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ENG 500: Problems and Methods of Literary Study : Home

This guide links to resources that will be useful to you throughout your graduate work at PSU, but especially focuses on research to support the bibliography assignment in Dr Murpuri's 'Problems and Methods of Literary Study', Fall 2017.

Library Search Engines

Discover by Seeing - Browse

Browsing the shelves of the library can be an excellent way to discover material. Browsing can add depth to your research because it can allow you to find books on topics you didn't know existed or books that use terms you hadn't considered or known about. The collocation of books by topic in the library stacks can also provide an orientation to a subject area.

In the Library of Congress classification system, literatures in English are given call numbers in the PR and PS range.  A very broad outline is here.

PR1-9680 English literature

PR1-56 Literary history and criticism
PR57-78 Criticism
PR111-116 Women authors
PR125-(138.5) Relations to other literatures and countries

PR161-488 By period
PR171-236 Anglo-Saxon (Beginnings through 1066)
PR251-369 Medieval. Middle English (1066-1500)
PR401-488 Modern
PR421-(429) Elizabethan era (1550-1640)
PR431-(439) 17th century
PR441-(449) 18th century
PR451-(469) 19th century
PR471-(479) 20th century
PR481-488 21st century

PR500-614 Poetry
PR521-614 By period

PR621-744 Drama
PR641-744 By period

PR750-890 Prose
PR767-818 By period

PR821-890 Prose fiction. The novel
PR901-907.2 Oratory
PR908 Diaries
PR911-918 Letters
PR921-928 Essays
PR931-938 Wit and humor
PR(951)-981 Folk literature
PR1098-1369 Collections of English literature

PR1110 Special classes of authors
PR1119-1151 By period
PR1170-1228 Poetry
PR1241-1273 Drama
PR1281-1309 Prose (General)
PR1321-1329 Oratory
PR1330 Diaries
PR1341-1349 Letters
PR1361-1369 Essays

PR1490-1799 Anglo-Saxon literature
PR1803-2165 Anglo-Norman period. Early English. Middle English
PR2199-3195 English renaissance (1500-1640)
PR3291-3785 17th and 18th centuries (1640-1770)
PR3991-5990 19th century, 1770/1800-1890/1900
PR6000-6049 1900-1960
PR6050-6076 1961-2000
PR6100-6126 2001-

PR8309-9680 English literature: Provincial, local, etc. 

PS1-3576 American literature

PS126-138 Biography, memoirs, letters, etc.
PS147-152 Women authors
PS163-173 Treatment of special subjects, classes

PS185-231 By period
PS185-195 17th-18th centuries
PS201-217 19th century
PS221-228 20th century
PS229-231 21st century

PS241-286 Special regions, states, etc.
PS241-255 North
PS261-267 South
PS271-285 West and Central

PS301-326 Poetry
PS330-353 Drama
PS360-380 Prose
PS370-380 Prose fiction
PS400-408.2 Oratory
PS409 Diaries
PS410-419 Letters
PS420-429 Essays
PS430-439 Wit and humor. Satire
PS(451)-478 Folk literature
PS490 Juvenile literature (General)

PS501-689 Collections of American literature
PS530-536.3 By period
PS537-574 By region
PS538-549 North
PS551-559 South
PS561-572 West and Central

PS580-619 Poetry
PS593 By form
PS601-617 By period

PS623-(635) Drama

PS642-659.5 Prose (General)
PS651-659.2 By period

PS660-668.2 Oratory
PS666-668.2 By period

PS669 Diaries
PS670-678.2 Letters
PS680-689 Essays

PS700-3576 Individual authors
PS700-893 Colonial period (17th and 18th centuries)
PS991-(3390) 19th century
PS3500-3549 1900-1960
PS3550-3576 1961-2000
PS3600-3626 2001-

PS(8001-8599) Canadian literature


Databases and Review Journals

The MLA International Bibliography appears first on the list as this database is major resource for doing research in literature of all languages. You will also find it useful for linguistics and folklore.

  • MLA International Bibliography Citations to journal articles, dissertations, and books in literature, language, linguistics, and folklore from the early 1920's to the present. Documentation from MLA on searching the bibliography, how the fields are defined. etc.
  • Literature Online - LION Features a collection of over 260,000 works of American, English, and Modern poetry, drama, and prose with complementary reference and secondary resources. Includes the Annual Bibliography of English Language and Literature (ABELL), containing more than 880,000 records, covering monographs, periodical articles, critical editions of literary works, book reviews and collections of essays published anywhere in the world from 1920 onwards.
  • Literature Resource Center
    Provides information on literary figures from all time periods writing in such genres as fiction, nonfiction, poetry, drama, history, journalism, and more.

"Bucket o'full text". Online fulltext journals; in JSTOR's case an archive going back to the beginning of a journal's publication and coming forward to within three-five years of the present.

    Contains historical backfiles of full text articles from major research journals in the humanities, social sciences, and sciences.
  • ProjectMuse
    Full text articles and ebooks from scholarly presses.

Review journals

  • Literature Compass
    Literature Compass is an online-only journal publishing peer-reviewed survey articles of the most important research and current thinking from across the entire discipline.
What's the best book on my topic?
  • Oxford Bibliographies Online
    Scholarly annotated bibliographies covering topics of interest in American and British & Irish Literature. Each subject entry is broken down by the critical and historical subtopics relevant to the work, author, or period.

Subject Guide

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Sarah Beasley
ML 220-G,
by appointment