English Language and Literature

Love of literature
Photo: Ning, via Flickr (CC license)

Article Indexes

Browse by Chronological Period

Electronic Journals in Queen's Libraries

Articles are smaller in scope than books and can therefore focus on more particular aspects of a given topic. Since articles are faster to produce and publish, the most up-to-date research often appears in this form. Many are now available on-line, making them attractive also in terms of convenience. Articles in scholarly journals are peer-reviewed—that is to say, they have gone through an anonymous formal vetting and editing process—whereas articles in magazines or newspapers are accepted at the discretion of a single editor. In general, the most nuanced and thoroughly researched articles on literary topics are found in scholarly journals: these are what you should most often cite in research essays in the English Department.

Tip: Articles are not listed in QCAT. You must use an index to find articles in scholarly journals and magazines. Then, search for the journal or magazine in QCAT.

Key Indexes

  You are connecting from off-campus. You will be prompted to enter your NetID and password before connecting to a Queen's-only database.
Publication coverage: 1925 - present
Published by the Modern Language Association, this is the standard bibliography for scholarly writing on literature, linguistics, drama, folklore, etc. Indexes over 4,000 international journals, as well as monographs, dissertations, and other publications.
Publication coverage: 1892 - present (some primary texts date from 600 AD)
Access restricted to the Queen's community (4 user limit)
Searchable database of more than 350,000 works of English and American poetry, drama, and prose. Also indexes criticism from The Annual Bibliography of English Language and Literature (ABELL) and MLA International Bibliography (MLAIB), and includes the full text of 104 specialist literature journals.

The Literature Resource Center is a complete literature reference database rich in biographical, bibliographical, and critical content.

Publication coverage: Varies by title
A collection of peer-reviewed electronic journals in the arts, humanities, fine arts, social sciences and mathematics.
Subscription purchased by MacIsaac Memorial Fund in memory of Vera May MacIsaac, BA 1925
Publication coverage: Varies with publication.

Journal Storage, the Scholarly Journal Archive is an electronic journal archive which provides online access to the entire "backrun" of many core academic journals in the humanities, social sciences, business, and law. From Vol. 1 to within 2-5 years of current volume.

In addition to being an archive, JSTOR offers current access to some titles from various publishers.

Other Useful Indexes

  You are connecting from off-campus. You will be prompted to enter your NetID and password before connecting to a Queen's-only database.
Abstracts of English Studies
REF PN2 .A16 (1958 - 1991)
Contains summaries of journal articles and books. Note: does not continue to the present day.
Publication coverage: 1975 - present
Tracks the citation of scholarly articles. Includes citation in books, but not citation of books. While for the humanities it is an imperfect tool for gauging influence of scholarly work, it can be used to grasp the shape of debates or discussions that are not easily described by topic or author.
Publication coverage: Varies with publication
Indexes articles published in and about Canada. Covers Canadian topics including business, politics, literature, history, and news events.
Publication coverage: Indexed articles: 1977 - present ; Full-text articles: 1983 - present
Print holdings: 1920 - 1998: Check QCAT
An interdisciplinary index to over 400 English and French Canadian periodicals indexed by author and subject.
Essay and General Literature Index
REF AI3 .E7 from 1900-
An author and subject index to essays and articles.
Publication coverage: 1967-
Covers all aspects of European medieval studies from 450 to 1500.
BNNA is a bibliographic database covering all aspects of native North American culture, history, and life.
Publication coverage: 17th century - present
Includes biographies, autobiographies, personal narratives, speeches, diaries, letters, oral histories, reference works, manuscripts, and photographs and images of indigenous peoples from all areas of North America.
Publication coverage: 1843 - present
Indexes articles and reviews from over 550 scholarly journals pertaining to the Middle Ages and Renaissance (400-1700).
Bibliography of all manuscripts and editions of John Milton's works and all studies and critical statements concerning his life and works.
Publication coverage: varies; see individual titles
PEP Web provides access to the PEP Web archive, which contains both books and journal articles. The book archive includes the full text of the Standard Edition of the Complete Psychological Works of Sigmund Freud, Freud's letters to his major collaborators and the full text of the major works by Wilfred Bion, Melanie Klein and Donald Winnicott along with other major psychoanalytic authors. The journals in the archive presently include the full text many premier English-language journals in psychoanalysis.
Indexes citations to 45 periodicals of the Victorian period (1824-1900). It indexes thousands of journal articles on a wide range of subjects, including literature, religion, politics, social science, women’s studies, science, and the arts.
REF PR13 .E5Y (1919 - 2001)
Online from 2001-
A review of important articles and books in literary studies in any given year.

Browse by Chronological Period

Browse by Chronological Period

All

  You are connecting from off-campus. You will be prompted to enter your NetID and password before connecting to a Queen's-only database.
Index to books, journal articles, critical editions of literary works, book reviews and collections of essays published world-wide.
Publication coverage: 1975 - present

A&HCI is part of Web of Science. To search this database select A&HCI under Citation Databases at the bottom of the screen. For more information see additional details under Web of Science.

Full-text collection of more than 3,900 English plays, in verse and prose, from the medieval mystery cycles to the comedies of Oscar Wilde.
Publication coverage: Classical antiquity - present
Comprehensive survey of literary ideas and scholars from Plato to modern times.
Subscription purchased by MacIsaac Memorial Fund in memory of Vera May MacIsaac, BA 1925
Publication coverage: Varies with publication.

Journal Storage, the Scholarly Journal Archive is an electronic journal archive which provides online access to the entire "backrun" of many core academic journals in the humanities, social sciences, business, and law. From Vol. 1 to within 2-5 years of current volume.

In addition to being an archive, JSTOR offers current access to some titles from various publishers.

Publication coverage: 1892 - present (some primary texts date from 600 AD)
Access restricted to the Queen's community (4 user limit)
Provides access to English language literature in full text, reference works, bibliographies, web pages and full-text journals.
Publication coverage: 1925 - present
Comprehensive index to scholarly writing on literature, language, linguistics, literary criticism, folklore, drama, literary genres, etc.
Publication coverage: Varies by title
A collection of peer-reviewed electronic journals in the arts, humanities, fine arts, social sciences and mathematics.

Anglo-Saxon and Medieval

  You are connecting from off-campus. You will be prompted to enter your NetID and password before connecting to a Queen's-only database.
Publication coverage: 1473 - 1700
Collection of English language books published prior to 1700.
Publication coverage: 1473 - 1800
Catalogue of early printed books.
Publication coverage: 1967-
IMB covers all subjects relating to the period of 300-1500 in Europe, North Africa, Armenia and the Muslim World.
Publication coverage: 1843 - present
Interdisciplinary index to articles, essays, books and reviews covering the Middle Ages and the Renaissance (i.e. 400 to 1700 AD).
Publication coverage: Classical antiquity - present
Comprehensive survey of literary ideas and scholars from Plato to modern times.
Full-text of the 'He' version of the King James Bible (1611), including all introductory matter, annotations, calendars, genealogies and tables.
Publication coverage: 1100 to 1500
Electronic version of the Middle English Dictionary, with links to electronic texts and extensive bibliographies where available.

Early Modern

  You are connecting from off-campus. You will be prompted to enter your NetID and password before connecting to a Queen's-only database.
Publication coverage: 1473 - 1700
Collection of English language books published prior to 1700.
Full text of more than 200 prose fiction works by English writers from the period 1500-1700.
Publication coverage: 1473 - 1800
Catalogue of early printed books.
Publication coverage: 1843 - present
Interdisciplinary index to articles, essays, books and reviews covering the Middle Ages and the Renaissance (i.e. 400 to 1700 AD).
Publication coverage: From the advent of printing to about 1700
A scholarly resource for original research into the entire lexical content of Early Modern English.
Bibliography of all manuscripts and editions of John Milton's works and all studies and critical statements concerning his life and works.
Publication coverage: 1962 - present
Annotated bibliography of scholarly and popular writing on Shakespeare.

Eighteenth Century

  You are connecting from off-campus. You will be prompted to enter your NetID and password before connecting to a Queen's-only database.
Documenting 200 years of cultural, political, social and historical events, this 17th and 18th Collection includes newspapers, newsbooks, proclamations and pamphlets in searchable digital format.
Full text of more than 1,500 works by American dramatists from the early 18th century up to the beginning of the 20th century.
Full text of over 40,000 poems by American poets from the Colonial Period to the early 20th century.
Full text of more than 700 first editions of American novels and short stories written by major, as well as by a host of minor, writers of the period.
Publication coverage: 1701-1800
Collection of digital reproductions of nearly 150,000 titles and editions published in the UK and the Americas during the 18th century. Includes Eighteenth Century Collections Online, Part II: New Editions.
Full text of 96 complete works by fiction writers from the British Isles, from the period 1700-1780. Key figures covered include Daniel Defoe, Henry Fielding, Eliza Haywood, Samuel Richardson, Tobias Smollett, Laurence Sterne and Jonathan Swift.
Full-text access to rare journals printed between 1685 and 1813.
Publication coverage: 1715 - present (with supplementary material back to 1688)
Full-text access to British parliamentary papers.

Nineteenth Century

  You are connecting from off-campus. You will be prompted to enter your NetID and password before connecting to a Queen's-only database.
Full text of more than 1,500 works by American dramatists from the early 18th century up to the beginning of the 20th century.
Full text of more than 700 first editions of American novels and short stories written by major, as well as by a host of minor, writers of the period.
Publication coverage: 1830 - 1898
Digitized facsimile of an early American women's magazine which was intended to entertain, inform, and educate the women of America.
Publication coverage: 1851-2009; Index 1851-1993
Digital reproduction of the complete newspaper. Historical New York Times (1851-2009) with Index (1851-1993) "provides search capability using subject terms and topics for focused and targeted results in combination with searchable full text, full page, and article-level images from the Historical New York Times."
Full text of 250 British and Irish novels from the period 1782 to 1903.
Publication coverage: 1800-1900
A collection of British magazines, journals and specialty newspapers which provides an in-depth view of British life in the Victorian age. Series I - New Readerships: Women's, Children's, Humor and Leisure/Sport charts the rapid rise of publishing in a reading culture expanding through a rise in literacy and leisure and an explosion of sports and hobbies. Series II - Empire: Travel and Anthropology, Economics, Missionary and Colonial, covers the expansion of the Empire, addressing the economic as well as the non-mercantile aspects of British expansionism.
The MacIsaac Memorial Fund and the K. Phyllis Wilson Library Endowment Fund
Full-text primary resources (monographs, newspapers, pamphlets, manuscripts, ephemera, maps, statistics, and more) of Photography: The World Through the Lens; Science, Technology and Medicine, 1780-1925; Europe and Africa: Commerce, Christianity, Civilization, and Conquest; and Women: Transnational Networks.
Publication coverage: Pre-1925

Index to English-language journals published from the late 1700s to the early 1900s.

A collection of works, in both original language and English translation, written by seminal figures in the humanities and social sciences. Subjects covered include the history of political thought and theory, education, religious studies, economics, classics, history and philosophy of science, germanic studies and sociology.
Publication coverage: varies; see individual titles
PEP Web provides access to the PEP Web archive, which contains both books and journal articles. The book archive includes the full text of the Standard Edition of the Complete Psychological Works of Sigmund Freud, Freud's letters to his major collaborators and the full text of the major works by Wilfred Bion, Melanie Klein and Donald Winnicott along with other major psychoanalytic authors. The journals in the archive presently include the full text many premier English-language journals in psychoanalysis.
Full-text of The Times (of London).
Indexes citations to 45 periodicals of the Victorian period (1824-1900). It indexes thousands of journal articles on a wide range of subjects, including literature, religion, politics, social science, women’s studies, science, and the arts.

Twentieth Century

  You are connecting from off-campus. You will be prompted to enter your NetID and password before connecting to a Queen's-only database.
Publication coverage: 1851-2009; Index 1851-1993
Digital reproduction of the complete newspaper. Historical New York Times (1851-2009) with Index (1851-1993) "provides search capability using subject terms and topics for focused and targeted results in combination with searchable full text, full page, and article-level images from the Historical New York Times."
Publication coverage: varies; see individual titles
PEP Web provides access to the PEP Web archive, which contains both books and journal articles. The book archive includes the full text of the Standard Edition of the Complete Psychological Works of Sigmund Freud, Freud's letters to his major collaborators and the full text of the major works by Wilfred Bion, Melanie Klein and Donald Winnicott along with other major psychoanalytic authors. The journals in the archive presently include the full text many premier English-language journals in psychoanalysis.
A collection of poetry written by the most important and influential African American poets of the twentieth century.
A collection of 50,000 poems by over 300 American poets writing between 1900 and 1999, providing readers with a unique survey of the movements, schools and distinctive voices of modern and contemporary American poetry.
Full text of the poetry of over 280 poets from 1900 to the present day. Covers primarily authors originating from or based in the British Isles but also includes poetry in English by selected major Commonwealth authors and translations of non-English-language poetry for major figures from countries within the scope of the collection.
The first ever scholarly, primary source database focusing on adult comic books and graphic novels. Beginning with the first underground comix from the 1960’s to the works of modern sequential artists, this collection will contain more than 75,000 pages of comics and graphic novels, along with 25,000 pages of interviews, criticism, and journal articles that document the continual growth and evolution of this artform.

Books

Search QCAT, the library catalogue, to find literary works, books about literary works and authors (e.g. books of criticism, biographies, bibliographies, concordances, literary glossaries, dictionaries, and encyclopedias) and scholarly journals. QCAT does not list the articles within journals or individual chapters within books; to search for these, see " Article Indexes."

To find books on your English topic in the Queen's Library, search QCAT, the library catalogue by author, title, subject headings or keyword.

Consider these search methods to find literary criticism in QCAT.

  1. To find critical writings about an author's works, search QCAT by subject heading
    dickens charles
    By doing a subject heading search, you will see a variety of subdivisions that can be used with an author. For example:
    Dickens Charles, 1812-1870
    Dickens Charles, 1812-1870--Bibliography
    Dickens Charles, 1812-1870--Characters
    Dickens Charles, 1812-1870--Criticism and interpretation
    You can also do a keyword search. Whereas subject headings are formal descriptors used by librarians, keywords are terms that you associate with your topic. Think of the words that best describe your topic and then connect words with AND, OR or NOT. For example:
    dickens and chancery
  2. To find critical writings about a specific work, you can search QCAT by either keyword or subject heading. For example:

    To find criticisms on Coleridge's Rime of the Ancient Mariner, search QCAT by keyword:
    coleridge and mariner and criticism
    or, search by subject heading (Coleridge) and look at hits retrieved under the general subject heading (Coleridge, Samuel) and specific subdivisions.
    Coleridge Samuel
    Coleridge Samuel, 1772-1834--Criticism and interpretation
    Coleridge Samuel, 1772-1834. Rime of the Ancient Mariner
  3. To find books concerning a particular mode or genre in a particular language or period, search the mode or genre by subject heading. This will give you a list of more specific subject headings from which you can choose. For example:

    To find works discussing English literature in the 18th century, type:
    english literature 18th century
    To find works on English pastoral poetry, type:
    pastoral poetry
    Note the subject headings and subdivisions, for example:
    Pastoral poetry, English
    Pastoral poetry, English--Early works to 1800
    Pastoral poetry, English--History and criticism
    Another approach is to use keyword searching. Think of the words that best describe your topic and then connect words with AND, OR or NOT. For example:
    women and "english literature" and history
    prostitutes and victorian and literature
    british and novel

    Select useful titles and look at the complete record. Use the subject headings to provide more keyword ideas or as individual searches themselves.

  4. To find works on specific movements or groups of writers, do a keyword search:
    "Bloomsbury group"
    "lake poets"
  5. To find biographies of an author, do a subject heading search for the author and then look for the subdivision "biography":
    Chaucer
    Chaucer, Geoffrey, d. 1400--Biography
Once you have found call numbers for a few promising books, go to the stacks, where you will find other related titles.

Dictionaries & Encyclopedias

Language

Encyclopedias may have an important role in the early stages of your research. They provide a general overview of a subject, and aim to present objective data (names, dates, and facts that can be independently verified). They may help you to identify areas of controversy or special interest from which you can pursue further research and interpretive criticism.

Dictionaries are useful for more than just looking up definitions. A historical dictionary like the Oxford English Dictionary includes full etymologies, and dated quotations to show shifting meanings over time.

Specialized dictionaries and encyclopedias provide information on specific dialects, disciplines, or historical periods.

The Oxford English Dictionary
Online
REF PE1625.O87 1989t

The OED, as it is known, is the most comprehensive and authoritative dictionary of the English language. As a citations dictionary, it quotes sentences used by authors to illustrate the history of usage beginning with the earliest known usage of each word.

The Oxford Dictionary of English Etymology
REF PE1580.05

A scholarly, comprehensive dictionary on the history and origin of English words.

Oxford Reference Online
Online

For dictionaries, thesauruses, quotations, literary terms, and companions to literature. ORO contains the full text of more than 100 dictionary, language and subject reference books. Some of the resources most useful to literary study include The Concise Oxford Dictionary, The Oxford Companion to Classical Literature, The Dictionary of Art, The Oxford Companion to British Literature, The Oxford Companion to Canadian Literature, The Oxford Companion to American Literature, and companions to numerous other literatures.

Guide to Canadian English Usage
PE3235.F44 1997t

A guide to Canadian vocabulary, expressions, and usage, compiled by Queen's University's Strathey Language Unit.

LEME: Lexicons of Early Modern English

A scholarly resource for original research into the entire lexical content of Early Modern English.

The Middle English Dictionary
Online

A comprehensive guide to the English language from 1100-1500, including exhaustive citations. Available online through the Middle English Compendium.

The Dictionary of the Scots Language
Online

Includes both The Dictionary of the Older Scottish Tongue and The Scottish National Dictionary (10 volumes shelved in Reference at PE2106.S4)

A Dictionary of Slang and Unconventional English
REF PE3721.P3 1984t

Standard source for definitions of English slang words and phrases covering both contemporary and historical usage.

The Bedford Glossary of Critical and Literary Terms. 2nd ed.
REF PN44.5 .M86 2003

The Oxford Dictionary of Literary Terms (3 ed.)
Online
REF PN41 .C67 2008

Abrams, M. H. Glossary of Literary Terms
REF PN41.A184 2005

Lanham, Richard. A Handlist of Rhetorical Terms
REF PE1445.A2 L3 1991

Cuddon, J.E., & C.E. Preston. Dictionary of Literary Terms and Literary Theory
REF PN41.C83 1998

Fowler, Roger. Dictionary of Modern Critical Terms
REF PN41.D4794 1987t

Literature

A selection of specialized dictionaries/encyclopedias is listed below.

To find others, search QCAT using keywords of your topic combined with "encyclopedias" or "dictionaries."

"jane austen" and encyclopedias shakespeare and dictionaries

Also see Appendix A to the MLA Handbook, which lists "Selected Reference Works by Field," e.g. Art, Education, History, Language and Literature and Religion.

Oxford Reference Online
Online

For dictionaries, thesauruses, quotations, literary terms, and companions to literature. ORO contains the full text of more than 100 dictionary, language and subject reference books. Some of the resources most useful to literary study include The Concise Oxford Dictionary, The Oxford Companion to Classical Literature, The Dictionary of Art, The Oxford Companion to British Literature, The Oxford Companion to Canadian Literature, The Oxford Companion to American Literature.

Cambridge Guide to Literature in English
REF PR85.C29 1993

The Concise Oxford Companion to English Literature
Online (2003, 2nd edition)
REF PR19.D732 1996t

Oxford Companion to English Literature
Online
REF PR19.O94 2000

Handbook to Literature
REF PN41.H355 2006

The Feminist Companion to Literature in English : Women Writers from the Middle Ages to the Present
REF PN471.F45 1990t

The Columbia Dictionary of Modern Literary and Cultural Criticism
REF PN81.C656 1995t

Offers a clear and succinct explanation of terms, groups, and schools of thought.

General Encyclopedias

New Encyclopædia Britannica
Online (most recent)
REF AE5.E363 Lederman Law Library (15th ed., 2003)
REF AE5.E363 Stauffer Library (15th ed., 1997)

A general encyclopedia, so don't expect extensive coverage or entries on more obscure authors. However, it does provide good overview information on major authors, and articles may give information on where to find the more influential criticism.

Encyclopædia Britannica
REF AE5.E56

This 11th edition is still useful to humanities students for topics concerning the nineteenth century or in which nineteenth-century scholarship was strong.

The following is a very selective list of examples of the library's numerous resources for specialized literature.

The Alexander Pope Encyclopedia
REF PR3632.R64 2004

A Jane Austen Encyclopedia
REF PR4036.A28 1998

Mary Shelley Encyclopedia
REF PR5398.A2M67

Shakespeare: an Oxford Guide
REF PR2976.S333 2003

Virginia Woolf A to Z
REF PR6045.O72Z729 1995

Other Disciplines

Philosophy

The Cambridge Dictionary of Philosophy
REF B41.C35 1999

The Encyclopedia of Philosophy
REF B41.E5 1972

The Oxford Companion to Philosophy
Online
REF B51.O94 1995

Mythology

The Gods of the Greeks
BL781.K363 1974

Dictionary of Classical Mythology
REF BL715.G713 1987

Mythology & Folklore
Online

Oxford Classical Dictionary
REF DE5.O9 1970

History

The Oxford Companion to British History
Online
REF DA34.O93 2002

Dictionary of Ancient History
REF DE5.D53 1994t

Dictionary of Eighteenth-Century World History
REF D286.D53 1994t

Dictionary of Modern History, 1789-1945
REF D205.P34 1962 (Lederman Law Library)

A Dictionary of British History, 1815-1973
DA529.H83

Penguin Dictionary of Twentieth Century History
D419.P29 1983

Dictionary of Twentieth-Century History, 1914-1990
REF D419.T44 1992

The Timetables of History: a Horizontal Linkage of People and Events
REF D11.G78 1982

Book Reviews

A book review is an evaluative essay concerning the strengths and weaknesses of a published book. Book reviews can be useful for assessing a book's critical importance and its relation to other books in its field.

For contemporary reviews of works published in earlier centuries, see also History of Criticism .

  You are connecting from off-campus. You will be prompted to enter your NetID and password before connecting to a Queen's-only database.
Publication coverage: 1965-present
Print holdings: 1965-2011
Indexes English language book reviews. Search by title, author, journal, review type, length of review, reading level of book, or publication format.
Canadian Book Review Annual Canadian resource
REF Z1035 .A1C3t from 1975-
Publication coverage: Varies with publication
An interdisciplinary index that includes book reviews cited in major newspapers and 350 Canadian journals. Search by keyword combing the following three words: the author's last name; a word from the title; and the word review?
e.g. review? and atwood and robber
This search string requests reviews of Margaret Atwood's novel The Robber Bride.
Publication coverage: Indexed articles: 1977 - present ; Full-text articles: 1983 - present
Print holdings: 1920 - 1998: Check QCAT
An interdisciplinary index to Canadian periodicals with special headings for book reviews, poems, moving picture reviews, Canadian drama, and short stories.
An Index to Book Reviews in the Humanities
REF Z1035 .A1I38 (1961-1990)
Strong coverage of academic and non-fiction books; international in scope.
Note: does not continue to the present day.
Publication coverage: 1850 - present

Includes complete runs of 12 major American journals that regularly contain important articles on politics and public policy, covering the spectrum from liberal to conservative.

Publication coverage: 1983 - present
Print holdings: REF AI3.R2 from 1900- (Readers' Guide to Periodical Literature)
REF AP3.R496 (1890-1922) (Nineteenth Century Readers' Guide to Periodical Literature)
The last section in each volume lists book reviews by author.

See also the guide Find and Write Book Reviews.

Biographies

Consult biographical dictionaries to get brief information about people, dates and events. Biographical dictionaries often contain lists of a writer's complete works, as well as lists of related secondary sources and criticism, including book-length biographies.

