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HST 480, Spring 2016, Dr Vanessa Holden. Slave Rebellions and the Abolition Movement: Subject Encyclopedias

Using subject encyclopedas

Use subject encyclopedias to understand the background of your topic, or for context about unfamiliar names or events you encounter while using primary sources. Subject encyclopedias will often cite key scholarly works as well.

Subject encyclopedias in print

African American National Biography. Henry Louis Gates, Jr., and Evelyn Brooks-Higginbotham, eds. NY: Oxford University Press, 2008. Also online.

Africana: The Enclopedia of the African and African American Experience. Kwane Anthony Appiah and Henry Louis Gates, Jr., eds. NY: Oxford University Press, 2005.

American Slave Revolts and Conspiracies: A Reference Guide. Kerry S. Walters. Santa Barbara, CA: ABC-CLIO, 2015.

Encyclopedia of African American Culture and History: The Black Experience in the Americas. Colin A. Palmer, ed. Detroit: Macmillan, 2006.

Encyclopedia of African American History, 1619-1895. Paul Finkelman, ed. NY: Oxford University Press, 2006.

Encyclopedia of African American Writing: Five Centuries of Contributions. Shari Dorantes Hatch, ed. Amenia, NY: Grey House, 2009.

Encyclopedia of Slave Resistance and Rebellion. Junius P. Rodriguez, ed. Westport, CT: Greenwood, 2007.

Encyclopedia of the African Diaspora. Carole Boyce Davies, ed. Santa Barbara, CA: ABC-CLIO, 2008.

Encyclopedia of the Middle Passage. Toyin Falola and Amanda Warnock. Westport, CT: Greenwood, 2007.

Greenwood Encyclopedia of African American Folklore. Anand Prahlad, ed. Westport, CT: Greenwood, 2006.

World of a Slave: Encyclopedia of the Material Life of Slaves in the United States. Martha B. Katz-Hyman and Kym S. Rice, eds. Santa Barbara, CA: Greenwood, 2011.

Subject encyclopedias online

African American National Biography. Henry Louis Gates, Jr., and Evelyn Brooks-Higginbotham, eds. NY: Oxford University Press, 2010. Also in print.

Encyclopedia of African American History. Leslie M. Alexander and Walter C. Rucker, eds. Santa Barbara, CA: ABC-CLIO, 2010.

Encyclopedia of African American History, 1619-1895. Paul Finkelman, ed. NY: Oxford University Press, 2006.

SAGE Encyclopedia of African Cultural Heritage in North America. Mwalimu J. Shujaa, ed. Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE, 2015.

Find subject encyclopedias in the library catalog

The subject headings for a subject encyclopedia will always include the word encyclopedias (plural) to indicate the format of the work. For example, see the subject headings for The Encyclopedia of African American Writing below:

Abridged catalog record for Encyclopedia of African American Writing

Of course, in this example the word "encyclopedia" (singular) was also in the title. But by searching this way, you would also retrieve useful titles like The Handbook of African American Literature, The Concise Oxford Companion to African American Literature, and so on.

Therefore, you can easily find subject encyclopedias on any topic by doing keyword search for your topic area and the word encyclopedias. For example:

  • african americans and politics and encyclopedias
  • harlem renaissance and encyclopedias

Finding Subject Encyclopedia Articles Through SearchPlus

STEP 1. Go to the library's home page at lib.msu.edu and look for the SearchPlus box. Type keywords on your topic.

MSU Libraries website with terms "hip hop education" in search box

 

STEP 2. You'll get a huge number of hits. Use the filters on the left to narrow your search. To narrow your results to articles in subject encyclopedias, limit the Content Type to Reference. (To do that, you must expand the Content Type list by clicking More.)

 

STEP 3. Now that the Content Type is limited to Reference, the results point only to articles in subject encyclopedias.

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