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Searching Franklin for South Asia foreign relations information

The Penn Libraries have an enormous collection on South Asia, and searching for the right book on your topic will usually overwhelm you. These tips will help you tackle Franklin, the Penn Libraries book catalog.

1. Use Franklin's "Advanced Search" (tab) or "Keyword Expert" (dropdown) searching.

Searching for foreign relations books is pretty straightforward and there's no need for super-special tricks OR for doing overly-simple "relevance" keyword searching.

2. The power of "Subject Heading Keyword" (dropdown) searching.

You will usually want to search for words that appear in Franklin subject headings. Selecting "Subject Heading Keyword" from the search-type dropdown list restricts searching to occurrences in subject headings. "Subject Heading Keyword" helps in South Asian studies searching by filtering out non-subject occurrences of a word: think about how many of our books in all topics have been published in India and Pakistan!

3. Know your geography.

If a book is generally about a country, the country's name will appear in its subject headings. Books generally about relations between two countries will include both country names. Two Library of Congress Subject Headings examples:
India--Foreign relations.
India--Foreign relations--China.
If your country name has changed over time, know those names! "Keyword Expert" (dropdown) or "Advanced" (tab) searching makes combining these quasi-synonomous terms easy - AND DON'T FORGET THE "or"!
subject:(russia or "soviet union") [Keyword Expert]
subject:("east pakistan" or bangladesh) [Keyword Expert]
Think regionally, too. Books about more than one South Asian country will get a "South Asia" subject heading, with perhaps a couple country-name subject headings, too.

4. Know your relations.

There's a rich variety of subject heading subdivisions describing relations between countries. They include:
foreign relationsforeign relations administration
foreign economic relationseconomic sanctions
international relationsinternational economic relations
national securitymilitary policy
borderlandsborder security
boundariesboundary disputes
military assistance
economic assistanceeconomic development projects
agricultural assistanceagricultural development projects
industrial development projectsrural development projects
educational assistancemedical assistance
population assistanceinternational relief
humanitarian assistancefood relief
technical assistancetied aid
cultural relationsethnic relations
social relationseducational exchanges
intellectual cooperation 
emigration and immigrationvisitors, foreign
assisted emigrationbrain drain
frontier workersrepatriation
forced migrationrefugees
return migrationimmigrants
commercial policycommerce
free tradetariff
investments, foreignforeign exchange
debts, external 

Consider this "Keyword Expert" search:

subject:(assistance OR "development projects" OR relief) AND subject:(bangladesh)

5. Special topics.

Every country has its events, organizations, and other signifiers. Do trial keyword expert searchs using buzzwords you know, or consider these established subject headings:
India--History--Partition, 1947.Bengal (India)--History--Partition, 1947.
Dismemberment of nations.Partition, territorial.
Pakistan movement.All-India Muslim League.
India-Pakistan Conflict, 1947-1949.India-Pakistan Conflict, 1965.
India-Pakistan Conflict, 1971.Bangladesh--History--Revolution, 1971.
Sino-Indian Border Dispute, 1957- . 
Atomic bomb--India.Nuclear arms control--India.
Nuclear disarmament--India.Antinuclear movement--India.
Peace movements--India.Nuclear nonproliferation--India.
Militarism--India.Nuclear weapons--India.
Non-Aligned Movement.Nonalignment--India.
Religion and politics--Pakistan.Terrorism--Religious aspects--Islam.
Islam and politics--Pakistan.Hinduism and politics--India.
Hinduism and state--India.Secularism--India.
Afghanistan--History--Soviet occupation, 1979-1989.Afghanistan--History--1989- .

6. Special material formats.

Franklin uses special subject heading subdivisions to indicate that books contain special kinds of material. There are several Penn Library Web research guides offering help on finding diaries and personal narratives, speeches and transcripts, and travel narratives. Try keyword expert searches using these subject terms:
sourcespersonal narratives

7. HELP!

Ask for it. E-mail us. Call us. Visit us. Penn librarians built the Penn Library collections, we maintain it, and we use it every day. Visit Get Help/Ask Us as soon as possible!