Two categories of biographical dictionary are broadly useful for literary study. National biographies contain articles concerning historically important residents of a particular country; literary biographies collect the biographies of important writers. You can find specialized biographical dictionaries by doing a subject-heading search for biography in QCAT, e.g.

Biography 20th century Dictionaries

To determine if the Library owns a book-length biography of a person, perform a subject search in QCAT. Enter [last name, first name], e.g.

twain mark

You may wish to consult titles that just have the author's name as subject heading as well as those with subdivisions: Biography, Correspondence, Diaries, Family, Interviews.

Another approach to finding biographies in QCAT is to perform a keyword search using the term "biography" (in the subject field) and the name of the person. However, this method will not return a list of all the books that contain biographical information on your subject.

For more sources, see Biographical Resources.

National Biographies

  You are connecting from off-campus. You will be prompted to enter your NetID and password before connecting to a Queen's-only database.
A work in progress, this dictionary currently includes individuals whose date of death or last activity occurred between the years 1000 to 1930.
Dictionary of American Biography
REF E176.D5
Twenty-volume set containing scholarly articles and bibliographies about prominent Americans who died prior to 1927. Seven supplements bring the coverage up to 1965.
Publication coverage: 400 BC - early 2000s AD
Print holdings: REF DA28 .O95 2004 Access restricted to the Queen's community (6 user limit)
Revised edition of the Dictionary of National Biography. A definitive resource for British and Commonwealth biography, comprising 50,000 biographies written by over 10,000 contributors. Print covers from the earliest times to the year 2000 (60 volumes). Online covers from earliest times to 2001.

Literary Biographies

Dictionary of Literary Biography (series)
REF Call Number varies

A collection of essays on the lives and careers of authors from all eras and genres as well as critical responses to their work. To locate the individual volumes of this multi-volume set, do a title search in QCAT for Dictionary of Literary Biography.

Contemporary Authors
REF Z1224.C59 Contemporary Authors First Revision, Vols. 1-44 (1962-1980)
REF Z1224.C76 Contemporary Authors Original, Vols. 45(1981-)-current
REF Z1224.C592t Contemporary Authors New Revision Series, vols.1(1981)-current

Provides bio-bibliographical information about living and deceased writers of fiction, nonfiction, poetry, drama, motion pictures, and television.

Initial biographies are published in Contemporary Authors Original. Updated biographies are published in Contemporary Authors New Revision Series.

Use the Contemporary Authors Cumulative Index (REF Z1224 .C76) to locate biographies in all the volumes.

The Feminist Companion to Literature in English. Women Writers from the Middle Ages to the Present
REF PN471.F45 1990t

A 1200-page compendium of biographical sketches for more than 2700 women writing in English, including those from African, Asian, Caribbean, Canadian and other literary traditions. Includes some topical entries and sources for further reading.

An Encyclopedia of British Women Writers
REF PR111.E54 1998

Biographies and secondary bibliographies are included. Thematic issues and critical reception are discussed.

A Biographical Dictionary of English Women Writers, 1580–1720
REF PR113.B46 1990t

Alphabetically arranged by name, provides short biographical entries, as well as lists of anonymous and pseudonymous texts, false ascriptions, and several critical appendices on such topics as Quaker women writers and women in the book trade.

A Dictionary of British and American Women Writers, 1660–1800
REF PR113 D5 1985

Brief biographical signed entries which names major publications but provides limited references to critical appraisals.

Something About the Author Online

Provides illustrated biographical profiles of approximately 75 children's authors and artists discussing the author's career, interests and motivation, among other topics.

Bibliographies

To find scholarly articles, the first route is via indexes: see Article Indexes & Databases.

Bibliographies are useful for finding the most important publications on a given topic. Annotated bibliographies provide brief descriptions of the items they list. They range from the general to the specific. The most general are library catalogs (QCAT) and union catalogs (e.g. Amicus, the National Union Catalog, the British Library General Catalogue of Printed Books to 1975 to name a few).

More specialized bibliographies may be more useful for seeking works on a given topic. For more bibliographies, see those listed under Genre Guides and History of Criticism.

To find bibliographies suited to your needs, search QCAT by keyword by entering "bibliography" or "reference guide" and another keyword.

Specialized Bibliographies

Watson, George & I.R. Wilson, eds. The New Cambridge Bibliography of English Literature.
REF Z2011 .N45

In addition to listing works by and about British authors, the five-volume NCBEL, which was published between 1969 and 1977, lists more general works such as bibliographies, literary histories, and surveys, special studies, memoirs, and works on related topics such as book production and publishing, theatre, history, philosophy, and religion.

Watson, George, ed. The Shorter New Cambridge Bibliography of English Literature.
REF Z2011 .S417 .1981

Condenses the NCBEL by focussing on major authors, and listing critical works more selectively.

Cox, Michael, ed. The Oxford Chronology of English Literature.
REF Z2011 .O98 2002

Based on The Annals of English Literature (1935), this work arranges select lists of 30,000 significant works of literature by year of publication, from 1474 to 2000.

The Eighteenth Century: a Current Bibliography, 1975- .
REF Z2012 .E34t

Issued annually, these bibliographies of criticism and scholarship continue an earlier series begun in 1926. Sections in the most recent numbers include Printing and Bibliographic Studies; Historical, Social, and Economic Studies; Philosophy, Science, and Religion; Fine Arts; Foreign Literatures and Languages; British Literatures; New World Literatures and Languages.

Oxford Bibliographies Online

Lists books, journals, primary documents, web resources, and multimedia in various discipline-based subject modules including Victorian Literature.

World Shakespeare Bibliography Online

The World Shakespeare Bibliography Online is an extensive database of Shakespeare scholarship and theatrical productions published or produced since 1960 to the present. Search Guide

(see also "Primary Sources")

Research Guides and Bibliographies of Bibliographies

Harner, James L. Literary Research Guide: An Annotated Listing of Reference Sources in English Literary Studies. 4th ed.
REF Z2011 .H34 1998.

Lists and describes general and specialized bibliographies as well as research handbooks, literary handbooks, guides to manuscripts and archives, indexes, databases, periodicals, and works on literary genres and national literatures in English.

Marcuse, Michael J. A Reference Guide for English Studies.
REF PR56 .M37 1990

Covers major library catalogs; national bibliographies; serial publications; archives and manuscripts; American and English literature by time period; and the profession of English.

Howard-Hill, T. H. Bibliography of British Literary Bibliographies. 2nd ed.
REF Z2011 .A1 H68 1987t

A good source for finding specialized bibliographies of scholarship about authors, literary subjects, forms and genres, literary periods, regional literatures, and various aspects of book production and publishing.

Concordances & Quotations

Concordances

A concordance is a comprehensive index of the words used in a text or a body of texts. Ordinarily it will not only index but also cite all passages in which a given word occurs. It is therefore useful for locating a passage that you cannot otherwise find, for discovering similar passages, or for establishing the frequency with which particular words are used.

Concordances exist for the Bible, for major poets, and even for some prose works. Compendia of famous quotations, such as Bartlett's, also function as concordances. Concordances can be important research tools for assessing themes, recurrent literary ideas, devices and tropes, and so forth.

To find concordances, search QCAT using a keyword search, e.g.

concordances and shakespeare

The following list is very selective and is intended chiefly to furnish examples.

Spevack, Marvin. A Complete and Systemic Concordance to the Works of Shakespeare. (1968-1980)
REF PR2892.S6

Oizumi, Akio. A Lexical Concordance to the Works of Geoffrey Chaucer. (2003)
REF PR1941.L49 2003

Bedford, Emmett G. A Concordance to the Poems of Alexander Pope. (1974)
REF PR3632.B4

Foltz, William Douglas. A Concordance to the Sermons of Gerard Manley Hopkins. (1989)
REF PR4803.H44 Z627 1989

James Strong et al. New Strong's Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible. (1984)
REF BS425.S8 1984

Kassis, Hanna E. A Concordance of the Qur'an. (1983)
REF BP133.K37 1983

For a more complete list of religious concordances, go to the Religion - Concordances subject guide.

The web abounds with texts that may be used in a fashion similar to concordances; simply use keywords and phrases to search the electronic text. You must consider the scholarly integrity of online texts as carefully as you would consider the merits of using different editions of the same text. Consult your professor, and ask: is the source of the web text documented properly?

The following websites furnish examples of reliable editions of online texts with concordance-like features:

Locke's "An Essay Concerning Human Understanding," (Indexed by Tze-wan Kwan and Chong-fuk Lau, Chinese University of Hong Kong)

The William Blake Archive (Edited by Morris Eaves, University of Rochester; Robert Essick, University of California, Riverside; and Joseph Viscomi, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill) allows searches of Blake's writings and images.

Quotations

Use an index of quotations to check the accuracy or the origin of a familiar quotation. Use a subject search to find inspiring or provocative quotations on a particular topic, as a warm-up to writing an essay or giving a seminar.

Barlett's Familiar Quotations
REF PN6081.B2 1968

Provides keyword concordance and author indexes to quotations from literary works, sacred writing and other sources worldwide.

Oxford Dictionary of Quotations
REF PN6080.O95 1996t

Search for familiar quotations in English using keywords, exact phrases, author, and Boolean and pattern searches.

The Quote Sleuth: A Manual for the Tracer of Lost Quotations
REF PN6081.S44 1990

A guide to tracing unidentified, misidentified, modified, or mistranscribed quotations.

Genre Guides

"Genre" is the French word for "type," "genus," "style," "way," or "kind." In literary studies genre refers to traditional classifications such as "drama," "novel," and "lyric," or (within the larger genre of drama) "tragedy" and "comedy."

For the purposes of literary study it is important to know not only basic concepts of genre but also the traditions and conventions of the specific genres relevant to the work in question. But genre criticism is not just a matter of fitting works into their "proper" genres, for a work may cross or combine genres or play against them, and in fact the exercise of reading a work as an instance of a less than obvious genre, e.g. of reading a novel as an epic or tragedy or as a conduct books may enable you to see aspects of the text you may not otherwise notice.

Genre Guides

On Genre in General

Dubrow, Heather. Genre
PN45.5.D8 1982

Lucid overview of genre theory with references to further studies.

Rosmarin, Adena. The Power of Genre
PN45.5.R67 1985

This "pragmatic" theory of genre questions whether genre classifications can be correct in any absolute sense and stresses the explanatory power of mis-classifications. Examples emphasize dramatic monologue.

Series on Specific Genres

"The Critical Idiom" series, published by Methuen between 1969 and 1985, includes useful introductory guides to specific literary genres, modes, and forms. Titles in the series include (but are not limited to) "The Absurd," "Allegory," "Ballad," "Biography," "Comedy," "Comedy of Manners," "Drama," "Dramatic Monologue," "Epic," "Farce," "Genre," "Lyric," "Melodrama," "Ode," "Pastoral," "Picaresque," "Realism," "Romance," "Satire," "Short Story," "Sonnet," "Tragedy," "Tragicomedy." To find specific titles in this series through QCAT, type "critical idiom" and search by "series/uniform title."

The similar "New Accents" series, also published by Methuen between 1977 and 1987, includes further titles such as "Fantasy," "Literature and Propaganda," "Metafiction," "Narrative Fiction," "Science Fiction." To find specific titles in this series through QCAT, type "new accents" and search by "series/uniform title.

Drama

The First King's Theatre, London
(image from the British Library Online)

Encyclopedias and Dictionaries

Trapido, Joel et al., eds. An International Dictionary of Theatre Language.
REF PN2035.I5 1985

The most comprehensive dictionary of its kind.

Banham, Martin, ed. The Cambridge Guide to Theatre. New ed.
REF PN2035.C27 1995

Esslin, Martin. intro. The Encyclopedia of World Theater: with 420 Illustrations and an Index of Play Titles.
PN2035.E52 1977

Hartnoll, Phyllis. The Oxford Companion to the Theatre. 4th ed.
REF PN2035.O9 1983

Hochman, Stanley, et al., eds. Encyclopedia of World Drama: An International Reference Work in 5 Volumes. Mcgraw-Hill, 2nd. ed.
REF PN1625.M3 1984

Guides to Primary Sources

Ottemiller, John H. Ottemiller's Index to Plays in Collections: An Author and Title Index to Plays Appearing in Collections Published Between 1900 and 1985. 7th ed., revised and enlarged by Billie M. Connor & Helene G. Mochedlover
REF Z5781 .O8 1988

Lists English-language plays.

