This guide serves as a starting point for locating and evaluating information for English.

Library Research Guide

Start Here

Whether researching an aspect of today's popular culture in the U.S. or kinship in the Balkans, start your search in the database ProQuest Research Library. It covers publications ranging from popular titles like:

  • Daily Beast
  • Variety
  • New Yorker
  • Jet
  • Outdoor Life

to academic/scholarly titles like:

  • Economist
  • Journal of Leisure Research
  • Asian Ethnology

Cultures & Identities

Gain insight by understanding the culture and identities encountered in a cultural object.


Need more information? Search in Search It for terms that identify a culture or identity and the term encyclopedia or dictionary.

For example:

  • punk AND encyclopedia
  • workers AND encyclopedia

Too many hits? Click on the K-State Libraries only tab and the majority of your results will be books or films owned by K-State, including print and ebooks.

These databases explore cultures and identities. All include academic materials, but you may find popular or community publications, too.

Cultural Expression

These databases provide primarily academic resources discussing how cultures express themselves.


Scholarly Sources

Search these sources for articles, books, and chapters that provide context on historical events and people.

America: History and Life covers U.S. and Canadian history. It features an Advanced Search feature that will let you limit your search to a time frame in history.

Project Muse, JSTOR, and ACLS Humanities Ebooks also include extensive historical academic sources.

Primary Sources

Primary sources date from the same time period or were written/created about an event by someone who experienced or witnessed it. 

Sources that provide historical context include, but are not limited to: newspapers articles, letters, maps, music, diaries, and cultural objects.

Primary sources may be found in: databases, archives, museums, digital collections, books, personal collections (photo albums, attics, filing cabinets).

Digital Collections from Museums and Archives:

Many archives and museums digitize items in their collections to make them more widely available online. Their websites will may include digital archives or digital collections. 

Primary source materials are often collected and made accessible by cultural institutions. Consider the country, social group, and activity that is the focus of your research. Look for related museums, libraries, and clubs/associations that may have digitized materials from their collections.

United States


Communities and Identities

Collections with a Special Focus


Library Databases:

K-State Libraries subscribe to a number of primary source databases.  These include:


Databases with Images.

Databases with Digitized Texts

Databases with Music and Audio



Whether researching an author or a historical figure who appears in a work, these academic and scholarly biographies include references to additional sources of information.