The East Asian Library collects materials in practically all subjects in Chinese, Japanese, and Korean, as well as works on Chinese, Japanese and Korean linguistics and literatures in Western languages. Although the Gest Library was originally begun with the acquisition of many rare books, today it is the working collection that supports all kinds of research done in the Department and Program of East Asian Studies. Emphases in the makeup of the collection reflect the strengths of the department. Thus the collection is quite comprehensive in works on literature and history, with less stress placed on works in the social sciences. As is appropriate to the Chinese collection, it is also voluminous in philosophy and religion, geography and the classics; of special note is the collection on traditional Chinese medicine. The Japanese collection has similar areas of strength with the holdings in premodern history being particularly noteworthy. The Korean collection, though much smaller in scale than the other two, provides a basis for scholarly research.