Are you familiar with the fabulous reference sources for world history in the World History Resource Center and Virtual Reference Library? If not, you’re missing out! I’ve attached a PDF that lists the world history reference sources in these two databases (download: globalstudies_ref_whrc_vrl)
One of my favorites is the 21-volume History in Dispute series. It focuses on historical issues about which scholars disagree. Reading their arguments is thought-provoking and can help generate ideas for a research topic of your own. The MW library owns a print set too, but if you know a little trick, you can access it from home. Here’s what you do…
- Go to the World History Resource Center
- Switch from basic to advanced search
- Enter your search term(s) – for example, Kurds. Remember to start with a general topic and add terms only as necessary to narrow your results. Databases are smaller universes than the World Wide Web.
- In the search box below your search term(s), select Source from the drop-down menu and type the title of the source you’d like to search (or a title key word, such as dispute for History in Dispute).
For the example search (Kurds/source – dispute), one of your results would be scholarly pro/con essays regarding the creation of an independent Kurdish state.
Another reminder – you must search WHRC directly – the results are not included in a PowerSearch.
In contrast, articles from the e-books in the Virtual Reference Library WILL show up in a PowerSearch under the Books tab. You may also go to the Gale database main menu and open VRL directly to limit your search to these e-books or select an e-book from the title list (click Show All to view the complete list) and browse its table of contents, etc.
Happy researching! Don’t you just love learning?!