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English Research Guide

This guide contains links to online databases and information about other resources for English and American Literature.

Research Guides

Literary Research Guide: An Annotated Listing of Reference Sources in English Literary Studies.Ed. James Harner. 5th ed. MLA, 2008. Ref PR 83 H34 2008.

Comprehensive listings with evaluations.  A guide to the best sources in all periods and genres.

MLA Handbook for Writers of Research Papers. 8th ed. MLA, 2016. Ref Desk LB 2369 G53 2016

Citation guide for footnotes and bibliographies.

Research Guide for Undergraduate Students: English and American Literature. Ed. Nancy Baker and Nancy Huling.  6th ed. MLA, 2006.  Ref PR 56 B34 2006

Brief how-to guide for writing research papers on English and American Literature topics.

Online Quick Reference Sources

Handbooks-Encyclopedias-Dictionaries-Companions

Bedford Glossary of Critical and Literary Terms. 3rd ed. REF PN 44.5 .M86 2009

Emphasizes recent literary terms and concepts with examples from literature and popular culture.

Cambridge Guide to Literature in English 3rd ed. REF PR 85 C29 2006

Covers writers, major works, genres, movements, terms and concepts for literature in U.S., U.K. and British Commonwealth, Africa and the Caribbean. Emphasizes contemporary writers.

Dictionary of Literary Biography 300+vols. PS 129 .D52  Stacks 3d Flr

Biographical-bibliographic-critical essays on writers. 

Handbook to Literature 10th ed. Ref PN 41 H355 2006

The most authoritative general handbook for English and American Literature. Explanations of literary terms, types, forms, genres, and periods. Includes chronology of English and American literary history.

Oxford Dictionary of Phrase and Fable. Ref PN 43 .O94 2000

For quick identification of literary allusions.  Also available online.

Oxford Encyclopedia of American Literature.  4 vols. Oxford UP, 2004. Ref PS 21 .E537 2004

Articles on major authors with some articles also on topics, themes, and movements.  Also available online

Oxford Encyclopedia of British Literature.  5 vols. Oxford UP, 2006. Ref PR 19 .O95 2006

Articles on major authors with some articles also on topics, themes, and movements.  Also available online

Bibliographies

ABELL: Annual Bibliography of English Language and Literature Z 2011 .M69 Stacks

Also referred to as the MHRA Bibliography for the organization that issues it. Best annual bibliography for criticism on British and American writers by British scholars prior to 1956. Swem has volumes for 1923-2006.  Now available online through Literature Online database

American Literary Scholarhip PS 3 .A47 Stacks

Annual evaluative bibliographic essays on the best scholarship on American literature. Arranged by major writers, periods, and topics. Have 1964-2003 in hard copy. Online version available since 1998.

Cambridge Bibliography of English Literature 3rd ed. Ref PR 83 .A1 C3 1999. V. 4. (6 vols. projected)

First volume to appear is Vol. 4: 1800-1900. New series excludes works of criticism after 1920. Therefore, See also:

New Cambridge Bibliography of English Literature. 5 vols. 1969-1977 Ref PR 83 A1 C3

Despite title, this work is older than previous item. Covers works by and about British Isles authors. Selective but extensive coverage of criticism through 1960s. Considered by many to be the best starting point for research in English Literature.

Year's Work in Critical and Cultural Theory Oxford UP for the English Association. 1921- PN 80 .Y43 YR Stacks

Annual bibliographic essays which select and evaluate the best work in the fields of literary and cultural criticism and theory over the year of coverage.  Swem tangible holdings are 1995 to date with gaps for 2006-2007 and online since the beginning in 1991.

Year's Work in English Studies Oxford UP for the English Association. 1921- PE 58 .E6 Stacks

Annual bibliographic essays which select and evaluate the best work in the field of English studies over the year of coverage.  Swem tangible holdings begin with Vol. 2 1920/1921.  Vols. from 2000 are in Reference Collection.  Full archive also available online

Biography

American National Biography.  Ed. John Garraty and Mark Carnes. 24 vols. + supplements.  Oxford UP, 1999. REF E 176 .A44 1999

Standard source for lives and accomplishments of major American figures.  Also available online

Oxford Dictionary of National Biography: From the Earliest Times to the Year 2000  Ed. H.C.G. Matthew and Brian Harrison. 60 vols.  Oxford UP, 2004. REF DA 28 .O95 2004

Standard source for lives and accomplishments of major English figures.  Also available online