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Humanities: Periodicals, Databases, & Indexes

Many humanities periodicals are scholarly journals with rigorous editorial standards. Peer review is a common standard across disciplines. Specifically, articles go through a process that involves evaluation by the journal editor and also a panel of experts in the field. They may be published by professional associations, scholarly societies, trade groups, nonprofits, university presses, or commercial publishers.

readRead!
Read Hicks, Diana & Wang, Jian (February 1, 2011). Coverage and overlap of the new social science and humanities journal lists. Journal of the American Society for Information Science, and Technology, 62(2), 284-294.

Scenario Stumper
I'm starting a graduate program in architecture and I'm supposed to become familiar with the periodicals being published in the United States. Where do I start? How many are there?
Go to Ulrich's Periodical Directory and search for active, journals in the United States.
The Bottom Line... there are a couple dozen journals. It can probably be narrowed to a dozen based on areas of interest. One nice thing about using Ulrich's Periodical Directory is that it provides a link to the IUPUI databases if the journal is available through IUPUI.

Humanities and Digital Humanities

Many academic, peer-reviewed journal are available online including JSTOR, Project Music, and Periodical Archives Online. Historical publications are also available online. For instance, Making of America Digital Journal Collection contains journals from the antebellum period through Reconstruction.

Journals

Databases

try itTry It!
Locate a journal in a humanities area such as art, literature, music, film theater, performing arts, philosophy or religion using Project Muse. Choose journals and the access option that shows only full access periodicals. Examine the cover and first few pages as well as the last few pages. Also, look at the table of contents to see how the articles and other information are organized within the journal. What information is provided that might be useful in matching the journal with readers? What type of reader might be interested in this journal? List the title of the journal and share your findings in a few sentences.

Many public libraries are now offering electronic versions of journals through companies like Zinio. Some examples of popular magazines in the Humanities offered by Zinio include:

Scenario Stumper
I just got my first high quality digital camera. I'm looking for tips and ideas that will help build my photography skills. I'd really like something that I can read on my iPhone or iPad.
Try a magazine such as Digital Photo or Popular Photography. Both of these magazines are available at many public libraries through Zinio.
The Bottom Line... rather than a book or journal, consider magazines for short, informational articles on popular topics.

Art

 

Core Art Journals

Visual Arts

Architecture

Magazines

Databases

EBSCO

ProQuest

Other Databases

General Sources

Scenario Stumper
I need to do a paper for my art history class, but I don't have any ideas. I'm supposed to choose something unique that makes a contribution. What should I do?
Go to Oxford Art Online. Choose the ALL CONTENT option from the upper left corner. This will provide an alphabetical listing of over 50 thousand topics. Do some browsing for ideas. Or, choose the IMAGES option and browse through over 7000 images for ideas.
The Bottom Line... A librarian can't choose a topic of write a paper, but he/she can provide a place to explore.

 

Languages and Linguistics

 

Journals

Databases

Scenario Stumper
I'm supposed to read an article from Linguistic Inquiry. Do we have that journal?
At IUPUI the easiest way to locate a journal is to go to Citation Linker and do a quick search.
The Bottom Line... Yes, Linguistic Inquiry is available through three databases at IUPUI. However Project Muse is the only one with current issues.

Literature

Some bibliographies focus on a particular type of authorship, publication, or topic. These are particularly useful for scholars because they may include items overlooked in general bibliographies.

Journals

Magazines

Scenario Stumper
I was assigned the topic of American Indian Literature. I need to write a paper that includes at least five peer-reviewed articles. Where do I start?
If you don't already have a topic within this area, consider browsing a specialized journal like Studies in American Indian Literatures. You can find it in Project Muse.
The Bottom Line... specialized journals exist in most areas of literature. Begin there for some of the best articles. When you find an article of interest, spend some time exploring the article's bibliography or list of references.

Databases

Alexander Street Press

Scenario Stumper
I'm interested in representations of minority characters in satirical, underground comic books. I'm not having much luck getting the depth I need with Google.
The Underground and Independent Comics from Alexander Street Press is a scholarly, primary source database focusing on comics.
The Bottom Line. The Underground and Independent Comics provides a list of satirical comics to explore. Use the specialized databases from Alexander Street Press or Chadwyck-Healey to dive into specific areas of literature.

TeachingBooks.net. Available through IUPUI and Inspire. This database is designed to provide youth and adults information about books for children and young adults.

try itTry It!
Alexander Street Press and Chadwyck-Healey both provide access to collections of literature. Compare and contrast these publisher's approaches and the tools they provide. Share three things that are alike and three things that are different.

Chadwyck-Healey from ProQuest

EBSCO

Gale

Literature Resource Center and LitFinder from Gale are important places to start. It contains contains full-text journal article, biographies, book reviews, and multimedia. Check out the following elements:

Scenario Stumper
I'm a little overwhelmed. I'm writing a paper the author of The Hunger Games, Suzanne Collins. My teacher says I can't use Wikipedia, World Book encyclopedia, or websites. What do I do?
Contemporary Authors is the most respected place for author information. Let's start there.
The Bottom Line... K-12 teachers and faculty ask students not to use the Internet for a variety of reasons. This opens the possibility of using quality information sources. One advantage of using Contemporary Authors is that it provides a bibliography of many additional resources to explore.

try itTry It!
Go to Contemporary Authors from the Gale databases. Search for your favorite author. List five reasons for using this resource rather than doing a Google search for author information.

Newsbank

ProQuest

Others

Criticism

Criticism plays an important role in many areas of humanities scholarship. Research may be conducted in artists, literary figures, historical figures, or in other areas.

Scholarly reviews generally focus on a single work and how a work fits into a context, how it related to earlier works, the limitations or weaknesses of the work, how it's distinct from other works, and how it makes a unique contribution to the field.

Review essays provide an overview of scholarship in a particular area and review multiple related works.

Historical reviews trace how a concept is understood over time by examining a series of works. These articles may trace the arc of a creator's work comparing how it's evolved over time.

Many individual journals contain reviews at the end of each issue. However a few databases focus specifically on criticism. Compilations may be organized around a genre such as poetry, critical approach such as feminist, or time period such as post colonial.

Literature Criticism Online. This is the main starting point for Gale's criticism databases. Available through IUPUI.

Scenario Stumper
I'm writing a paper for my children's literature class. I'm looking for book reviews of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone by J.K. Rowling that came out within a few months of when the book was first released in the United States in 1998. I'm not having luck with Google.
Book Review Index Online will provide reviews within a particular time frame.
The Bottom Line... you can find lots of reviews on social media, but if you're looking for reviews in professional journals, it's a good idea to use a database.

Music

The area of music has benefitted tremendously from the advent of digital communication. Like many other areas, library users are shifting from the use of physical media to online information sources. Databases of digital sheet music, audio music files, and video recordings are all essential elements of music scholarship.

The Music Index Online from EBSCO indexes the largest collection of journals. Unfortunately, full-text isn't provided, so users will need to locate the journals through other sources such as Project Muse or JSTOR. While the International Index to Music Periodicals Full Text from ProQuest doesn't index as many journals, nearly half of the articles are available in full-text. RILM Abstracts of Music Literature from EBSCO provides an index and abstract. But again, users will need to go to other sources for the full-text of most journals.

Fortunately, an increasing number of journals are being made available for free through associations or open access websites.

Read!
Read Procell, James (2012). Trends in patron use of physical media materials and subscription online media databases at the University of Louisville: A ten-year study. Music Reference Services Quarterly, 15, 231-239.

Journals

Laurie J. Sampsel maintains an outstanding list of music journals. In addition to her core collection, she also lists musical research and study, music performance, and musicans.

try itTry It!
Browse the Core Music Journals page. Find three that are available through IUPUI subscription databases. Also, determine which are available for free through the Internet.

Magazines

Entertainment: Music

Instruments

Subscription Databases

Open Access Databases

According to Green and Duffy (2013), the International Musicological Society and the International Association of Music Libraries, Archives, and Documentation Centres sponsor four bibliographic projects. These are useful for music scholars. Some parts are free and others are subscription only.

Scenario Stumper
I'm writing a paper on the environmental themes found in John Denver's music. I need to find some support in the literature. I tried Google, but couldn't find a professional article. Where do I go?
Use RILM Abstracts of Music Literature to answer questions related to music history, ethnmusicology, and music theory.
The Bottom Line... A search of RILM comes up with the article "'I've seen it raining fire in the sky': John Denver's popular songs and environmentalist memory" by Jeffrey Filipiak in Resounding pasts: Essays in literature, popular music and cultural memory. Published by: Newcastle upon Tyne, England: Cambridge Scholars, 2011. Use the references in this article for lots of ideas.

Indexes

Seek out indexes for composers and songs.

Print Indexes

Open Access Indexes

Discography

A discography is a list of sound recordings. According to (Reitz, 2014), a discography is

"a list or catalog of audiorecordings, usually of works by a specific composer or performer, in a certain style or genre, or of a specific time period. Each entry in a discography provides some or all of the following descriptive elements: title of work, name of composer and performer(s), date of recording, name of manufacturer, manufacturer's catalog number, and release date (see this online example). Also refers to the systematic cataloging of audiorecordings and to the study of sound recording as a medium of expression. The person who compiles such a catalog is a discographer. Compare with filmography."

For examples, go to Discographies at Music Research: A Handbook.

Many popular music groups have a discography section at their website. Do a search for a musical artist or group and add the work discography such as Sting discography. In this case, the first hit is the discography page of Sting's official website.

A few online examples of discographies include:

try itTry It!
Do a Google search for your favorite musical artist and discography.

Performing Arts

 

Journals

Magazines

Scenario Stumpers
I'm a dancer and I've been offered a role in a museum production. I'm not familiar with this type of venue. The producer said that a recent dance journal had a special issue on dance in museums but I didn't catch the title. Can you find it for me?
Many of the dance journals are found in Project Muse. Let's start there. A search for dance museum brings up an article in the Dance Research Journal dated 2014. A look at the journal's table of contents notes that this is a special issue titled "Dance in the Museum".
The Bottom Line... although a Google search brings up lots of information about dance in museums, it doesn't find this special issue. Searching the databases associated with dance was much more productive.

Databases

Alexander Street Press

Chadwyck-Healey

EBSCO

ProQuest

General Sources

Many review sources provide bibliographies related to play and film reviews.

Filmography

According to (Reitz, 2014), a filmography is

"a list of motion pictures, usually limited to works by a specific director or performer, in a particular genre, of a specific time period or country, or on a given subject, usually listed alphabetically by title or chronologically by release date. The entries in a filmography include some or all of the following elements of description: producer, distributor, director, cast, release date, running time, language, color or black and white, etc. Click here to see an online filmography of Alfred Hitchcock, courtesy of the Internet Movie Database. Compare with discography."

 

Philosophy

 

Journals

Databases

try itTry It!
Go to the Philosopher's Index from ProQuest. Do a search for a major area such as epistemology or metaphysics. Notice how it provides suggestions for related searches. This is very helpful in narrowing a topic.

Religion

 

Journals

Magazines

Databases

Chadwyck-Healey

EBSCO

Scenario Stumper
I'm working on a paper related to the Biblical symbolism in Annie Dillard's Pilgrim at Tinker Creek. I've got lots of ideas, but I need some support in the literature. Where can I find some journal articles?
The ATLA Religion Database with ATLASerials from EBSCO is a good place to start. A search for bible Pilgrim at Tinker Creek brings up over a dozen articles.
The Bottom Line... although a Google search finds some connections, it doesn't provide the depth of the research articles found in the database.

Others

Sports, Fitness and Recreation

SPORTDiscus w/ Full Text from EBSCO. Offers comprehensive, bibliographic and full text coverage of sport, fitness and related disciplines. This database contains over 230 full text titles. In addition, SPORTDiscus with Full Text also contains over 650,000 records with journal and monograph coverage going back to 1800; over 20,000 dissertations and theses and reference to articles in 60 different languages. Availabl through IUPUI.

Resources

Reitz, Joan M. (2014). Online Dictionary for Library and Information Science. Libraries Unlimited. Available: http://www.abc-clio.com/ODLIS/odlis_a.aspx.

The descriptions for many of the databases are excerpt or adapted from the IUPUI A to Z Database page.

Journals selected based on Web of Knowledge Journal Citation Reports.


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