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University Library, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

South Asian Comic Collection: Home

This guide accompanies our South Asian comics collection as part of an initiative to develop a national specialized research resource for students, instructors, and scholars interested in these materials.

About the collection

Above: From Indrajal Comics Online

The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign collects South Asian comics, including graphic novels, single-issue [“floppy”’] comics, comic strips, original comic art, digital comics, mini-comics, or other comics-related material.  The library also collects related research studies on South Asian graphic novels, as well as works inspired by them, such as video adaptations. 

The majority of the collection comprises Indian comics in English and selected vernacular languages, especially Hindi, Tamil, and Bengali. The collection also includes comics from Pakistan and Bangladesh in English, Urdu, and Bengali, and a limited number of comics from Sri Lanka, Nepal, and Bhutan. Currently numbering more than 6,500 items, the collection continues to grow with the help of the Library of Congress and vendors and private collectors in South Asia. We continue to welcome gifts and donations of South Asian comics, including both new and out-of-print materials. While Indian comics will continue to be the core of the collection, we intend to expand the holdings of comics from other South Asian countries in the future—especially Bangladesh, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka.

The South Asian comic collection is subject to a print retention agreement signed in 2018, which along with a commitment to retain the print materials contained in the collection, asserts that items in this collection are available for interlibrary lending to other institutions. 

Map of South Asia

Above: From Wikimedia Commons

Subject Guide

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International and Area Studies Library
Room 321 Main Library
1408 W. Gregory Dr.
Urbana, IL 61801
(217) 333-1501