Sample, Gordon. The Drama Scholars' Index to Plays and Filmscripts: A Guide to Plays and Filmscripts in Selected Anthologies, Series, and Periodicals.
2 vols. (1974-1980)
REF Z5781 .S17

Useful for locating plays in English and other languages.

West, Dorothy Herbert, et al., eds. Play Index (1949-)
REF PN6112.5 .Z99 P5 (1949-1997)

Lists English-language plays of all periods published since 1949. Annotated with plot summaries, etc. Includes a subject-index.

Compilations of Criticism and Guides to Secondary Sources

Gale Information Guide Library series:

  • English Drama to 1660, Excluding Shakespeare: A Guide to Information Sources. ed. Frieda Elaine Penninger (1976).
    REF Z2014 .D7P46
  • English Drama, 1660-1800: A Guide to Information Sources. ed. Frederick M. Link (1976).
    REF Z2014 .D7 L55
  • English Drama and Theatre, 1800-1900: A Guide to Information Sources. (1978).
    REF Z2014 .D7 C72
  • Afro-American Poetry and Drama, 1760-1975: A Guide to Information Sources. ed. William P. French (1979).
    REF Z1229 .N39 A37
  • American Drama to 1900: A Guide to Information Sources. ed. Walter J. Meserve (1980).
    REF Z1231 .D7 M45
  • Modern Drama in America and England, 1950-1970: A Guide to Information Sources. ed. Richard Hough Harris.
    REF Z1231 .D7 H36 1982

These volumes begin with lists of general and historical sources; separate entries for dramatists list resources including works, letters, biographies, and critical studies.

Dictionary of Literary Biography (Gale British Dramatists) Series:

  • Elizabethan Dramatists. ed. Fredson Bowers.
    REF PR651 .E48 1987
  • Jacobean and Caroline Dramatists. ed. Fredson Bowers.
    REF PR671 .J33 1987
  • Restoration and Eighteenth-Century Dramatists, First Series. [Dramatists Born 1621-1666], ed. Paula R. Backscheider.
    REF PR701 .R4 1989
  • Restoration and Eighteenth-Century Dramatists, Second Series. [Dramatists Born 1670-1727], ed. Paula R. Backscheider.
    REF PR701 .R42 1989
  • Modern British Dramatists, 1900-1945. ed. Stanley Weintraub.
    REF PR623 .M63 1982
  • British Dramatists since World War II. ed. Stanley Weintraub. 2 vols.
    REF PR106 .B74 1982

These illustrated volumes in the Dictionary of Literary Biography series provide a brief critical biography, a list of primary works and productions, and a very selective list of secondary works for each dramatist.

Corbin, Peter, and Douglas Sedg. An Annotated Critical Bibliography of Jacobean and Caroline Comedy (Excluding Shakespeare).
REF Z2014 .D7 C75 1988t

Fordyce, Rachel. Caroline Drama: A Bibliographic History of Criticism. 2nd ed.
REF Z2014 .D7 F67 1992

King, Kimball. Twenty Modern British Playwrights: A Bibliography 1956 to 1976. (1977)
REF Z2014 .D7 K47

Lidman, Mark J. Studies in Jacobean Drama, 1973-1984: An Annotated Bibliography.
REF Z2014 .D7 L5 1986

Riggs, Thomas, ed. Contemporary Dramatists. 6th ed.
REF PR737 .C57 1999

A biographical outline, a brief critical essay, and lists of primary and secondary works for each of 433 living English-language dramatists.

Stein, Rita. Major Modern Dramatists.
REF PN1861 .M27 1984

Excerpts of criticism on Western playwrights of international renown from the late 19th and 20th centuries.

Trudeau, Lawrence J., ed. Drama Criticism: Criticism of the Most Significant and Widely Studied Dramatic Works from All the World's Literatures. (1991- )
REF PN1721 .D72t

Excerpts of criticism on the most frequently studied playwrights of all time periods and nationalities. Holdings: vol. 1 only.

Prose Fiction

Frequently Recommended Secondary Sources

Allen, Walter. The English Novel: A Short Critical History. (1954)
PR821 .A4

Baker, Ernest Albert. The History of the English Novel. vol. 1-7, 9-10 (1924-36)
PR821 .B16

Old but still useful.

Bakhtin, M. M. The Dialogic Imagination: Four Essays. Trans. Caryl Emerson and ed. Michael Holquist. (1981)
PN3331 .B2513

A major theoretical work on the "dialogic" nature of novelistic discourse.

Booth, Wayne C. The Rhetoric of Fiction. 2nd ed.
PN3355 .B597 1983

A standard work on point of view and narrative technique.

Kettle, Arnold. An Introduction to the English Novel. Rev. ed. 2 vols.
PR821 .K4 1968

Emphasizes relations between fiction and social history.

Lodge, David. Language of Fiction: Essays in Criticism and Verbal Analysis of the English Novel. 2nd ed. (1984)
PR821 .L6 1984

First published in 1966. Part 1 addresses modern critics and "problems in criticism"; part 2 consists of essays on Austen, Charlotte Bronte, Dickens, Hardy, James, Wells, and Kingsley Amis.

Van Ghent, Dorothy Bendon. The English Novel, Form and Function. (1953)
PR821 .V25

A major work of formalist criticism.

Watt, Ian P. The Rise of the Novel: Studies in Defoe, Richardson, and Fielding.
PR3406 .W34 1963

A seminal historical study of realist fiction.

Bibliographies (arranged chronologically)

Esdaile, Arundell. A List of English Tales and Prose Romances Printed before 1740. (1971)
REF Z2014 .F4 E8 1971

Summers, Montague. A Gothic Bibliography (1941)
PR861.2 S9

Not comprehensive, but lists works ranging from 1728 to 1916.

Raven, James. British Fiction, 1750-1770: A Chronological Checklist...
REF Z2014 .F4 R34 1987

Intended as a comprehensive listing, including reprints and publications with no surviving copies.

Garside, Peter et al., eds. The English Novel 1770-1829: A Bibliographical Survey of Prose Fiction Published in the British Isles. 2 vols.
REF Z2014 .F4 E52 2000

Attempts to "list all novels in the period whether or not surviving in extant copies, their publication and pricing details, and contemporary review information."

Orr, Leonard. A Catalogue Checklist of English Prose Fiction, 1750-1800. (1979)
Z2014 .F4 O77

Daims, Diva and Janet Grimes. Toward a Feminist Tradition: An Annotated Bibliography of Novels in English by Women, 1891-1920.
REF Z2013.5 .W6 D34 1982

Lists and describes over 3400 novels. Organized alphabetically by author, with a title index.

Wright, Lyle Henry. American Fiction, 1774-1850: A Contribution Toward a Bibliography. Rev. ed.
REF Z1231 .F4 W9 1948

Wright, Lyle Henry. American Fiction, 1851-1875: A Contribution Toward a Bibliography. (1957)
REF Z1231 .F4 W92

Wright, Lyle Henry. American Fiction, 1876-1900: A Contribution Toward a Bibliography. (1966)
REF Z1231 .F4 W93

Smith, Geoffrey D. American Fiction, 1901-1925: A Bibliography.
REF Z1231 .F4 S6 1997

Includes indexes of titles, illustrators, publishers, and pseudonyms.

Anthologies and Compilations

Kelly, Gary et al., eds. Varieties of Female Gothic. 6 vols.
PR830 .T3 V28 2002

Reproduces gothic tales by women writers under headings of Enlightenment, Terror, Street, Erotic, Historical, and Orientalist Gothic.

Maunder, Andrew et al., eds. Varieties of Women's Sensation Fiction, 1855-1890 6 vols.
PR878 S44 V37 2004

Vol. I, Sensationalism and the Sensation Debate, reprints documents from the Victorian controversy over the "sensation novels"; the successive volumes reproduce "forgotten" novels in the genre.

Guides and Compilations of Secondary Sources

Comprehensive

Palmer, Helen H. English Novel Explication: Criticisms to 1972. 1973 REF Z2014 .F5P26

References to critical interpretations of individual works by major authors. See also the supplements (1976-), under the same call number.

Dictionary of Literary Biography (Gale British Novelists) Series:

  • British Novelists, 1660-1800.
    ed. Martin C. Battestin, 2 vols.
    REF PR851 .B7 1985
  • British Romantic Novelists, 1789-1832.
    ed. Bradford K. Mudge.
    REF PR861 .B74 1992
  • Victorian Novelists before 1885.
    ed. Ira B. Nadel and William E. Fredeman.
    REF PR871 .V55 1983
  • Victorian Novelists after 1885.
    ed. Ira B. Nadel and William E. Fredeman.
    REF PR871 .V54 1983
  • British Novelists, 1890-1929: Traditionalists.
    ed. Thomas F. Staley.
    REF PR881 .B724 1985
  • British Novelists, 1890-1929: Modernists.
    ed. Thomas F. Staley.
    REF PR851 .B73 1985
  • British Novelists, 1930-1959.
    ed. Bernard Oldsey, 2 vols.
    ï REF PR881 .B725 1983
  • British Novelists since 1960.
    ed. Jay L. Halio, 2 vols.
    REF PR881 .B73 1983
  • British Novelists since 1960, 2nd series.
    ed. Merritt Moseley.
    REF PR881 .B732 1998

These illustrated volumes in the Dictionary of Literary Biography series provide a brief critical biography, a bibliography of primary works, and a very selective list of secondary works for each novelist.

May, Charles E. et al., eds. Critical Survey of Short Fiction. 2nd ed. 7 vols.
REF PN3321 .C7 2001

Rogers, Jane et al., eds. Good Fiction Guide
REF PN3503 .G66 2001

Specific Periods (chronological)

Harner, James L. English Renaissance Prose Fiction, 1500-1660: An Annotated Bibliography of Criticism. (1978).
Z2014 .F4 H37

Letellier, Robert Ignatius. The English Novel, 1660-1700: An Annotated Bibliography.
REF Z2014 .F4 L46 1997

Beasley, Jerry C. English Fiction, 1660-1800: A Guide to Information Sources. (1978).
REF Z2014 .F5B42

Begins with lists of general and historical sources; entries for 29 fiction writers list resources including works, letters, biographies, and critical studies.

Hahn, H. George and Carl Behm III. The Eighteenth-Century British Novel and its Background: An Annotated Bibliography and Guide to Topics. (1985).
REF Z2014 .F4 H33 1985

Begins with an extensive index of subjects, themes, and critical issues in eighteenth-century fiction, with each entry in the index listing relevant works in the bibliographies. Each entry in the bibliographies (which list critical studies of eighteenth-century backgrounds, of the eighteenth-century novel in general, and of major and minor novelists) cites the relevant headings in the index in lieu of fuller annotation.

McNutt, Dan J. The Eighteenth Century Gothic Novel: An Annotated Bibliography of Criticism and Selected Texts. (1975).
REF Z2014 .F5M3

Spector, Robert Donald. The English Gothic: A Bibliographic Guide to Writers from Horace Walpole to Mary Shelley.
REF Z2014 .H67S66 1984

Advice on critical sources in the form of a bibliographic essay.

Frank, Frederick S. Guide to the Gothic: An Annotated Bibliography of Criticism.
REF Z5917 .G66F7 1984

Ford, George Harry, ed. Victorian Fiction: A Second Guide to Research.
REF PR871 .V5 1978

Nagel, James and Gwen L. Nagel, eds. Facts on File: Bibliography of American Fiction, 1866-1918.
REF Z1231 .F4 B46 1993

Selective bibliographies of primary and secondary sources for 140 writers.

