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American Studies 101 Fall 2017: Find Articles

Harlem Renaissance, Instructor: Palmer

Article Databases

Search an article database to find citations (title, author, title of journal, date, page numbers) for articles on a particular topic.  The Library gives you access to over 200 article databases covering different disciplines.

1.  Think about which academic disciplines might write about your topic.  Examples:  literature, film, anthropology, history...

2.  Find the appropriate article database by subject (academic discipline or department).  Look for "Recommended" databases.

Library home > click on Databases, then click on:  Browse Databases. 

Pull down the "All Subjects" menu to browse a list of databases by academic discipline, and/or pull down the "All Database Types" to browse lists by type of database (article databases, statistical databases, image databases, etc.).

Sample Searches - Article Databases

Secondary sources:  America:  History and Life

Library home > Databases: Browse Databases  > All subjects:  History > America:  History and Life

Harlem Renaissance


publication date:  specific date range:  1900-1940


Primary sources:  Newspapers

Historical Newspapers (ProQuest)

Library home > Databases: Browse Databases  > All database types:  Archival Collections and Primary Sources > Historical Newspapers (ProQuest)

"cotton club"

publication date:  specific date range:  1923 - 1940


"a'lelia walker"


Black Studies Center:  primary and secondary sources

Library home > Databases: Browse Databases  >  All Subjects:  African American Studies   All Database Types:  Articles  >  Black Studies Center

1.  Example of a search using multiple terms and truncation,etc

james vanderzee  (anywhere)

limit to scholarly journals (on the left)

        james van der zee (anywhere)


       "small's paradise"

note:  BSC search results come in categories such as "essays" "required reading, etc."

"Essays," "Required Reading," "Timeline," and "Journals" results are likely to be secondary sources

"Timeline related," "Videos,""Images," "Newspapers" and "Black Literature Index" results may be primary sources

Improving your searches!

  • Wildcard (usually * but not always):  icon*
  • Phrase searching ("affirmative action")  "spanish american war"
  • using alternative terminology: rac* or ethnic* or minorit*
  • changing your termninology - 
    • narrower terms  (cambodian american instead of southeast asian american)
    • broader:   media instead of advertising
    • related:   gender instead of/in addition to:  women
  • using official subject terms (black women executives)
  • to narrow your search:  add a search term
  • to broaden your search:  eliminate a search term
  • try another database

Search Results

  • click on the title to see full record (including abstracts and descriptors)
  • to limit by publication type (peer-reviewed journals, conferences, books, etc.) click on the appropriate tab or link
  • if necessary,look for other limits (latest update, journal articles only, english only) and more advanced searches
  • select records to save to your personalized list; lists may be e-mailed, downloaded, printed

UC-eLinks - Find Article Text/Location

Once you've searched a database to find articles, you may need to use UC-eLinks orange logo to link to a PDF or html file if the full text is not immediately available. Each database is a bit different, but a good rule of thumb is this: when you see the Uc-eLinks icon click on it to view your article access options, which can range from full text to a call number to an Interlibrary Loan request:

UC e-Links image

For more information, here's a tutorial on using UC-eLinks.

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