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English/Literature Research

Background Sources

Why use them?

Reference works, like dictionaries, encyclopedias, handbooks, as well as online sources like the ones listed here, can be important sources of background or other information to assist you with research on your term papers.  If your interests are broad, this information may help you focus on a manageable research topic.  These sources may also suggest books or articles which contain more information on your chosen topics.

Recommended Online Sources

These online web resources may help you in your research.

Recommended Sources from our Reference Collection

The Library has a large collection of encyclopedias, atlases, and other specialized reference books, in the Reference Collection on the 2nd floor. Following are a few examples:

Children's Liteature Review  Ref PN1009 .A1 C5139 (found in the 2nd floor compact shelving)

Contemporary Authors (online)

Contemporary Literary Criticsm  (online)

Dictionary of Literary Biography (online)

Encyclopedia of English Studies and Language Arts  Ref PE65 .E47 1994

Gay and Lesbian Literature  Ref PN56 .H57 G36 1994

Holocaust Literature  Ref PN56 .H55 H66 2003

Johns Hopkins Guide to Library Theory & Criticism  Ref PN81 .J554 2005

Masterplots II

  • African American Literature   Ref PS153.N5 M2645 1994
  • American Fiction  Ref PN846 .M37 1986
  • British and Commonwealth Literature Ref PR881 .M39 1987
  • Drama  Ref PN6112.5 .M37 1990
  • Juvenile and Young Adult Fiction Ref Z1037.A1 M377 1991
  • Nonfiction  Ref PN44 .M345 1989
  • Poetry  Ref PN1110.5 .M37 1992
  • Short Story Ref PN3326 .M27 1986
  • Women's Literature Ref PN471 .M37 1995
  • World Fiction Ref PN3326 .M28 1988

Nineteenth Century Literary Criticism (online)

Oxford Companion to the English Language  Ref PE31 .O93 1992

Oxford Encyclopedia of American Literature (online)

Oxford Encyclopedia of British Literature (online)

Oxford Encyclopedia of Children's Literature Ref PN1008.5 .O94 2006 (also available online)

Oxford English Dictionary  Ref PE1625 .O87 1989  (also available online)

Something About the Author  Ref PN 451 .S6 (found in the 2nd floor compact shelving)

Twentieth Century Literary Criticism (online)

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