Kemp, Sandra et al. Edwardian Fiction: An Oxford Companion.
PR881 .K39 1997

"[S]urveys fiction in English, published principally but not exclusively in Great Britain and Ireland between 1 January 1900 and 31 December 1914." Excludes American fiction but includes some from Canada, the African colonies, British India, Australia, and New Zealand. Includes articles on themes and sub-genres as well as on authors.

Eichelberger, Clayton L. A Guide to Critical Reviews of United States Fiction, 1870-1910. 2 vols. (1971-74).
REF Z1225 .E35

A "preliminary" list of 20,000 critical notices of works of American fiction.

Cassis, A.F. The Twentieth-Century English Novel: An Annotated Bibliography of General Criticism. (1977).
REF Z2014 .F4 C35

Rice, Thomas Jackson. English Fiction, 1900-1950: General Bibliography and Individual Authors: A Guide to Information Sources. 2 vols. (1979).
REF Z2014 .F4R5

The general bibliography lists standard secondary sources, with separate lists for sub-genres including short story, crime fiction, political and religious fiction, science fiction, utopian fiction, and fantasy. The entries for 35 authors list primary and secondary sources.

Stanton, Robert J. A Bibliography of Modern British Novelists. 2 vols.
REF Z2039 .F4S72 1978

A list of books, dissertations, and periodical articles on 25 well-known 20th-century British novelists.

Adelman, Irving and Rita Dworkin. The Contemporary Novel: A Checklist of Critical Literature on the English Language Novel Since 1945. 2nd ed. (1997).
REF Z1231 .F4 A34 1997

Selected listing of criticism through 1982.

Vinson, James, ed. Contemporary Novelists. 3rd ed.
REF PR833 .V55 1982

Biographical data, brief critical essay, and bibliographies of primary and secondary sources for each of over 500 writers.

Schlager, Neil and Josh Lauer, eds. Contemporary Novelists. 7th ed.
REF PR881 .C69 2001

Updated version of the volume cited above; since these volumes focus on living writers, see the earlier editions for entries concerning recently deceased writers. The 1st and 2nd editions are in the general stacks (PR883 .V55).

McCaffrey, Larry, ed. Postmodern Fiction: A Bio-Bibliographical Guide.
REF PR3503 .P594 1986

In two main sections. The first includes essays on postmodern genres, the second essays on authors and critics of postmodern fiction.

Specific Sub-Genres

Albert, Walter. Detective and Mystery Fiction: An International Bibliography of Secondary Sources.
REF PN3448 .D4 A36 1985u

Barzun, Jacques and Wendell Hertig Taylor. a Catalogue of Crime. (1971).
REF Z5917.D5 B37 1971

A guide to crime and detective fiction.

Nicholls, Peter. The Encyclopedia of Science Fiction: An Illustrated A to Z. (1979).
REF PN3435 .N5

Poetry

Encyclopedias and Histories

(arranged in order of comprehensiveness)

Preminger, Alex and T.V.F. Brogan, eds. The New Princeton Encyclopedia of Poetry and Poetics.
REF PN1021 .N39 1993

Spender, Stephen and Donald Hall, eds. The Concise Encyclopedia of English and American Poets and Poetry. (1963)
REF PR19 .S74

Perkins, David. A History of Modern Poetry: from the 1890's to the High Modernist Mode. (1976)
PR610 .P4

Perkins, David. A History of Modern Poetry: Modernism and After. (1987)
PS323.5 P46 1987t

Hamilton, Ian . Oxford Companion to Twentieth Century Poetry in English.
REF PR601 .O9 1994

Parini, Jay and Brett C. Miller, eds. The Columbia History of American Poetry.
PS303 .C64 1993t

Haralson, Eric L. and John Hollander, eds. Encyclopedia of American Poetry.
The Nineteenth Century.

REF PS316 .E53 1998
REF PS323.5.E53 2001

General Studies and Introductory Guides

(arranged alphabetically)

Brogan, T. V. F. English Versification, 1570-1980: A Reference Guide with a Global Appendix. (1981)
Z2015.V37B76

Brooks, Cleanth. Understanding Poetry. 4th ed.
PR1109 .B676 1976

Eliot, T. S. On Poetry and Poets. (1957)
PN1042 .E42

Essays by a major modern poet and critic.

Fussell, Paul. Poetic Meter and Poetic Form. (1967)
PE1505 .F88

A standard guide.

Hollander, John. Rhyme's Reason: A Guide to English Verse. New, enlarged ed.
PE1505 .H6 1989

A brief and sometimes playful guide.

Peck, John. How to Study a Poet.
PR504.5 .P4 1988

Perrine, Laurence. Sound and Sense: An Introduction to Poetry. 3rd ed.
PN1042 .P4 1969

A standard introductory guide to poetic language and form. Organized as an anthology in topical chapters (e.g., "Imagery," "Figurative Language," "Rhythm and Metre"), using lyric poems as illustrations.

Pinsky, Robert. The Sounds of Poetry: A Brief Guide.
PN4151 .P55 1998.

Brief and not overly technical, this guide written by a poet shows what formal understanding of poetry can contribute to its analysis and enjoyment.

Smith, Barbara Herrnstein. Poetic Closure: A Study of How Poems End. (1968)
PN1042 .S65

Formalist criticism combining theoretical argument with illustrative close readings.

Steele, Timothy. All the Fun's in How You Say a Thing: An Explanation of Meter and Versification.
PE1505 .S73 1999 [check QCAT-this book is often placed on Reserve]

Written by a poet; engaging and comprehensive.

Whalley, George. Poetic Process. (1953)
PN1042 .W5

Bibliographies

Barker, Jonathan. Poetry in Britain and Ireland since 1970: A Select Bibliography.
Z2014 .P7 B32 1995

Colbeck, Norman, et al., eds. A Bookman's Catalogue: The Norman Colbeck Collection of Nineteenth-century and Edwardian Poetry and Belles Lettres in the Special Collections of the University of British Columbia. 2 vols.
Z2013 .U55 1987t

Glen, Duncan. The Poetry of the Scots: An Introduction and Bibliographical Guide to Poetry in Gaelic, Scots, Latin, and English.
PR8561 .G58 1991

Guy, Patricia A. Women's Poetry Index.
REF PN1024.G89 1985

Indexes 51 anthologies of women poets, most of which are not covered in other standard poetry indexes.

Hazen, Edith P., ed. The Columbia Granger's Index to Poetry. 10th ed.
REF PN1022 .H39 1994t

Lists 79,000 poems of all periods printed in 400 current anthologies (up to June 1993); search by title, first line, last line, author, or subject. Since it lists all anthologies carrying a given poem, Granger's Index can be used to estimate the relative popularity today of classic poems.

Jackson, J. R. de J. Romantic Poetry by Women: A Bibliography, 1770-1835.
REF Z2013.5 .W6J33 1993

Identifies volumes of verse by about 900 women. Includes indexes of author' names, titles, publishers, and locations of publishers outside London.

John Milton. A Bibliography for the Years 1624-1700 (revised) and for the Years 1702-1799

Compiled by John T. Shawcross, University of Kentucky and "...tries to bring together all manuscripts and editions of John Milton's works and all studies and critical statements concerning his life and works...."

Kallich, Martin. British Poetry and the American Revolution: A Bibliographical Survey of Books and Pamphlets, Journals and Magazines, Newspapers, and Prints, 1755-1800. 2 vols.
Z2014 .P7K34 1988

Lochhead, Douglas. A Checklist of Nineteenth Century Canadian Poetry in English: The Maritimes.
REF Z1377 .P7 L6 1987t

Petrauskaite, Edita. Who's Who in the League of Canadian Poets: Directory of Members. 7th ed.
REF PS8081 .L43 1999

Reardon, Joan. Poetry by American Women, 1975-1989: A Bibliography.
REF Z1229 .W8 R42 1990

Reilly, Catherine W. Late Victorian Poetry, 1880-1899: An Annotated Biobibliography.
Z2014 .P7 R453 1994

Riggs, Thomas, ed. Contemporary Poets.
6th ed. PR603 .C6 1996 (See also earlier editions, shelved in the same place.)
7th ed. REF PR603.C6 2001

Ringler, William A. Bibliography and Index of English Verse Printed 1476-1558.
REF Z2014 .P7 R56 1988

Roberts, Adam. Romantic and Victorian Long Poems: A Guide.
REF Z2014 .P7 R67 1999

Willhardt, Mark and Alan Michael Parker, eds. Who's Who in Twentieth Century World Poetry.
REF PN1271 .W46 2000

Anthologies and Compilations

French, David P., ed. Minor English Poets, 1660-1780. 10 vols. (1967)
PR1213 .F7

A Selection from Alexander Chalmers' "The English Poets" [1810].

Goodridge, John, et al., eds. Eighteenth-Century English Labouring-Class Poets. 3 vols. (2003)
PR1195 .L3 E37 2002

Lord, George deF., et al, eds. Poems of Affairs of State: Augustan Satirical Verse, 1660-1714. 10 vols. (New Haven: Yale UP, 1963-1975).
PR1195 .H5P74

A collection of major and minor satirical verse. Arranged chronologically, presenting "political, ecclesiastical, and literary" poems separately.

Guides to and Compilations of Secondary Sources

(arranged chronologically by subject, but beginning with comprehensive works)

Dictionary of Literary Biography (Gale) series:

  • Seventeenth-century British Nondramatic Poets. Second Series.
    ed. M. Thomas Hester.
    REF PR541 .S48 1993
  • Eighteenth-century British Poets. First Series.
    ed. John Sitter.
    REF PR551 .E35 1990
  • Eighteenth-century British Poets. Second Series.
    ed. John Sitter.
    REF PR551 .E36 1991
  • Victorian Poets before 1850. ed. William E. Fredeman and Ira B. Nadel.
    REF PR591 .V53 1984
  • British Poets, 1880-1914.
    ed. Donald E. Stanford.
    REF PR581 B7 1983
  • British Poets, 1914-1945.
    ed. Donald E. Stanford.
    REF PR610.B7 1983
  • Poets of Great Britain and Ireland, 1945-1960.
    ed. Vincent B. Sherry, Jr.
    REF PR610 .P56 1984
  • American Poets, 1880-1945, First Series.
    ed. Peter Quarterma (1986).
    REF PS129 .A545 1986
  • American Poets, 1880-1945, Third Series.
    ed. Peter Quarterma, 2 vols.
    REF PS324 .A44 1987
  • American Poets since World War II.
    ed. Donald J. Greiner, 2 vols. (1980).
    REF PS323.5 A5
  • American Poets since World War II, Sixth Series.
    ed. Joseph Conte.
    REF PS323.5 .A5 1998

These illustrated volumes in the Dictionary of Literary Biography series provide a brief critical biography, a bibliography of primary works, and a very selective list of secondary works for each poet.

Dyson, A. E. English Poetry: Select Bibliographical Guides. (1971)
REF Z2014 .P7E53

Extensive selection of criticism up to 1970 on major English poets from Chaucer to Eliot.

Martinez, Nancy C. and Joseph G.R. Martinez. Guide to British Poetry Explication. 4 vols. (1991-1995)
REF Z2014 .P7M34

Cites major interpretations of works by major poets. Each volume (v. 1. Old English, Medieval -- v. 2. Renaissance -- v. 3. Restoration-Romantic -- v. 4. Victorian-Contemporary) is arranged alphabetically by author and title.

Kuntz, Joseph Marshall and Nancy C. Martinez. Poetry Explication: A Checklist of Interpretation since 1925 of British and American Poems Past and Present. 3rd ed.
REF Z2014 .P7K8 1980

A list of articles, published in books and journals from 1925-1977, that explain poems by major authors. Poem titles are arranged alphabetically beneath each author entry.

Alexander, Harriet Semmes. American and British Poetry: A Guide to the Criticism, 1925-78. 2 vols.
REF Z1231 .P7A44 1984

Nokes, David. An Annotated Critical Bibliography of Augustan Poetry.
REF Z2014 .P7 N65 1989t

Faverty, Frederic E., ed. The Victorian Poets: A Guide to Research. 2nd ed.
REF PR593 .F27 1968

Bibliographic essays describing criticism and scholarship (current through 1966) on the major poets and schools.

Jordan, Frank, ed. The English Romantic Poets: A Review of Research and Criticism. 4th ed.
REF PR590 .E5 1985

Bibliographic essays describing criticism and scholarship (current through about 1983) on the Romantic movement and on Blake, Wordsworth, Coleridge, Byron, Shelley, and Keats. Indexed by author, title, critic, and topics.

Literary Theory

When writing an essay on a work of literature, you are engaging in literary criticism. Before writing your essay, you may find it helpful to know what previous critics have said about the text you are analyzing: existing critical interpretations can be found in both article and book form: see " Article Indexes," "Books," and " History of Criticism."

Literary criticism does not exist in a vacuum. Every critical analysis of a text depends, whether implicitly or explicitly, on a theory—a theory of language, of history, of genre, or of subjectivity, for example. For identifying and developing your own theoretical approach, or for identifying and understanding the theoretical approach of articles and books you read, it can be useful to know something about literary theory in a broader sense.

Starting Point

Johns Hopkins Guide to Literary Theory & Criticism
REF Z6514.C97 J64 1994
Online (2nd ed. 2005)

Other Resources

There are many additional reference works (i.e. dictionaries, encyclopedias, histories) dealing with literary theory in the Reference section of the Library between PN44 and PN86. Here are a few particularly useful titles:

A Glossary of Contemporary Literary Theory
REF PN44.5.H37 2000

The Columbia Dictionary of Modern Literary and Cultural Criticism
REF PN81.C656 1995t

Encyclopedia of Contemporary Literary Theory: Approaches, Scholars, Terms
REF PN81.E54 1993t

The Cambridge History of Literary Criticism
REF PN86.C27 1989

Because "theory" is a very broad term, of relevance to students in many disciplines besides Literature, you will also find a number of useful books in other parts of the Reference collection, e.g. A Dictionary of Cultural and Critical Theory (REF HM101.D527 1996).

Finally, keep in mind that every call number in the Reference collection corresponds to a call number in the stacks. Thus, it is well worth going up to the fourth floor and browsing through the PN 44 to PN 86 range, where you will find a great many books on literary theory. Some particularly important resources are:

Lentricchia, Frank & Thomas McLaughlin., eds. Critical Terms for Literary Study.
PN81.C84 1995.

Barry, Peter. Beginning Theory: An Introduction to Literary and Cultural Theory. 2nd ed.
PN81.B367 2002

Bressler, Charles E. Literary criticism : an introduction to theory and practice. 2nd ed.
PN81.B666 1999

Websites

Starting Points

Voice of the Shuttle - Literary Theory

Literary Resources - Theory

Additional Sites Recommended by Queen's Faculty

Academic Info - Comparative Literature: Literary Theory

Contemporary Literary Theory

John Lye, Brock University

Introductory Guide to Critical Theory

Dino Felluga, Purdue University

Literary Histories

While literary histories aim to offer a well-informed and reasonable objective overview, they are more detailed and interpretive than encyclopedias. They are useful for learning about trends in literature over a broad period. For example, you might want to place a work in the context of the development of a particular genre or within a period in history. Histories provide background reading to address other questions such as: What form did literature take in the fifteenth century? Which female authors were writing in the Middle Ages? When did a particular school of criticism begin? Histories generally represent the consensus view against which new ideas or interpretations can be tested.

Cambridge Histories Online Literary Studies

Electronic version of the 1907-1921 edition of the Cambridge History of English and American Literature.

The Cambridge History of English Literature
REF PR83.C3 1961

A fifteen-volume set providing a chronological survey from beginnings in the Old English period to the end of the nineteenth century. Index in volume 15.

The Oxford History of English Literature
Call number varies (PR400-600 section)

This literary series (15 volumes) covers English literature from earliest known works to present. Each volume contains critical writings on a particular successive literary period. Includes excellent bibliographies about each. To find the Library's holdings, search QCAT by series title.

A Literary History of England
REF PR83.B3 1967

"Although dated in many respects, the work is still the best single-volume history of English literature".

The Cambridge History of Literary Criticism
REF PN86.C27 1989

Intended as a history of Western literary theory and criticism from classical antiquity to the present. Each volume of the 9 volume set (volume 2 and 6 are forthcoming) consists of separately-authored essays on major theorists, groups, movements or schools, periods, and genres, and concludes with a bibliography of primary and secondary sources.

Literary Criticism

LITERARY CRITICISM: HOW TO WRITE IT, HOW TO CITE IT

The Queen's University English Department has adopted the following as its general guide to matters of writing and citation:

Hacker, Diane. A Canadian Writer's Reference. 4th ed.
Boston: Bedford/St. Martin's, 2009.

The following introductions and guides may also be useful:

Sylvan Barnet & Reid Gilbert. A Short Guide to Writing about Literature. 1st Canadian ed.
PE1479 .C7 B3 1997t

Chris Hopkins. Thinking About Texts: An Introduction to English Studies.
PR21 .H66 2001

Nicholas Marsh. How to Begin Studying English Literature. 2nd ed.
PR87 .M2753 1995t

Richard Bradford, ed. Introducing Literary Studies.
PR87 .I58 1996

John Peck & Martin Coyle. Practical Criticism: The Complete Guide to Writing an Analysis of a Poem, Novel and Play.
PR57 .P425 1995t

Steven Lynn. Texts and Contexts: Writing about Literature with Critical Theory. 2nd ed.
PE1479 .C7 L96 1998

Wilfred L. Guerin et al. A Handbook of Critical Approaches to Literature. 5th ed.
PN81 .G8 2005

Ross Murfin & Supryia M. Ray. The Bedford Glossary of Critical and Literary Terms. 2d. ed.
Boston : Bedford/St. Martin's, 2003.

Paul Fussell. Poetic Meter and Poetic Form (1967).
PE1505 .F88

John Hollander. Rhyme's Reason: A Guide to English Verse. New, enlarged ed.
PE1505 .H6 1989

Johns Hopkins Guide to Literary Theory & Criticism
Online (full-text version of the 1994 paper edition, updated from 1997- )
REF Z6514 .C97 J64 1994

The authoritative source for citation practice in literary studies is:

MLA handbook for writers of research papers by Joseph Gibaldi. 7th ed.
Online 2003 (Prepared by: University Library, California State University, Los Angeles)
REF LB2369 .G53 2009

Students may occasionally be asked to use "Chicago style" for citation:

The Chicago Manual of Style. 16th ed.
REF Z253 .U69 2010

For more information on citation, especially citation manager programs and electronic citation, see the Queen's Library's guides:

Find and use Citation and Style Guides and

Research Strategy, Citing Sources

For information on plagiarism, see Hacker, and also:

You Quote it, You Note It!: An interactive tutorial from Acadia University

Avoiding Plagiarism: a resource from University of Nevada, Las Vegas

Queen's Policy on Academic Dishonesty

History of Criticism

It is often useful to get a sense of the shifting reception of a literary work from its initial reviews through the centuries. Many resources exist to help you do this.

Queen's Library holds 118 volumes of the "Critical Heritage" series: for a complete listing, do a "Series/Uniform Title" search in QCAT for this series title. Individual volumes review criticism of authors as diverse as Byron, Gaskell, and Nabokov.

Gale Literary Criticism Series

Provides immediate critical essays on a wide range of authors, usually giving a general overview of a writer's work or themes.

Choose the appropriate set depending on the year of the author's death. Each volume contains cumulative author, nationality and title indexes at the back, referring to the specific volume number and set in which to find the entry.

If author's death date is:

You should turn to:

After Dec.31 1959
(or author is still living)
Contemporary Literary Criticism
REF PN771.C59
1900 - 1959 Twentieth-Century Literary Criticism
REF PN771.G27
1800-1899 Nineteenth-Century Literature Criticism
REF PN761.N5
1400-1799 Literature Criticism from 1400 to 1800
REF PN86.L53 1984 (excluding Shakespeare)
Antiquity-1399 Classical and Medieval Literature Criticism
REF PN861.5.C57

The following titles are a selection of bibliographies on criticism.

Dyson, A.E. English Poetry: Select Bibliographical Guides (1971)
REF Z2014.P7E53

Extensive selection of criticism up to 1970 on major English poets from Chaucer to Eliot.

Martinez, Nancy C. and Joseph G.R. Martinez. Guide to British Poetry Explication
4 vols. (1991-1995)
REF Z2014.P7M34

Cites major interpretations of works by major poets. Each volume (v. 1. Old English, Medieval -- v. 2. Renaissance -- v. 3. Restoration-Romantic -- v. 4. Victorian-Contemporary) is arranged alphabetically by author and title.

Kuntz, Joseph Marshall and Nancy C. Martinez. Poetry Explication: A Checklist of Interpretation since 1925 of British and American Poems Past and Present
3rd ed.
REF Z2014.P7K8 1980

A list of articles, published in books and journals from 1925-1977, that explains poems by major authors. Poem titles are arranged alphabetically beneath each author entry.

Alexander, Harriet Semmes. American and British Poetry: A Guide to the Criticism, 1925-78
REF Z1231.P7A44 1984

Eichelberger, Clayton L. A Guide to Critical Reviews of United States Fiction, 1870-1910 (1971-74)
REF Z1225.E35

A "preliminary" list of 20,000 critical notices of works of American fiction in two volumes.

Cassis, A.F. The Twentieth Century Novel: An Annotated Bibliography of General Criticism (1977)
REF Z2014.F4 C35

McNutt, Dan F. The Eighteenth Century Gothic Novel: An Annotated Bibliography of Criticism and Selected Texts (1975)
REF Z2014.F5M3

Harner, James L. English Renaissance Prose Fiction, 1500-1660: An Annotated Bibliography of Criticism (1978)
Z2014.F4 H37

Trudeau, Lawrence J., ed. Drama Criticism: Criticism of the Most Significant and Widely Studied Dramatic Works from All the World's Literatures (1991- )
REF PN1721.D72t

Excerpts of criticism on the most frequently studied playwrights of all time periods and nationalities. Holdings: vol. 1 only.

Stein, Rita. Major Modern Dramatists
REF PN1861.M27 1984

Excerpts of criticism on Western playwrights of international renown from the late 19th and 20th centuries.

Primary Sources

Advanced research in literary studies may require you to consult early editions of works, or to find materials not recently reprinted. The library has a number of resources to help you identify these, and in many cases they are available in full text at Queen's on microfiche or online. In addition, Special Collections in Douglas Library has extensive manuscript and early imprint collections.

The Internet is now home to many open repositories of digitized early editions and manuscripts. See Websites for selected resources.

For more information about what primary sources are and why you might want to consult them, check the general Primary Sources guide.

Early Imprints

  You are connecting from off-campus. You will be prompted to enter your NetID and password before connecting to a Queen's-only database.
Publication coverage: Pre-1925
A database of 485,000 citations, this is a core resource for researching nineteenth-century topics focusing on cultural and intellectual life. Other periodical indexes are also searchable at this site. Citations only.

The CIHM provides access to early printed Canadian materials on microfiche and through Early Canadiana Online. The collection contains more than 65 thousand titles from the 18th, 19th and early 20th centuries.

The fiche collection is shelved in the W.D. Jordan Library (Special Collections). To find out what is in the collection, search QCAT with keywords and add CIHM to your search:

CIHM and "red river settlement"
Publication coverage: 1473 - 1700
From the first book published in English through the age of Spenser and Shakespeare, contains about 100,000 of over 125,000 titles listed in Pollard & Redgrave's Short-Title Catalogue (1475-1640), Wing's Short-Title Catalogue (1641-1700), the Thomason Tracts (1640-1661) collection, and the Early English Books Tract Supplement.
Publication coverage: 1701-1800
Digital reproductions of nearly 150,000 English-language titles and editions published during the 18th century and representing every significant English-language and foreign-language title printed in the United Kingdom, along with thousands of important works from the Americas.
Publication coverage: 1473 - 1800
Includes a comprehensive bibliography of the printed output of the hand-press era, lists the whereabouts of surviving copies, and notes the existence of facsimiles. The holdings of over 1,500 libraries around the world are represented. Geographically, the ESTC includes:
  1. All relevant items printed in the British Isles
  2. All relevant items printed in Colonial America, the United States (1776-1800) and Canada
  3. All relevant items printed in territories governed by Britain during any period up to 1800
  4. All relevant items, printed wholly or partly in English, or other British vernaculars, in any other part of the world
Publication coverage: 1830 - 1898
Intended to entertain, inform and educate American women; today considered to be one of the most important resources for 19th-century American life and culture.
The Internet Library of Early Journals
Journals include: Gentleman's Magazine, The Annual Register, Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society, Notes and Queries, The Builder, and Blackwood's Edinburgh Magazine.
Publication coverage: 19th century - present
Includes fiction, poetry and plays written by Latin American writers with Hispanic background working in the United States.
Publication coverage: 1892 - present (some primary texts date from 600 AD)
Access restricted to the Queen's community (4 user limit)
Searchable database of English and American poetry, drama, and prose.
Nineteenth Century Readers' Guide to Periodical Literature
REF AP3.R496 (1890-1899)
Publication coverage: 1801 - 1919
NSTC aims to provide listings of British books printed between 1801 and 1919. "British books" are defined as "all books published in Britain, its colonies, and the United States of America; all books in English wherever published; and all translations from English."
The MacIsaac Memorial Fund and the K. Phyllis Wilson Library Endowment Fund
Full-text primary resources (monographs, newspapers, pamphlets, manuscripts, ephemera, maps, statistics, and more) of Photography: The World Through the Lens; Science, Technology and Medicine, 1780-1925; Europe and Africa: Commerce, Christianity, Civilization, and Conquest; and Women: Transnational Networks.
Publication coverage: 1790 - 1905
Publication coverage: varies; see individual titles
PEP Web provides access to the PEP Web archive, which contains both books and journal articles. The book archive includes the full text of the Standard Edition of the Complete Psychological Works of Sigmund Freud, Freud's letters to his major collaborators and the full text of the major works by Wilfred Bion, Melanie Klein and Donald Winnicott along with other major psychoanalytic authors. The journals in the archive presently include the full text many premier English-language journals in psychoanalysis.
Provides e-text editions of public domain novels and historical documents.
Publication coverage: 1983 - present
Print holdings: REF AI3.R2 from 1900- (Readers' Guide to Periodical Literature)
REF AP3.R496 (1890-1922) (Nineteenth Century Readers' Guide to Periodical Literature)
Indexes and abstracts Canadian and U.S. journals, magazines, and newspapers.

Manuscripts

The Edith and Lorne Pierce Canadiana Collection is the centrepiece of the W.D. Jordan Library. The resources available at Queen's for Canadian historical and literary studies pre- and post-Confederation are outstanding. The collection of early North American travel and exploration literature is extensive. Supplementing this collection is the Library's complete holdings of microform and online reproductions produced by CIHM.

Queen's University Archives preserves records and manuscripts in two areas: University Records and Literary Manuscripts.

A Guide to the Holdings of Queen's University Archives
REF CD3649.K5Q46 1986t

Detailed List of Canadian Literary Manuscripts Acquired to Dec. 1980
REF Z1375.Q43 1980at (WD Jordan Special Collections)

Other resources include:

Index of English Literary Manuscripts
REF Z6611.L7I5

Location and other details on manuscript collections for major British authors for the period 450-1900 in four volumes. Also provides useful summaries of scholarship and notes about special problems associated with manuscript studies for each author covered.

Location Register of English Literary Manuscripts and Letters: Eighteenth and Nineteenth Centuries
REF Z6611.L7L629 1995t

Location Register of Twentieth-Century English Literary Manuscripts and Letters: A Union List of Papers of Modern English, Irish, Scottish and Welsh Authors in the British Isles
Z6611.L7L63 1988t (Stauffer Library books)

Identifies manuscripts (including proofs, sound recordings, and electronic documents) by British writers, which are available for public consultation at libraries throughout the British Isles. Coverage is for 20th-century authors, including those who died after December 31, 1899.

Literary Archives Guide
CA1 AK 88L31 (Government Documents)

Provides brief descriptions of major Canadian literary collections acquired by the Manuscript Division of National Archives before September 30, 1987.

Websites

General

Starting Points

Voice of the Shuttle: Literature in English

Alan Liu, University of California Santa Barbara

Literary Resources on the Net

Jack Lynch, Rutgers University

Additional General Links

English Literature Resources

The London School of Journalism

Norton Topics Online

Includes annotated texts and contexts grouped by topic; illustrations; exercises to stimulate critical thinking and generate paper topics; annotated links to related sites; cross-references to the Norton Anthology; and the Norton Online Archive, an electronic library of over 150 literary texts.

British Literature by Period

Medieval

Starting Points

Voice of the Shuttle - Anglo-Saxon & Medieval

Alan Liu, University of California Santa Barbara

Medieval Literary Resources

Maintained by Jack Lynch at Rutgers.

Additional Sites Recommended by Queen's Faculty

Geoffrey Chaucer

Harvard University

The Labyrinth

Martin Irvine & Deborah Everhart, Georgetown University

Mapping Margery Kempe

Sarah Stanbury & Virginia Raguin, College of the Holy Cross

TEAMS Online Texts

Russell Peck et al, University of Rochester

For other related sources, see History Websites Medieval.

Renaissance

Starting Points

Voice of the Shuttle - Renaissance & 17th Century

Renaissance Literary Resources

Additional Sites Recommended by Queen's Faculty

Early English Books Online (EEBO)

Accessible via Queen's subscription. Digital library of over 100,000 individual titles from 1473-1700.

Internet Shakespeare Editions

Michael Best, University of Victoria

Mr. William Shakespeare and the Internet

Terry A. Gray, Palomar College

Shakespeare Concordance

Shakespeare in Quarto

Digitized version of the British Library’s 93 copies of the 21 plays by Shakespeare printed in quarto before the theatres were closed in 1642 and more....

Works of the Bard

Matty Farrow, University of Sydney. Searchable complete works of Shakespeare.

Milton Reading Room

Thomas Luxon et al, Dartmouth College. This site contains all of Milton's poetry in English, Italian, Latin, and Greek, and selections of his prose.

18th Century

Starting Points

Eighteenth-Century Resources

Voice of the Shuttle - Restoration & 18th Century

Additional Sites Recommended by Queen's Faculty

Eighteenth Century Collections Online

Accessible via Queen's subscription. E-texts of 150,000 books published in the eighteenth century.

C18-L Selected Readings

Kevin Berland, Pennsylvania State University

Eighteenth-Century E-Texts

Jack Lynch, Rutgers University

Internet Library of Early Journals

Universities of Birmingham, Leeds, Manchester and Oxford. A free collection of "substantial runs" of six major 18th and 19th-century journals.

Romanticism

Starting Points

Voice of the Shuttle - The Romantics

Romantic Literary Resources

Additional Sites Recommended by Queen's Faculty

British Women Romantic Poets, 1789-1832

Charlotte Payne, ed., University of California Davis

Corvey Women Writers on the Web

Sheffield Hallam University & Corvey Library, Germany. A database containing works by and about 417 women writers.

Keats-Shelley Journal Bibliography

The Literary Gothic

Jack Voller, Southern Illinois University.

Romantic Chronology

Laura Mandell & Alan Liu, eds., University of California Santa Barbara

Romantic Circles

Neil Fraistat & Steve Jones, eds., University of Maryland. A refereed scholarly website.

Romanticism on the Net

Michael Eberle-Sinatra, ed., University of Montreal. An international refereed Electronic Journal.

The William Blake Archive

Morris Eaves, Robert Essick, & Joseph Viscomi, eds., Library of Congress.

Women Romantic-Era Writers

Adriana Craciun, Birkbeck, University of London

Victorian

Starting points

You will find below Victorian literature and culture resources not listed on the Literary Resources collection maintained by Jack Lynch of Rutgers.

Bibliography

  • The Victorian Studies Bibliography. Lists noteworthy books, articles, and reviews on the Victorian period. Compiled by the staff of the journal Victorian Studies and representatives from the Victorian Division of the Modern Language Association. http://www.letrs.indiana.edu/web/v/victbib/.

General resources

  • The Victorian Dictionary . Compiled by Lee Jackson, an author of historical thrillers and nonfiction about Victorian London, this site is a searchable collection of excerpts from books, pamphlets, academic works and periodicals, original writings by the author, and images (including many from Punch). The site is worth a look for online researchers, although, as the author notes in his bibliography, serious scholars should consult an original copy of the materials referenced. http://www.victorianlondon.org/.
  • Victoria Research Web. A guide to research on 19th-century Britain, including short reference works produced by scholars, such as guides to periodical research, locating and using Victorian publishing records, and planning a research trip to Britain. Additionally, the site hosts “At the Circulating Library,” a database that catalogs information about three-volume novels published during the Victorian period and serialization information for more than 60 periodicals. http://victorianresearch.org/.
  • Victorian Web: Victorian Social History: An Overview. An example of one of the many sub-pages of the Victorian Web that organizes links by topic, genre, or individual. A great starting point for any Web research on Victorian culture. Also see overview pages on political history, religion, visual arts, technology, and more accessible from the site’s home page. http://www.victorianweb.org/history/sochistov.html.

Art and entertainment

  • British Library: Early Photographically Illustrated Books. An online exhibit documenting the advent of photographically illustrated books, including nearly 1,500 early prints on a variety of subjects. http://www.bl.uk/onlinegallery/onlineex/earlyphotos/index.html.
  • Who’s Who of Victorian Cinema. This site is based on the book by the same name published by the British Film Institute. The site provides a biographical guide to Victorian film, from the 1870s through 1901. Includes 300 searchable biographies of filmmakers, actors, and other notable figures in early film.
    http://www.victorian-cinema.net/.

Victorian serials and publication

  • 19th Century British Pamphlets Online. The result of two large scale cataloging and digitization projects, records for nearly 180,000 pamphlets held within 21 UK research libraries have been created and linked to digitized versions in JSTOR. http://www.britishpamphlets.org.uk/.
  • Aspects of the Victorian Book. Online exhibition from the British Library providing an introduction to printing technology, formats (including yellowbacks, “three-deckers,” and penny dreadfuls), illustration techniques, and more. http://www.bl.uk/collections/early/victorian/intro.html.
  • Internet Library of Early Journals. Includes digitized runs of six 18th and 19th century journals (at least 20 years each), including Notes and Queries, The Builder, and Blackwood’s Edinburgh Magazine. The project was completed in 1999, and no additional material will be added. http://www.bodley.ox.ac.uk/ilej/.
  • Nineteenth-century Serials Edition. Searchable database of the digitized versions of six 19th-century serials and newspapers segmented to the article level and downloadable. http://www.ncse.ac.uk/index.html.
  • Science in the Nineteenth-Century Periodical (Sci-Per) Index. Searchable index to the science, technology, and medical content of 16 19th-century nonscientific periodicals. Invaluable resource for those researching the representation and interpretation of science in the general literature of 19th-century Britain. http://www.sciper.org/index.html.
  • The Internet Archive. An essential resource for any researcher looking for digitized material in audio, video, or text formats. This immense “Internet library” offers almost two million digitized texts, including many 19th-century periodicals. http://www.archive.org/index.php.

Notable individuals and their work

  • The Carlyle Letters Online. An electronic collection of more than 10,000 letters of Thomas and Jane Welsh Carlyle based on the print volumes that make up The Collected Letters of Thomas and Jane Welsh Carlyle, published by Duke University Press. The ability to create a free account with which the user can set up folders, save searches and letters, and create e-mail alerts is available. http://carlyleletters.dukejournals.org/.
  • Darwin Correspondence Project. Site based on a project founded in 1974 to collect letters by and to Charles Darwin. Contains the full text of more than 6,000 letters and information on 9,000 additional letters, as well as essays and other supplementary material describing the letters and their context. All letters are published in the print volumes of Correspondence of Charles Darwin (Cambridge University Press). Well organized and beautifully enhanced with relevant images, this site is a must for any Darwin researcher.
    http://www.darwinproject.ac.uk/home.
  • The Complete Work of Charles Darwin Online. Comprehensive site containing more than 90,000 pages of searchable text and more than 200,000 electronic images. Contains a complete collection of Darwin’s publications, including both the digitized image of the text and the formatted electronic text. Includes many signed and annotated copies of texts and many are available in languages other than English. Also includes a large collection of Darwin’s manuscripts and private papers, many not published elsewhere.
    http://darwin-online.org.uk/.

