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English and Literature Resources: Literary Criticism


To locate literary criticism in a library catalog, search for the author as a subject and use the terms "criticism" and "interpretation" in your search. A Subject search for a literary author will usually bring up a category of items representing criticism, e.g., Shakespeare, William, 1564-1616 Criticism and interpretation.

Finding Literary Criticism

Literary criticism is often difficult to find on the web. Scholars who write literary criticism tend to publish their work in books and book chapters, in scholarly journals, in professional conference proceedings, and as book reviews in magazines. To locate these materials, the best place to start looking is in online catalogs and databases located in this guide.

Search Books & Media


Search the Cheng Library online catalog for books and media. If you need journal articles, go to our Databases page.

Journal Articles

For journal articles and other criticism not published in books, use the Literature Resource Center or the MLA International Bibliography. Both of these databases focus on literature and are the best first places to search. You can supplement searches in these databases with searches in Academic Search Complete and ProQuest Central, which include articles from literary journals.

The Library also provides browsable and searchable lists of journals in language and literature in its Journals and Periodicals Directory. The Directory is most useful for checking the availability of a specific journal when you have a citation. The following links will take you to the directory's lists of journals in subject areas relevant to English language and literary studies:

Web Resources

Here are several web resources you may want to consult when doing your English and Literature research.