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LIT 165 (Woodlief)

Step 1:  Wikipedia

You won't cite Wikipedia in your paper, but it can still be very useful for getting your search for sources started.

  1. Use it to identify what you want to explore in the body of your paper.  Wikipedia articles about literature are usually strong in discussing the context, themes, and arguments of particular authors and/or works.
  2. Check out the footnotes and bibliography for potential sources.  Sometimes, even scholarly sources will be listed.

Step 2:  Literature Resource Center

This library database is a great place to find non-scholarly, but reliable resources.  Look especially for:

  • Short author biographies (useful for your introduction)
  • overview essays
  • book reviews and author interviews (for more modern works and authors)

Also, everything you find in this database will be full text.

Step 3:  Library Search

This is where you go to find your 2 required scholarly sources (book chapters or journal articles).

Search tips:

1) Put the name of your author or title of work in quotation marks.  This forces it to search as phrase and avoids false hits.  Add other search terms outside of the quotation marks.  

  • Example:  "House on Mango Street" gender;  "Anne Bradstreet" relgion

2)  Use the Source Type menu on the left to narrow to the three scholarly source types:  articles, books, and book chapters.

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