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English 2700/Anthropology 2150: Introduction to Folklore Field Research  

Last Updated: Mar 12, 2012 URL: Print Guide RSS UpdatesEmail Alerts
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Local Resources

Researching local groups, sites, events, or practices can be difficult because they may not be documented in national-level publications or reference sources. You'll need to consult local archives or publications that may not be indexed in the major databases. Here are some clues to follow:

  1. Contact the group or person you're researching. See if they have an archive of memorabilia, diaries, reports, or can suggest people you can interview.
  2. Check local publications, like the Savitar, The Missouri Alumnus or local newspapers. If the newspaper does not have an online archive, contact them to see if they maintain a paper clippings file or index to back issues.
    Columbia Daily Tribune
    The Columbia Missourian
    Newsbank provides access to several Missouri newspapers.
    LexisNexis Academic has a section of college newspapers.
    Internet Public Library lists newspapers geographically.
  3. Consult local archives. The University Archives collects materials from official University organizations, but has only a little on student groups.
  4. Consult local historical societies and public libraries
    Boone County Historical Society
    Missouri Digital Heritage
    Daniel Boone Regional Library community page.

Scholarly Sources

  • Academic Search Complete  
    Academic Search Complete provides full-text for more than 8,600 periodicals, including more than 7,500 peer-reviewed journals. It also offers indexing and abstracts for more than 12,500 journals.
  • MLA International Bibliography  
    MLA indexes critical scholarship in the modern languages, literatures, linguistics and folklore.
  • Sociological Abstracts  
    CSA Sociological Abstracts abstracts and indexes the international literature in sociology and related disciplines in the social and behavioral sciences.
  • America History and Life  
    America History and Life contains citations and abstracts of books, dissertations, and articles from approximately 2,000 journals published worldwide. Covers all aspects of U.S. and Canadian history, culture, and current affairs from prehistoric times to the present.
  • JSTOR  
    JSTOR is a full-text database consisting of the Arts and Sciences I, II, III, IV, Complement, Ecology & Botany and General Science Collections which provide access to the back files of over 300 scholarly journals from the sciences, social sciences and arts and humanities.
  • MERLIN catalog
    MERLIN searches for books and other materials held by the MU Libraries.
  • Google Book Search
    Google has digitized many books, so this search indexes books cover to cover, allowing more specific searching than the MERLIN catalog. You may not be able to view books published after 1923, but use the "Find in a Library" link to locate a copy of the book.
  • Summon
    Summon searches within the full-text of many databases, journals, and books.

Subject Librarian

Just for Fun

  • Human Relations Area File  
    Human Relations Area File covers cultural anthropology, ethnographies of world cultures, especially developing countries and some U.S. immigrant groups.
  • Ethnographic Video Online  Icon
    Ethnographic Video Online will provide more than 750 hours and 1,000 films at completion. The collection covers every region of the world and includes interviews, previously unreleased raw footage, field notes, study guides, interviews with filmmakers, contemporaneous footage and photographs and more. All videos in the collection are transcribed, subject-indexed and fully searchable. Trial access provided as we process the purchase.

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