Cultural Anthropology and History Libraries

Our network of libraries consists of a Research and Documentation Centre and five specialist libraries. 

Works may only be consulted on site; they cannot be taken out.

Research and Documentation Centre

The Research and Documentation Centre contains:

  • Ethnography works
  • Social anthropology works
  • Publications of the RMCA
  • General works on Africa, particularly Central Africa, reference works and bibliographies.

Information and appointments:


Archaeology library

Library specialising in the archaeology of sub-Saharan Africa

Practical information:

  • Where? 
    African Palace, second floor
    Paleizenlaan, 3080 Tervuren
    Building complex
  • When?
    By appointment, Monday to Friday, excluding Tuesday, 9:00 to 12:00 and 13:00 to 16:00.
  • Information and appointments:


History library

Please note that due to institutional reorganisation consulting some items of the History Library is suspended until further notice. We apologize for the inconvenience. We remain at your disposal should you have any questions.

The History Library has a collection of documents on the history of Africa and in particular the DR Congo, Rwanda and Burundi (16th-21st centuries).

The collection mainly covers exploration, colonisation (particularly Belgian colonisation) and decolonisation, and themes concerning current historical, sociological, memorial and artistic issues.

It contains 14,000 references: 

  • General and specialist works
  • Periodicals and reviews
  • Rare and valuable works, particularly atlases, geographical descriptions and travel writings 
  • Offprints
  • Theses and dissertations

> Online catalogue of the History Library

Practical information 


Library of Independent Congo

The library has an extensive collection of documents on the political, social and economic developments of the DR Congo from decolonisation (end of the 1950s) through to the present day

It comprises:

  • restricted or limited-availability documents
  • newspapers (including six newspapers that are currently published in Kinshasa) and periodicals 
  • files of press clippings
  • election posters for the 2006 Congolese elections
  • listed periodical articles
  • a variety of documents
  • theses and dissertations
  • maps.

The majority of these documents are now available in digital format. The database currently contains 33,000 references (listing all acquisitions - works, periodical articles, theses, dissertations, documents, archives, headlines from Congolese newspapers - since 1984). 

A daily updated version of the catalogue is available on-site.

> Online catalogue of the Library of Independent Congo


Lore Van de Broeck 
Tel: (+32) 02 769 58 45


African Linguistics Library

Books and periodicals dedicated to the oral literature and linguistics of sub-Saharan Africa:

  • grammar, lexicons, linguistic maps
  • comparative or historical linguistics, classification
  • vehicular languages, linguistic interchange
  • teaching manuals
  • epics, stories, proverbs, etc.
  • bibliographies

The Bantu and Mande groups are particularly well documented.

The digital catalogue contains some 2,800 works and articles

The library contains more than 11,000 references

Practical information

  • Where?
    CAPA building, third floor
    Leuvensesteenweg 17, 3080 Tervuren
    Building complex
  • When?
    By appointment, Monday to Friday, 9:00 to 12:00 and 13:00 to 16:30. 
  • Information and appointments:
    Muriel Garsou
    Tel.: (+32) 02 769 56 72
  • Accessible to people with reduced mobility.


Musicology library

Specialist library concerning the music of Africa and particularly Central Africa.

Practical information:

  • Where?
    CAPA building, third floor
    Leuvensesteenweg 17, 3080 Tervuren
    Building complex
  • When?
    By appointment, during office hours.
  • Information and appointments:
    Rémy Jadinon
    Tel.: (+32) 02 769 56 10
  • Accessible to people with reduced mobility.