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English, Literature & Writing (UNH Durham)

This guide will help you locate resources for writing, and for the study of literature at UNH, including American literature, English literature, and Shakespeare.

Researching an Author

When researching an author or a text, cross reference both information on the free web and information in library sources. The free web might provide links to:

  • An author's personal website or publisher's website, which might provide biographical and bibliographical information.
  • Essays published in popular literature, such as Time Magazine or The New Yorker
  • Reviews of written work or performances
  • News stories or interviews, sometimes with audio

The Library may provide book sources about or by the author, as well as subscription access to copyrighted materials not available for free online. These might include:

  • Primary source texts (plays, poems, novels, books of criticism, contemporary reviews, etc.)
  • Secondary source materials (books, journal articles, small magazines, etc.)
  • Biographical material
  • Contextual material on the history a person or text was depicting or living through

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Literature Reviews

Different disciplines might recognize one of these three types of literature reviews:

  1. Narrative or traditional literature review
  2. Annotated bibliography
  3. Systematic literature review

The type of review you write will depend on your discipline and whether you are completing an assignment in your undergraduate program, a doctoral dissertation, or an article for publication in a journal.

 

An undergraduate literature review may be in the form of an annotated bibliography or a review of a small selection of literature--for example ten relevant articles--written in narrative form. If you are asked to write a literature review, and you are an undergraduate student, your assignment, your discipline, and your professor will guide you toward the appropriate process and level of comprehension required.

 

These three types are not the only varieties of literature reviews. Often the term "review" and "literature" can be confusing and used in the wrong context. Grant and Booth (2009) attempt to clear up this confusion by discussing 14 review types of reviews and their associated methodologies, as well as the advantages and disadvantages associated with each.

Grant, Maria J., and Andrew Booth. "A typology of reviews: an analysis of 14 review types and associated methodologies." Health Information and Libraries Journal, no. 2, 2009, pp. 91-108. EBSCOhost, doi:10.1111/j.1471-1842.2009.00848.x.

Mining Citations to Find More Resources

When you find a relevant item you can use it to find more resources.

  • Review an item's bibliography for additional leads for texts on the same topic. 
  • Seach by author's name to find other publications by that writer.
    • Back in time:  Viewing citations from an bibliography leads back in time to related works. 
    • Forward in time:  Use a tool like Google Scholar to move forward in time to see who has cited the article or book

Evaluating Sources for Best Fit -- UNC Libraries