|Ramsey Library Research Guides
To find books of criticism about an
author, do a subject search for the author's name in the library
catalog. Enter the search,
last name first.
You may leave out commas and periods:
eliot t s
Examine your results for helpful subject subdivisions (subheadings), such
as Criticism and interpretation,
History and criticism, and Bibliography.
Examples of ways in which these subject search elements can be combined:
Morrison, Toni - Criticism and interpretation
Shakespeare, William, 1569-1616 - Sonnets
Austen, Jane, 1775-1817 - Bibliography
It's also possible to
search for the title of a work as a subject,
such as Moby Dick
or Things Fall Apart.
Ways to focus your search
Original language of the work (Spanish, English, German ...)
Literary form (drama, poetry, fiction ...)
Time period (medieval, 18th century ...)
Author characteristics, such as:
Nationality (American essays ...)
Gender (Feminist literary criticism ...)
Geographic location (Caribbean drama ...)
Ethnicity (Slavic literature ...)
Online periodical indexes
To find critical articles about a
or an author, try a search for
the author name and/or work title in the following databases:
index to scholarly research on English, American, and world Literature, languages, and
Text. Index to a number of major journals in the humanities, including full-text
articles. Great place to search for literature and language, classics,
folklore, drama, and the performing arts.
Literary Journals from JSTOR.
Complete full-text back runs
of many core journals in language and literature.
Literature Online (LION).
Works of English and American poetry, drama and prose,
with many full-text literature journals, and other criticism and reference resources.
For further resources, see a complete list of our online
periodical indexes for Literature.
Print literary criticism resources
The Ramsey Library Reference Collection contains many multi-volume series of literary
criticism, and their comprehensive indexes make them good starting places for research.
Works in the Gale Literary Criticism Series
provide access to biographical information and
Most of these titles contain cumulative author and
title indexes in which you
can look up a specific literary work.
However, the most convenient way to locate an author or title in any
of the Gale Literary Series is to search Gale's Literary Index online.
It includes the following titles shelved in the Reference collection:
Contemporary Literary Criticism (CLC) Ref PN771 .C65x
Living authors or those who died after 1959
Twentieth Century Literary Criticism (TCLC) Ref PN771 .T85x
Authors who died between 1900 and 1959
Native North American Literature
Ref PS508.I5 N38 1994
U.S. and Canadian native writers from historical times to 1994
Nineteenth Century Literature Criticism (NCLC)
Ref PN761 .N5
Authors who died between 1800 and 1899
Literature Criticism from 1400 to 1800 (LC)
Ref PN86 .L53
Authors who died between 1400 and 1799 (excluding Shakespeare)
Classical and Medieval Literature Criticism (CMLC)
Ref PN610 .C53 Authors
who died before 1400
Shakespearean Criticism Ref PR2965 .S43
Shakespeare's plays and poetry
Black Literature Criticism (BLC) Ref PS153 .N5 B556 1992
Black authors of the past 200 years
Hispanic Literature Criticism (HLC) Ref PQ7081.A1 H573
Hispanic authors of late 19th and 20th centuries
The Dictionary of Literary Biography (DLB) is an ongoing series that contains both criticism and biographies of writers and
other influential literary figures such as historians, journalists,
publishers, and screenwriters. Each volume focuses on a specific topic,
period, or genre (for example, vol. 237 is The Beats, A Documentary
Volume), and contains a cumulative index of individuals and subjects
reviewed to date in the series. Annual updates to earlier DLB
articles are published in yearbooks, and intensive treatments of
figures appear in the DLB
Dictionary of Literary Biography (DLB) Ref PN451 .D5
Dictionary of Literary Biography Yearbook, 1980- Ref PN451.D5 Y3
Dictionary of Literary Biography Documentary Series
Ref PN451.D5 D6
The Magill's Critical Survey Of ...
are multi-volume sets
generally organized by literary form and language. Ramsey Library has:
Critical Survey of Drama: English Language Series
Ref PR623 .C75 1994
Critical Survey of Drama: Foreign Language Series
Ref PN1625 .C74 1986
Critical Survey of Poetry: English Language Series
Ref PR502 .C85 1992
Critical Survey of Poetry: Foreign Language Series
Ref PN1111 .C7 1984
Critical Survey of Short Fiction Ref PN3321 .C7 1993
To locate articles in the above series, see the
Magill Index to Critical Surveys: Cumulative Indexes 1981-1988
Ref PN524 .M34
Other useful multivolume series include:
- American Writers, 1974- Ref PS129 .A55
- British Writers, 1979- Ref PR85 .B688
- European Writers, 1983- Ref PN501 .E9
If your topic has been previously researched, someone may have published a guide to
useful sources. Often words such as guide,
checklist, explication, or bibliography occur in the title, or the call number begins with
the letter Z. For example:
A Guide to Critical Reviews of United States Fiction, 1870-1910
Ref Z1225 .E35
Poetry Explication: A Checklist of Interpretation Since 1925 for British and
American Poems Past and Present PR 502 .B1 K86 1980
Articles on Twentieth Century Literature: An Annotated Bibliography, 1954 to 1970
Ref Z6519 .P66
Twentieth Century Short Story Explication: New Series
Ref PN3373.B1 W34 1993
Magill's Bibliography of Literary Criticism Ref PN523 .M25
Literary Criticism Index also provides quick access to criticism of a specific work
of literature in numerous bibliographies and checklists. Ref Desk PN523 .B1
If you're researching a particular author, try
browsing the general stacks in the
appropriate call number area. Works by the author
are shelved first, followed by biographies,
criticism and interpretation, and bibliographies about the author.
Another good source for a specific author is the Biography and Genealogy Master Index,
available to UNCA users online.
Literary Criticism Collection
Internet Public Library site provides links to online
critical and biographical information about
authors and their works -- browseable
by author, title, or literary period.
Literary Resources on
collection of websites related to
literature and the humanities. Compiled by Rutgers University Professor Jack
Annotated links explain
what type of information about a
literary work, its
author, or period can be found on each site.
Organized alphabetically by author within the
genres of critical theory, drama, essays, fiction,
and poetry. Sponsored by Bedford/St.
Voice of the Shuttle: Web Page for
A must-visit site with extensive literature
English & American
Ramsey research guide with many links to online books and articles.
Feeling overwhelmed? Please feel free to
ask for help at the Research Desk.
Originally created by Araby Greene. Last updated
8 November, 2007.
Comments to the Library Web Team.
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