials using the Library's online requesting service. Books will be delivered to the Asian Collections Reading Room. Stack passes can be issued to readers who wish to browse the collections and select materials for their own use. When the Reading Room is closed readers may use Korean language materials in the Ground Floor Petherick Reading Room by prior arrangement.
The monthly Korean Acquisitions List is a listing of all new Korean publications received. It is available at http://www.nla.gov.au/korean/acquisitions
If you are looking for information on the Web, the National Library's Korean Internet Sites page has links to many important and useful resources related to Korea. It is avaliable at http://www.nla.gov.au/korean/websites