Literary Criticism

Online Encyclopedias

The following links will take you to online encyclopedias and reference manuals to help you get started on your research. Here you can find general background information, definitions, and history on many literary terms and concepts specific to literary criticism.

Print Encyclopedias

The library also has a number of print encyclopedias that can be found in the Reference section on the second floor of the library. Reference books cannot be checked out of the library, but there are scanners available on the second floor that can be used to scan information from these texts into a PDF which you can email to yourself.

Finding Articles

Use databases to find academic articles to continue your research. Below are the most helpful databases for finding relevant articles for literary criticism topics. The MLA International Bibliography is the most popular, as it indexes most published works in literature. Make sure to click the "full text" option when searching if you are looking for the full article PDF. 

Good Starting Journals for Literary Criticism

The following are links to specific academic journals which are published and peer-reviewed by experts in the field. If you want to narrow your search to a specific time period or genre, finding a journal that publishes in that area can help.

Search the entire library catalog here.

You can search "everything", or can specify the type of results, like books or articles.  Some helpful tips for searching:

  • Stick with keywords or phrases, instead of questions. So, instead of searching "what are some topics in literary criticism?" you would search "topics literary criticism" instead.

Materials on Literature topics are found under the "P" category more generally. These materials can be found on the third floor of the library. 

PR1-56  Literary history and criticism 
Featured Books 

Currently, the featured books section holds some of the newest additions to the library's collection of research-worthy, literary texts on criticism.