COLWRIT R4B: (The Idea of) Prison

Who is writing about my topic ?

Who is likely to be writing about your topic?  

  • Popular press (news, magazines, websites, etc.)
  • Scholars (journal literature, books, etc.)
  • Both ?

Many resources focus on literature published in a specific field.  So, you need to consider which disciplines are likely to be examining your topic. 

While everyone will be writing about some aspect of prison, some may choose to look in databases focused on education, or psychology, or sociology, or film studies, based on their specific focus.

* Considering the above will help you select a resource to meet your needs. It's not all about keywords, but where you search. *

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Where are they writing about my topic ?

Consider the currency of your topic. Different types of publications serve different functions, and have different production timeframes (tutorial snippet on the information timeline, and the content focus of different types of resources).

Is anybody writing about my topic ?

It depends. Information doesn't exist in a void, generated on demand -- someone has to have created it. 

If your topic is widely studied, or current news, finding topical materials won't be hard.  On the other hand, just because you can imagine a topic, doesn't mean others are writing about/studying it.

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Last Update: February 23, 2012 11:03