Statistical and regional information

  • A Vision of Britain Through Time. This site was created by the Great Britain Historical GIS Project based at the University of Portsmouth. It provides a geographical survey of Britain from 1801 to 2001, including census reports, historical maps, election results, and the largest collection of historical British travel writing available online. Best used for tracking statistical trends for specific counties, districts, and parishes within Britain. http://vision.port.ac.uk/index.jsp.
  • Charles Booth and the Survey into Life and Labour in London (1886–1903). Provides an index to the original records of Booth’s Inquiry into the Life and Labour of the People in London, an extensive study of working class life undertaken between 1886 and 1903, which is archived at the London School of Economics and Political Science library. Also contains a great deal of digitized material, including police notebooks and the Maps Descriptive of London Poverty, in which maps of London were color-coded to indicate the poverty level and social class in different areas of the city. http://booth.lse.ac.uk/.
  • Historical Directories. A collection of digitized local and trade directories for England and Wales from 1750 to 1919. Useful for research in local and genealogical history. http://www.historicaldirectories.org/hd/index.asp.
  • HISTPOP: The Online Historical Population Reports Website. HISTPOP provides online access to the British population reports for Britain and Ireland from 1801 to 1937 as well as supplementary documents from the National Archives, critical essays, and other material. http://www.histpop.org/ohpr/servlet/.

Crime and punishment

  • Studies in Scarlet: Marriage and Sexuality in the U.S. and U.K., 1815–1914. Digitized images of more than 420 separately published trial narratives from the extensive collections of the Harvard Law School Library. Included are American, British, and Irish cases from 1815 to 1914 involving child custody, bigamy, and violent crime as it relates to sex and marriage. http://vc.lib.harvard.edu/vc/deliver/home?_collection=scarlet
  • The Proceedings of the Old Bailey, 1674–1913. Beautifully organized and fully searchable collection of the digitized images and electronic text of the proceedings of more than 197,745 criminal trials held at the Old Bailey, London’s Central Criminal Court, from 1674 to 1913. Also includes contemporary maps, images , and other supplementary material. http://www.oldbaileyonline.org/.
  • The Workhouse. Detailed and comprehensive site on all aspects of the workhouses in Britain, including more than 5,000 illustrations and photos and 1,800 maps and building plans. http://www.workhouses.org.uk/.

Modernism

Starting Points

Voice of the Shuttle - Modern British and American

Twentieth-Century British, Irish and Commonwealth Literary Resources

Additional Sites Recommended by Queen's Faculty

The International Virginia Woolf Society

The James Joyce Society

Jazz Age Culture

Kathleen Nichols, Pittsburg State University

The Modern Word

The Samuel Beckett Endpage

Porter Abbott and Benjamin Strong, University of California, Santa Barbara

Exploring The Waste Land

Richard A. Parker

Other Literatures in English

American

Starting Points

American Literary Resources

Voice of the Shuttle - American Literature

Additional General Links

American Memory

A collection of digitized documents, photographs, recordings and text from many periods and genres from the Library of Congress Americana collections.

American Studies at University of Virginia

Superb resource of primary texts, historical information, a feature on the 1930's and much more…

American Verse Project

University of Michigan. An archive of pre-1920 American poetry.

Perspectives in American Literature (PAL)

Paul Reuben, California State University Stanislaus.

The Walt Whitman Archive


Electronic Texts

Here are some open access sites where you can access a wide variety of e-texts. For sites which concentrate on e-texts from a particular literary category or period, try looking under relevant headings in this website guide; for subscription resources, see Primary Sources.

American and English Poetry

At bartleby.com, a collection of public domain anthologies and books.

Canadian Poetry Archive

From Library and Archives Canada, these poems represent some of Canada's most notable poetry from the 19th and early 20th centuries. Includes selective biographies.

Electronic Text Center at the University of Virginia

Latino Literature: Poetry, Drama and Fiction

Includes fiction, poetry and plays written by Latin American writers with Hispanic background working in the United States.

Project Gutenberg

A volunteer-generated collection of public domain texts.

Internet Library of Early Journals

Universities of Birmingham, Leeds, Manchester and Oxford. A free collection of "substantial runs" of six major 18th and 19th-century journals.

Representative Poetry Online

Ian Lancashire, ed., University of Toronto. A free archive of poetry from Old English to the present day.

Undergraduate Resources

The listing below indicates resources most often used by undergraduate researchers in English. For a fuller list of resources, see the complete English Resources by Subject (the headings of which appear in the blue box to the left).

Organization:

Books

Electronic texts (etexts) (of primary sources)

Searchable database of more than 350,000 works of English and American poetry, drama, and prose. Also indexes criticism from The Annual Bibliography of English Language and Literature (ABELL) and MLA International Bibliography (MLAIB), and includes the full text of 104 specialist literature journals.

Provides e-text editions of public domain novels and historical documents.

From the first book published in English through the age of Spenser and Shakespeare, contains about 100,000 of over 125,000 titles listed in Pollard & Redgrave's Short-Title Catalogue (1475-1640), Wing's Short-Title Catalogue (1641-1700), the Thomason Tracts (1640-1661) collection, and the Early English Books Tract Supplement.

Digital reproductions of nearly 150,000 English-language titles and editions published during the eighteenth century and representing every significant English-language and foreign-language title printed in the United Kingdom, along with thousands of important works from the Americas.

PEP Web provides access to the PEP Web archive, which contains both books and journal articles. The book archive includes the full text of the Standard Edition of the Complete Psychological Works of Sigmund Freud, Freud's letters to his major collaborators and the full text of the major works by Wilfred Bion, Melanie Klein and Donald Winnicott along with other major psychoanalytic authors. The journals in the archive presently include the full text many premier English-language journals in psychoanalysis.

Concordances and Collected Quotations

A concordance is a comprehensive index of the words used in a given text or set of texts. It is useful for locating a passage that you cannot otherwise find, for discovering similar passages, or for establishing the frequency with which particular words are used.

You can find concordances to the Bible, to major poets, and even to some prose works. For instance:

For other examples and advice on finding specific concordances, check out Concordances

Collections of famous quotations, such as Bartlett's, also function as concordances.

Provides keyword concordance and author indexes to quotations from literary works, sacred writing and other sources worldwide.

Search for familiar quotations in English using keyword, exact phrase, author, and Boolean and pattern searches.

For others,

Dictionaries

The OED, as it is known, is the most comprehensive and authoritative dictionary of the English language. Besides providing definitions and pronunciations, it provides quotations to illustrate the history of usage, beginning with the earliest known usage of each word.

[need some instruction on how to use it—esp. the advanced search, where they can look up how many words are introduced into the language by a particular work or author, etc.]

Glossaries of Literary, Critical, and Rhetorical Terms

Genre Guides

“Genre” is the French word for “type” or “kind.” In literary studies the term refers to traditional classifications, such as drama, novel, or lyric, or to sub-classifications; thus comedy and tragedy are genres or sub-genres within the larger genre of drama.

For studies of the concept of genre, see:

Lucid overview of genre theory with references to further studies.

This “pragmatic” theory of genre questions whether genre classifications can be correct in any absolute sense and stresses the explanatory power of mis-classifications. Examples emphasize dramatic monologue.

For studies of particular genres, see:

Encyclopedias,Companions, and Guides

1. General Encyclopedias and Reference Works

A general encyclopedia, so don't expect extensive coverage or entries on more obscure authors. However, it does provide good overview information on major authors, and articles may give information on where to find the more influential criticism.

The 11th ed. (1911) is the last edition to offer articles in such depth. With articles by writers such as T.H. Huxley, William Morris, Leslie Stephen, A.C. Swinburne, and A.N. White­head, it is especially useful to humanities students and for topics concerning the nineteenth century or in which nineteenth-century scholar­ship was strong. The online version is a work in progress.

For dictionaries, thesauruses, quotations, literary terms, and companions to literature. ORO contains the full text of more than 100 dictionary, language and subject reference books. Some of the resources most useful to literary study include The Concise Oxford Dictionary, The Oxford Companion to Classical Literature, The Dictionary of Art, The Oxford Companion to British Literature, The Oxford Companion to Canadian Literature, The Oxford Companion to American Literature.

2. Literary Companions, Handbooks, and Guides

3. Other Specialized Companions, Encyclopedias, Guides, etc.

Wordsworth and (encyclopedia or companion or guide)

Blues and (encyclopedia or companion or guide)

“English Drama” and (encyclopedia or companion or guide)

Literary History, History of Criticism, and Literary Theory

1. Literary History

Literary histories aim to offer well informed and reasonably objective overviews, but they are usually more detailed and interpretive than encyclopedias. They are useful for learning about literary developments over time. If you wonder what writers were influential in a given period or how and when realistic fiction became popular, of if you just want to place a work in the context of a literary movement or period, a literary history may be your most useful resource.

Electronic version of the 1907-1921 edition of the Cambridge History of English and American Literature.

The best single-volume history of English literature.

For other literary histories,

2. History of Criticism

It can be useful to know how literature was read and evaluated by contemporaries—this may shed light, for instance, on the degree to which a work was either conventional or original or on why an author revised a work or took a new direction in a subsequent work. There are many resources to help you learn about reception. For instance,

For more general history of criticism, see

The Cambridge History of Literary Criticism
REF PN86.C27 1989

Intended as a history of Western literary theory and criticism from classical antiquity to the present. Each volume of the 9 volume set (volume 2 and 6 are forthcoming) consists of separately authored essays on major theorists, groups, movements, schools, periods, and genres, and concludes with a bibliography of primary and secondary sources.

For further suggestions, check out History of Criticism.

3. Literary Theory

There are many reference works (i.e. dictionaries, encyclopedias, histories) dealing with literary theory in the Reference section of the Library between PN44 and PN86. A good starting point is:

Here are some more useful titles:

Biographies

Oxford Dictionary of National Biography
Online
REF DA28.O95 2004

Revised edition of the Dictionary of National Biography. A definitive resource for British and Commonwealth biography, comprising 50,000 biographies written by over 10,000 contributors. Print version covers from the earliest times to the year 2000 (60 volumes). Online version covers from earliest times to 2001.

Scholarly Articles

Articles are smaller in scope than books and can therefore focus on more particular aspects of a given topic. Since articles are faster to produce and publish, the most up-to-date research often appears in this form. Many are now available on-line, making them attractive also in terms of convenience. Articles in scholarly journals are peer-reviewed—that is to say, they have gone through an anonymous formal vetting and editing process—whereas articles in magazines or newspapers are accepted at the discretion of a single editor. In general, the most nuanced and thoroughly researched articles on literary topics are found in scholarly journals: these are what you should most often cite in research essays in the English Department.

Tip: Articles are not listed in QCAT. You must use an index to find articles in scholarly journals and magazines. Then, search for the journal or magazine in QCAT.

Published by the Modern Language Association, this is the standard bibliography for scholarly writing on literature, linguistics, drama, folklore, etc. Indexes over 4,000 international journals, as well as monographs, dissertations, and other publications.

Other National Literatures in English

To find out about other (i.e., non-British) National Literatures in English, see:

Websites

Theses

[Gabrielle Émilie Le Tonnelier de Breteuil on the Nature of Fire; Pen and Paper; Albert Einstein's Dissertation]

Queen's

To find theses and dissertations produced at Queen's, search the following:

Canada

Repositories

Search for full text of open access dissertations and theses by searching the following sites:

United States

International

TIP: The Library sometimes can have a copy of a dissertation from another university--either purchased by the Library, or purchased by an individual student or faculty member and later donated to the library collection so always check QCAT.