Library Research Guide
Secondary sources interpret historical events within a social or historical context. They rely both on primary sources (to represent the historical event under question) and other secondary sources (to place the event within the context existing research and theories.)
Researchers writing secondary sources may disagree with each other or focus on different aspects of an historical event. Researchers approach historical events through the lens of:
A more complete understanding is gained when multiple sources are consulted.
Historiographies are a specific kind of secondary source, written to present and summarize trends in historical research on a subject. They can vary in length from a section of an article to whole books.
A variant on the historiography is a bibliography. A bibliography can range from a list of citations on a topic to a book attempting to identify all works published on a particular topic. Bibliographies were more common prior to the Internet, but some are still produced. Depending on your topic, a bibliography from prior decades may fill gaps in the research, particularly for journals not included in databases or out of print books.
History is an interdisciplinary field; you may discover valuable information in our databases for other disciplines.
Dissertations & Theses
Government and Law