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American Literature: Finding Articles


1. Start at the library’s home page:

2. Click the "Databases" tab.

3. Click "Subject database listing" to list databases by subject. 

4. Sign in with your LEA username and password.

5. From the subject list, select “English and Modern Languages.”

Each database on the list includes at least a few literary journals.

The MLA International Bibliography Online is best for critical articles from journals and books.

MLA International Bibliography
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Magill On Literature Plus is best for overviews.

Magill On Literature Plus
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The Literature Resource Center contains a mix of author biographies, reference information, and criticism.

Finding Articles

Finding Articles in the Databases

Use research databases to find articles. Our largest database for literature is the MLA International Bibliography Online, but there are others, too. Follow the directions in the left-side box to get to the databases.

MLA International Bibliography
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Finding criticism on a particular work in the MLA database is easy!

1.       Enter the author’s last name in the first search box (For example, “Faulkner”)

2.      Enter the title of the work in the second search box (For example, “As I Lay Dying”)

3.      Hitting enter will bring up a list of citations.  These are all the items in the database that contain information on both Faulkner AND As I Lay Dying.  *FYI: This list also contains all the information needed for your Works Cited Page

4.      Citations with linked full text or a PDF full text link can be viewed online, saved, or printed.

5.      If the article is not full text in the MLA database, look up the journal in Journal Finder to see if the journal is full text in a different database. To searh for a journal in our library click on the "Journals" tab on the library homepage and enter the title of the Journal/Magazine/Newspaper.

6.      A computer icon will indicate we have online access to at least some issues from that Journal.  Clicking on the computer icon will take you to the list of databases we subscribe to that offer access to that journal.  The available dates will be found on the right.  An open book icon indicates we have access to issues of that journal or magazine in print.  Clicking on the book icon will take you to our print holdings for that journal.


Ask for help at the reference desk on the first floor if you need help locating books or journals.

If a book or article isn’t available here online or in print, you can order it through interlibrary loan. The request form is online at the library’s web site (​).


Bloom's Literary Reference Online

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If you've read and re-read the work but still don't know where to begin, try Bloom's Literary Reference Online.  It has a biographies, overviews, criticism and step-by-step advice on "How to Write a Good Essay."