Sample search terms
Your research will be on the 'big idea' of alternative worlds. But the phrase 'alternative worlds' probably isn't a good search phrase. So, what words should you search with?
Start instead with the title of one of the texts you are writing about: utopia, the dispossessed, etc. Or use the name of the alternative world you are interested in: erewhon, or even the more general terms utopia or distopia.
You will be looking in either the Oskicat catalog, or one of the literary database listed on this page [left column].Read more
Literary Criticism and Resources
MLA International Bibliography
Scholarly articles on literary topics. Use UC-eLinks button to get to the articles themselves.
Literature Resource Center (LRC)
Includes biographies, bibliographies, and critical analyses of more than 120,000 novelists, poets, essayists, journalists, and other writers. Scope is international. Full text.
Several hundred scholarly journals in the humanities and social sciences. Topics include literature and criticism, history, the visual and performing arts, cultural studies, education, political science, gender studies, economics and many others.
Easy to use, full text, multi-disciplinary scholarly article database. Note: the most recent 3-5 years of the journals are usually not available through JSTOR.
Academic Search Complete
A multi-disciplinary database that includes both scholarly and popular articles. Most articles have pdfs.
Includes more than 350,000 works of English and American poetry, drama and prose, 131 full-text literature journals, and other key criticism and reference resources. Includes reference works on literary criticism and biographical information.
Where's the PDF?
Many article databases contain information about articles (citations or abstracts), not the entire text of the article. Once you've used an article database to find articles on your topic, you may need to use this button: in order to locate and read the full text of the article. The UC-eLinks button appears in nearly all the databases available from the UCB Library website.
UC-eLinks will link you to the online full text of an article if UCB has paid for online access; otherwise, UC-eLinks will help you locate a print copy on the shelf in the library. If UCB doesn't own the article in print or online format, UC-eLinks can also help you order a copy from another library.
For more information, watch this video tutorial (about 4 min.)
You can also set up UC-eLinks to work with Google Scholar. For more information, watch this video tutorial (about 2 min.)
Searching Library Catalogs
Use OskiCat to locate materials related to your topic, including books, government publications, and audio and video recordings, in the libraries of UC Berkeley. OskiCat will show you the location and availability of the items that we own.
- Using OskiCat (but not Melvyl) you can also renew your books online, look up course reserve materials by course number or instructor name, and place holds on items that other library users have already checked out.
Use Melvyl to locate materials related to your topic located at other campuses in the UC system, or worldwide. You can use the Request button to request an item from another library, if we don't own it.
- Using Melvyl (but not OskiCat) you can find articles as well as books, easily format a citation for copying into a bibliography, and see images of book covers, when available. Melvyl will also show you the location and availablity of items that we own.
Melvyl has changed as of January 2012, and now includes many more articles. Detailed Melvyl help
Google Books contains millions of scanned books, from libraries and publishers worldwide. You can search the entire text of the books, view previews or "snippets" from books that are still in copyright, and read the full text of out-of-copyright (pre-1923) books. Want to read the entire text of an in-copyright book? Use Google Books' Find in a Library link to locate the book in a UC Berkeley library, or search OskiCat to see if UC Berkeley owns the book.
Why use Google Books?
Library catalogs (like OskiCat) don't search inside books; using a library catalog, you can search only information about the book (title, author, Library of Congress subject headings, etc.). Google Books will let you search inside books, which can be very useful for hard-to-find information. Try it now: