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EN 271 Critical Theory: Resources

Spring 2017 (Osborne)

Find Scholarly Articles

Best bet for literary criticism:

Other databases with literary criticism:

Articles not available in full-text? Request through ILLiad interlibrary loan.

Look for Request from ILLiad or Request from another library links when a database advices you that full-text is not available.

Scholarly Journals

Articles in scholarly journals are particularly important to academic research. They:

  • report original research in a specific discipline
  • use in-text citations and bibliographies
  • typically contain peer-reviewed articles

Look for options in databases to limit results to articles in scholarly, peer-reviewed journals.

MLA Citation Help

Older editions of the MLA handbook are also available. Many databases still use the 7th edition.  OWL uses the 8th edition. Note the differences! Be consistent.

MLA 7th Edition: Falk, Cynthia G. "'The Intolerable Ugliness Of New York': Architecture And Society In Edith Wharton's The Age Of Innocence." American Studies 42.2 (2001): 19-43. MLA International Bibliography. Web. 19 Jan. 2017.

MLA 8th Edition: Falk, Cynthia G. "'The Intolerable Ugliness Of New York': Architecture And Society In Edith Wharton's The Age Of Innocence." American Studies, vol. 42, no. 2, 2001, pp. 19-43. EBSCO, Accessed 19 Jan. 2017.

EN 271 Critical Theory - Library Resources

  Arthur Rackham  color plate from: Shakespeare, William. A Midsummer Night's Dream. London: W. Heinemann , 1920. Hathi Trust Digital Library

Literary Criticism in Books

Use CBBcat (our Colby, Bates & Bowdoin library catalog) to find books with literary criticism.



Just looks for matching words in CBBcat item records. To narrow results, try using quotes to glue together words in phrases, titles or an author's name. "Edgar Allan Poe" critic*

An asterisk is a wild card that stands in for different endings of a word. Thus critic* = critic, critics, criticism, and critical

Try a keyword search that includes a work's title. Note that your result may include both the work and items about that work. "William Shakespeare" "Midsummer Night's Dream"



More precise. Search takes you to books pre-identified as being about that subject, but must use specific vocabulary. Identify subject headings by checking item records found in a keyword search.

To find all the subject terms about an author, do an Subject Search using the author’s name (last name first): Shelley, Mary (Select Subject from first drop-down option in CBBcat.)



Books in Miller Library: Look at the call number. Most literary works are on the 2 bottom floors of the Miller bookstacks.

Books located at the Colby Storage Facility, Bates or Bowdoin: To order click

Enter your name and bar code number (omit beginning and ending letters) from your Student ID or Library Card. You will be notified by email when your request is available to pickup at the Miller Service Desk.

To broaden your search further,  try the other catalogs listed under Books & More on our home page: NExpress, MaineCat and WorldCat.

Following a Citation Trail

Check the works cited, notes, references and bibliographies of every relevant article or book. You may discover a book or article perfect for your topic.

sample citations

Hafley, James Robert, 1928 - The Glass Roof: Virigina Woolf as a Novelist. Berkely: University fo California Press, 1954. (link to bibliography)

One good source can lead to another!
Look for a Cited Work using:

  • OneSearch (articles)
  • CBBcat (books, media available through Colby)
  • NExpressMaineCat (books, media available regionally)
  • Hathi Trust (sometimes has full-text digital versions of older books or articles)
  • WorldCat (if can't find resource locally)

Good Research Takes Time

Keep a research log & document every search.

Explore a variety of search terms.

Check multiple resources.

Carefully evaluate all materials.

Photo: Clock Roskilde University by nikolainewyork

Humanities Librarian

Laine Thielstrom's picture
Laine Thielstrom

Please don't hesitate to come to me for assistance or questions!
Email me your best dates/times to meet or stop by my office, Miller Library 107C.

Spring 2018 Office Hours:
Tuesdays: 1-2:30pm
Wednesdays: 1-2:30pm
(except 5/8 12-1:30pm)


OneSearch searches multiple resources at once. Use for very precise searches:

  • Finding a specific article
  • Finding book chapters on a topic
  • Finding book reviews

For best results, use limiters:  field drop-downs (Title, Publication Title), content type (articles, book chapters, book reviews), etc.

For topical searches, first consult CBBcat and individual databases.

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