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Women's & Gender Studies: Books & Background

Tips, techniques & links to help you find answers for your research papers & projects

Finding Books

To find BOOKS, you have several options beyond the "Books & Media" tab found on the MU Libraries homepage:

MERLIN : Use the MERLIN Catalog to find books at MU and the other campuses of the University of Missouri. If we don't have the book here at MU or if our copy is checked out, you can request it from another UM library by searching ALL MERLIN.

MOBIUSIf the book you need is not available through MERLIN, you can request it from MOBIUS, a statewide network of  Missouri college and university libraries.

ILL (Interlibrary Loan):  If the book you need is not available through MERLIN or MOBIUS, you can request it via Interlibrary Loan or WorldCATan international catalog containing over 95 million records of books and other materials held in libraries worldwide.

Laws & Policies

If you are trying to track down a specific policy, law, or the background ( legislative history) of a law, there are several good options depending what you are trying to find.  These resources additionally provide opposing arguments to current issues and policies:

Background Info

Sometimes it is useful to get an overview of a topic before beginning your research in order to find a starting point.  These resources will help you look into the background of your topic.

Gale Virtual Reference Library is an online collection of dozens of encyclopedias, handbooks, and guides.  Type in your search term, or the title of a publication.  Here are a few potential W&GS sources available through Gale Virtual Reference, accumulated as a sampling of sources from  "History" "Literature" and  "Social Sciences:"

Encyclopedia of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgendered History in America, 2004

   Encyclopedia of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgendered History in America

   American Women Writers: A Critical Reference Guide from Colonial Times

   FeminiFeminism in Literature: A Gale Critical Companion, 2005sm in Literature: A Gale Critical Companion

   Encyclopedia of Sex and Gender: Men and Women in the World's Cultures

   Cambridge Guide to Women's Writing in English


Other reference materials can be found through the encyclopedias located in the Reference Database List.

Further background information can be found in individual articles through searching for terms such as "women AND gender," or feminism.  Due to the interdisciplinary nature of W&GS, these articles may be found within reference materials for religion, history, philosophy, sociology, health, and many more.

Google Books

Why use Google Books?

Google Books searches the full-text of books.  It lets you search within the text of books--you can see the table of contents, index or a portion of the contents of the book.  You can then locate the book in a nearby library.

Google Book Search