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Women Writers in Black Literature: AAAS 4146

Black women writers: Selections of readings from African and African Diaspora women writers.

Find Literary Articles & Criticisms

Looking for critical commentary on your author's work? Try using the sources below.

Which database MLA or JSTOR?

Which should you choose?






Question: Which should you choose, MLA or JSTOR? And what's the difference?

  • Answer: It depends on what kind of research you need.

MLA is the research tool for literature because it most accurately reflects the state of literary studies in the United States and internationally. MLA includes listings of scholarly journal articles, books, book chapters, and dissertations, published from 1926 to the present.  Abstracts are oftentimes not included, so you need to depend on subject headings to determine what the material is covering. Those subject headings are the key to organizing your search strategy.

MLA is excellent when you want to learn current research trends for an author or text.   

JSTOR contains full-text articles published in scholarly journals from a wide range of disciplines, including language & literature. The most recently published articles (past 3-5 years) are not available, but much older ones are. Keyword searching can be tricky since JSTOR scans the complete article for your term(s).  Choosing and combining your keywords is key.

JSTOR is excellent when you need more historical research on an author or text, as well as when you want to learn who else cited a particular article.

Search for Research Articles here

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Why Google Scholar?

  • Question: Why would you use Google Scholar?
  • Answer: Google Scholar identifies scholarly research materials from a broad range of subject areas.

Google Scholar offers a "cited by" feature - it will display a list of documents which cited the document you originally retrieved. This can be useful in determing how influential a source has been.  The list only includes documents available in Google Scholar, though.

Look for the Find Full-Text @ TU link to access available full-text articles.  Or, go into the preferences of Google Scholar and select Temple University from Library Links.

Google Scholar Search