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Search for Books and Articles

Looking to include relevant research to enhance your understanding of your poem?

You've come to the right place! 


Develop Search Terms 

Due to the fact that relevant research is requested for the analysis of your poem, you will become well acquainted with the library's catalog by the end of this assignment. Before the research process begins, it is wise to brainstorm and construct solid search terms. Write them down. These terms will help you locate applicable books and articles that you can use in your research paper. 

Step 1: Your first search term is the author's name. To locate information about the author, search the author's name in the library catalog.

  • For example: If you chose Henrietta Cordelia Ray's "Toussaint L'Ouverture"  for this assignment, you would not search for the poem itself. But searching Henrietta Cordelia Ray will lead you to eBooks such as African American Authors, 1745-1945: Bio-bibliographical Critical Sourcebook. In addition to finding out about Ray, you might discover the major themes of her writing.
  • Have you chosen "The Lake Isle of Innisfree"? Searching William Butler Yeats will lead to books explaining that Yeats was an Irish author. What does it mean to be an Irish author? The book The question of Irish identity in the writings of William Butler Yeats and James Joyce will shed light on that.

Step 2: Next, if you haven't already found critical analyses of the author's body of work, search the author's name AND criticism.

  • For example, searching George Eliot AND criticism will lead you to George Eliot and the British Empire, an eBook which places "George Eliot's life and work within the contexts of mid nineteenth-century British colonialism and imperialism" (Jacket).
  • Searching Carl Sandburg AND criticism reveals Phenomenal Reading Essays on Modern and Contemporary Poetics. If you're interested in politics, this one might be for you.

Step 3: For this assignment you also have to investigate the poem's historical contexts or artistic precursors, When brainstorming, your poem should be the first place to look. While reading through your poem, major themes or ideas may emerge. Also consider the biographical facts and criticism that you've found.What have you learned about the world in which your poet lived? These are your next search terms! 

  • You would search terms like Haitian revolution, François-Dominique Toussaint Louverture, and black insurrection AND Haiti. You don't need to guess to know where these terms came from!
  • You could search terms like jazz age to discover books such as The Jazz Age: Popular Music in the 1920s. Why "jazz age"? The phrase "Go to it, O jazzmen" from Sandburg's Jazz Fantasia, of course.
  • Searching Victorian poets yields Victorian Poets : A Critical Reader. Who's a Victorian poet? Most poets writing between 1837 and 1901, Queen Victoria's reign.
  • How about Siegfried Sassoon AND World war as a search? This search yields many titles, including On the trail of the Poets of the Great War : Robert Graves & Siegfried Sassoon.

Search the library's catalog - the Brenau Discovery Search immediately below

The catalog will link you to online books and articles on your topic. Both books and articles are great for this assignment. If an article or book you want is available in print but not electronically, - for example Available Brenau Trustee Library Main Collection MAIN PR1177 .V53 1995 - Ask A Librarian to email you the section you need!

Multidisciplinary Resources

More sources if you don't find what you need in the catalog! These multidisciplinary sources will cover everything you need from anthropology to zoology, history, the arts, and politics included... everything!

History and Politics Resources

And more... history and politics.

Literature Resources

Sociology Resources

And more... sociology.