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English & Literature

This is a Research Guide for doing literary research.

Finding Literary Criticism in Periodicals

Primary Source Databases Related to Literature

Reference Databases

Literature Database Comparisons


MLA Bibliography

Literature Resource Center


Project MUSE


Subject/Disciplinary Focus

 Literature/Linguistics – most comprehensive

All Literature


More focused on the humanities and social sciences


Source types

Scholarly journals, books, book chapters, dissertations, book reviews

Literature reference books, journal articles, various media, newspapers, magazines

Journal articles

Journal articles



Some, will often need to check Lemieux’s collection for full-text

All full-text!

All-full text except the last 3-7 years.

All full text.



Article indexing with subject terms and abstracts.

Subject indexing and full text searching.

No subject indexing.  Based on searching full-text of articles.

No subject indexing.  Based on searching full-text of articles.

Varies but lots of metadata searched.


Most comprehensive for literature.

Not comprehensive but focused on lit and all full-text.

All full text and all scholarly journal articles.

All full-text and all scholarly journal articles.

Biggest variety of source types.


Less immediate full-text so can be additional steps.   Looking up books/book chapters can be confusing (need to use Primo for that).

Not comprehensive (but pretty good!)

Doesn’t include last 3-7 years of articles.  No indexing, not comprehensive to literature.

No indexing, not comprehensive to literature.

So much going on!  



Best Places to Start - Interdisciplinary Databases

"What IS the MLA International Bibliography?" (video tutorial)

What's a scholarly journal or article?

MLA Tutorial - "Names as Subjects in the MLA International Bibliography"

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Student Engagement Librarian