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WG 120 Gender and Film: Narrative Film, Resistance, and Revolt

Instructor: Laura Fugikawa,

Film Contextual Information

Photo of film stock

Photo: Miquel Angel Pintanel Bassets, Llaunes i cel·luloide 03

Find Film Reviews and Magazine Features

Information about finding film reviews can be found in the Cinema Studies Guide, Film Reviews page.

Besides searching databases and general publications, you can search individual film magazines. Find specific titles on the Cinema Studies Guide, Find Articles page

Links to magazine and trade publications are listed in the right column. Cover art of magazine Sight and Sound (still from Only Lovers Left Alive)


Good Research Takes Time

Photo of student studying in front of giant clock

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

Shadow of figure taking picture of themselves  Photo:  Shadow by Apasciuto

Find Books & Media

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SEARCH our library catalog - the Entire CBB Collection or just Colby.

To order items from Colby Storage, Bates or Bowdoin: Click on

Other Catalogs:

Materials not available at Colby or our partner institutions can often be obtained through ILLiad, our interlibrary loan service.

Searching Tips

Unlike Google, library databases & catalogs don't try to guess what you want. Explore different options!


  • Try synonyms and related terms found in other articles and books
  • Use an asterisk to stand in for different word endings
    • sexualit* = sexuality, sexualities
  • Use quotation marks to "glue together" a phrase
    • "queer theory"
  • Use AND between terms to narrow results to items containing both terms
    • "gender identity" AND activis*
  • Using OR between items (within parentheses) widens results to items containing any one term
    • (film* OR "motion pictures" OR cinema OR movie*)
  • Combine these strategies in a search string
    • "racial identity" AND (film* OR "motion pictures" OR cinema OR movie*)


Find one good item? Use it to find Subject Terms. Subject terms group items by topic. Scan relevant item records and keep a record of the subject terms listed. This sometimes enables better discovery than a keyword search.

CBBcat uses Library of Congress Subject Headings. Examples of LOC Subject Headings include: Queer Theory , Gender Identity, Homosexuality in Motion PicturesMass Media in Race Relations, African Americans in Motion Pictures, Hispanic Americans in the Motion Picture Industry, Sex Role in Motion Pictures, Race in Motion Pictures

Note: Beware, Congress is slow to update these headings. Thus some of the terms are outdated or even offensive. However, they can still useful in discovering sources.

Use OneSearch to Find Both Scholarly Articles and Film Reviews

OneSearch is a discovery tool.

  • It searches multiple database at once.
  • This can be ian overwhelming mess for broad, popular topics, but very helpful for very precise searches.
  • Use to find both scholarly articles and film reviews for films that are not that well-known.
  • Use limiters to chunk down results into article types. (E.g. peer-reviewed, magazine articles, etc.)
  • Include the word "review" in your search keywords to specifically focus on film reviews.

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.

One good source can lead to another!

Sample References from Journal of Film and Video article

Portion of References from: Navar-Gill, Annemarie & Stanfill, Mel. ""We Shouldn't Have to Trend to Make You Listen": Queer Fan Hashtag Campaigns as Production Interventions." Journal of Film and Video, vol. 70 no. 3, 2018, pp. 85-100.

Look for a Cited Work using:

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

Find Scholarly Articles

Cover art of the journal, Camera Obscura, issue 80 (man and woman in masks) Camera Obscura: Feminism, Culture and Media Studies is a peer-reviewed journal from Duke University.

Use the following databases to find articles about films. In database interfaces, look for ways to limit your results to articles in  peer-reviewed scholarly journals.  

Screenshot of box to click in Proquest database to limit results to peer-reviewed articles

Scholarly journals...

  • include original research and analysis in a specific discipline
  • use in-text citations and bibliographies
  • typically contain peer-reviewed articles
  • are part of a scholarly conversation

Besides searching for articles in databases, you can also search individual peer-reviewed journals. A list can be found in the middle column of the Cinema Studies Guide "Find Articles" page.

Research Librarian

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Laine Thielstrom

Contact me by email or chat (send me a Google Hangouts invite). Or let's talk about your research or information need on Google Meet or Zoom!
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