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Scholarly articles are not the place to start your research. First, you need to get familiar enough with your topic that you can start to narrow it down, and for that you need more general information. This will help you develop context for your topic as well as get to know the specialized terms used by experts.
Full-text art reference (including Grove Art, but not Benezit Dictionary of Artists) covering all visual arts from prehistory to present. Many images included along with articles providing overviews of artists, movements, periods, and places.
Contains links to 5,000 images the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Museum of Modern Art (MOMA), Art Images for College Teaching (AICT), and the Artists Rights Society and text from Encyclopedia of Aesthetics, The Oxford Companion to Western Art, and The Concise Oxford Dictionary of Art Terms.
This guide introduces scholarly content and how it differs from popular and trade information.
Find Popular Sources for Articles
What counts: newspaper articles, magazines, museum websites... credible sources but not scholarly. Random blogs do not count! Really take a look at who is producing the information and whether or not they've given you any reason to trust them.
Use your Lone Star email address to create an account via this link. Once you've made an account, you can go straight to the regular NYT site (nytimes.com) and log in as if you were a paying subscriber.
Full text of 285 journals in literature, history, international/cultural studies and other humanities and social science fields.
Depending on what info you're trying to tackle, different subject-area databases may be helpful -- e.g. Van Gogh's well-known struggles with mental illness could warrant a trip into Psych & Behavioral Sciences Collection.
I've given a few starting points, but you may also want to explore the larger lists of databases for more options.
Be sure to look for the checkboxes for "full text" and "scholarly (peer-reviewed)" in these!
They can be! Note that a scholarly book is not just any old nonfiction title, but they can be a little harder to distinguish sometimes.
Was it published by a university (e.g. Oxford University Press, University of North Carolina Press)? Pretty good odds that it's scholarly.
Does it have citations, both in-text and at the end? (It could use footnotes... but the important thing is all the information is very clearly documented as to its original source.)
Who's the author? If they're a PhD in the topic of discussion (i.e. an expert), again, it's pretty good odds they've written something scholarly... but still pay attention to the style (is it formal or fun and friendly? again, are there thorough citations?).
You can search the library catalog (below) with keyword, title, author, etc -- pretty much like using Amazon. (The catalog also finds most of our e-books, but it's still a good idea to search those collections directly.)
COVID update: Some of the campuses are doing item pick-up but most (including UP) still are not. The Harris County Public Library branches are, though. You can request books be sent to an HCPL branch near you (Barbara Bush is the closest location to campus) for curbside pick-up. Return items to a contactless item return drop at the library.
You are on a bit of a deadline, so you want to be sure you can get a book your want on time!
Click into the book to see how many copies there are, and whether anyone else has a hold ahead of you. If there's one copy and 3 people waiting, it could be 6 weeks before it's your turn.
If all looks good, click "Place Hold" to request the book. You'll have to sign in with your library barcode number (2313660xxxxxxx) and 4-digit PIN, typically the last 4 numbers of the phone number you provided when you had your ID card made. You can choose which location the book is sent to (caveat: it can take 3-5 business days!).
You'll receive an email when your item is ready for you to pick up.
If you really want a book and don't have time to wait for it, call the library that has a copy, ask them to verify it's there, and they'll usually pull the book for you, just like placing a hold through the catalog. Then drive over to that library to get it -- but definitely call before committing to the drive!
Not sure if you have a library account or what your PIN is? Contact our front desk at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Do not use:
Children's books, YA, Juvenile Nonfiction
Does it have pictures, and not just of the art? Not a good sign.
If you're uncertain, look the book up on Amazon to see how they categorize it. If it's got an age group -- especially one that's younger than college age -- move on to a new source.