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Michigan State University

HST 486 Sec 002: Gender, Revolution and the CIA In Latin America: Identifying Primary Sources

Professor Edward Murphy, Fall 2017

What Are Primary Sources?

Primary sources are generally defined as first-hand accounts of events. They may be published (in books or articles) or unpublished manuscripts. A primary source is an original work, not derived from other sources, and include first-person accounts, such as diaries, letters or interviews, official government records and court records. Visual records, such as painting or photographs, as well as films, television programs and even advertisements are also primary sources.

Look for primary sources in the MSU Catalog by utlizing the following terms in a Keyword search. For example, primary sources for the Central American revolutions and civil wars may include terms like these in the Subject headings, but start by using them in keyword searches.

description and travel
personal narratives

For example, try using the above terms combined with "revolution*," "coup," "nationalism," etc., and with a place name, like Cuba, Southern Cone or Latin America.

To search for the writings of a known figure, search the name as an Author search.

To find information about important figures, use a Subject search.

Use the same strategies when using indexes to find journal articles.

Annals of America

Annals of America. Chicago, Encyclopaedia Britannica, c1968. [E178 .A58 Main Stacks]

v. 17. 1950-1960: Cold War in the Nuclear Age.--v. 18. 1961-1968: The burdens of World Power.

v. 19-20. Great Issues in American Life; A Conspectus.

The first volume [19] of the Conspectus can be used to identify relevant passages in the documents in vols. 17 and 18. Refer to Chapter 8, "Foreign Policy and Diplomacy." References follow the essay, by topic.

The documents in vols. 1-18 are primary sources in American history, some of which have relevance to U.S.-Latin American relations.

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