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Literary Criticism for Students (and anyone else)

A guide to researching literary criticism online and at the library

Database Tips

Use the Boston Public Library's specialized literature and general databases to access full-text articles, biographical and critical essays, bibliographic citations, and more, on authors, their works, literary movements etc., from all time periods and all parts of the world,

Database Tips:

  • If you are using a phrase in the basic search box, put it in quotes.  For example: Fitzgerald and "Jazz Age."
  • Look at the search limiters offered in each database.  You can usually limit by full-text, date, or to peer-reviewed publications (articles from academic journals that go through a review process), etc.
  • When you get your results, there are usually further limiting options on the left side of the screen.
  • Check to see if there is an abstract.  You should be able to gauge quickly from reading the abstract whether the article will be useful to your research.
  • Consider the length of the article.  A very short article will probably not have the depth you require.
  • Tools usually available include the ability to print, e-mail documents, download documents, and generate citations that you can either save, or export to another citation management tool.

Literary Periodicals

General Periodicals