Introduction to the SASS Collection at FAU

The SASS Collection of Intellectual, Social, and Technological History of the People’s Republic of China is a 2006 donation of the Shanghai Academy of Social Sciences (SASS) to the Institute of Sinology at the University Erlangen-Nuremberg (FAU). Due to lack of space, the Academy had to sort out its library duplicates that thanks to the decade-long research cooperation with FAU found a new home in Germany. The collection contains approximately 100,000 monographs as well as a variety of periodicals (approx. 10,000 bounded volumes) published from the late 1940s to the 1980s.

It features a wide range of publications, from translated Marxist classics to medical textbooks, from philosophical and literary works to agriculture handbooks and propaganda pamphlets, from popular youth magazines to academic journals. The collection’s major fields are technology and science (19,000 volumes), economics, industry, agriculture, and commerce (15,000 volumes), history and historical science (11,000 volumes) as well as literature and arts (14,000 volumes), dating from the second half of the 1940s to the 1980s. The collection offers a trove of primary materials that help to understand political propaganda, economic development, scientific innovation, and cultural production of the Mao era. Next to official sources it also contains documents “for internal distribution” (neibu faxing 内部发行) that allow insights into how the party-state shaped and controlled information in Chinese society. Read more…