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SPAN 7691: Seminar on Spanish American Literature: Finding Research Resources

Search Terms

Library of Congress Subject Headings

--> Each region or country will have slightly different chronological headings, and the chronological divisions are different for history and literature. Search for the country or region (e.g. Southern Cone of South America) and look at the chronological headings.  

Note also that materials are classified to the level of specificity of the item, i.e., a book on Pedro Páramo won't have "Rulfo, Juan" as a heading, and a book just on Rulfo won't have "Mexican literature--History and criticism" as a heading.

Latin American literature--History and criticism.

<Country name as adjective> literature--History and criticism. (Peruvian literature--History and criticism.)

<Movement or person name>--History and criticism. (Negritude--History and criticism. Palés Matos, Gustavo, 1907-1963.)

For Contextual Aspects of Latin American Literature

Latin America--History.

--Politics and government

--Social life and customs

--Intellectual life

<Country name>--History.

--Politics and government

--Social life and customs

--Intellectual life

Primary vs. Secondary Resources

Sources are distinguished by how close they are to the original data:

  1. primary resources -- data collected from the field, from archives and documents, and from the artistic, literary, and cultural texts and artifacts studied.
  2. secondary resources -- books and articles studying primary resources or cultural and historical phenomena (including people, places, languages, events, and artifacts), and generally using other secondary sources.  Secondary sources are essentially a long conversation about things, which are themselves part of a conversation at a somewhat different level.
  3. tertiary resources -- guides, handbooks, dictionaries, and encyclopedias that gather information from secondary resources to disseminate it.

Databases and Catalogs

To Find Materials (not specific to U of Memphis):

WorldCat has two interfaces:

You can establish an account in either of the interfaces.  In the new interface, you can save records to lists, and generate bibliographies.  In the New WorldCat, ILL requests are automated.

To Find What the U of Memphis Holds:

On the "All Databases" page: http://sierra.memphis.edu/search~S4/y

Choose the second box ("Databases by academic area or category") and select "Latin American Studies" or "Literature"

All of these provide the relatively seamless access to articles:

Database
MLA International Bibliography 
JSTOR searches must have specific-enough terms or will return many random hits
EBSCO Humanities Full Text

To Get Materials That the U of Memphis Does NOT Hold: