ENGL 410: Asian American Literature

asian american literature book covers

Literary Criticism and Biographies

Use the databases below to find literary criticism as well as book reviews. 

  • Literature Resource Center (LRC) A full-text literature database that includes biographical and contextual information on authors, as well as excerpts of literary criticism and critical essays on their works (fiction, nonfiction, poetry, drama, history, and journalism).
  • Literature Criticism Online Full-text and excerpted criticism, essays, and reviews beginning from the date of publication, up to the present. Particularly useful for looking at the reception of a work in its own time, or to view the changing reputation of a work or author over time. Includes the following print series:  Contemporary Literary Criticism, Twentieth-Century Literary Criticism, Poetry Criticism, Short Story Criticism, and Drama Criticism.
  • MLA International Bibliography The largest and most comprehensive database covering scholarship in the modern languages, linguistics, literature, folklore, and drama. Literary criticism and literary theory are covered extensively. Contains bibliographical records or citations dating from 1926 to present. Unlike Literature Resource Center, this database only contains bibliographic citations.
  • Humanities Source Article database containing over 1,480 full text journals covering all aspects of the humanities. Search by author or name of work. 

Here is a sampling of reference sources in our library that provide information about authors and specific works:

  • Dictionary of Literary Biography Career biographies, tracing the development of the author's canon and the evolution of his reputation. "The purpose of DLB is ... to place the figures in the larger perspective of literary history and to offer appraisals of their accomplishments by qualified scholars."
  • Gale Virtual Reference Library Database of over 80 online encyclopedias; good for finding background information on a topic.

Print Sources

Background Information

Here is a sampling of reference sources where you can find background information on Asian Americans:

Print Sources


Search the library catalog for books on literary theory and criticism as well Asian American history and culture.

Use the limits on the left-hand side of the results screen to focus your search.  

Subject headings are "official" subject headings approved by the Library of Congress; they are hard to guess on your own.  You can use keywords, titles, or authors, to point you to relevant subject headings. For example, a keyword search on "Japanese Americans internment" leads to you to the book Historical Memories of the Japanese American Internment and the Struggle for Redress by Alice Yang Murray. Looking at that book's catalog record, you can browse subject headings assigned to this book:  Japanese Americans -- Evacuation and relocation, 1942-1945Japanese Americans -- ReparationsWorld War, 1939-1945 -- Japanese AmericansCollective memory -- United States.   

Don’t forget to use Link+ to access books from 40+ libraries!

Journal, Magazine, and Newspaper Articles

These general databases index popular magazines, newspapers, and academic journals. They contain abstracts and citations, as well as some full-text articles. They can be used for finding critical essays as well as book reviews.

  • Fusion Search the majority of the library's databases in one place. Excludes many articles from ProQuest databases.
  • Ethnic NewsWatch, which is a full-text collection of the newspapers, magazines, and journals from the ethnic and minority press.
  • JSTOR Archive of selected, core, scholarly journals in many disciplines including the arts and sciences.
  • Project Muse Full-text database of over 100 scholarly publications, including many in the humanities.
  • Google Scholar Search engine for scholarly articles across many disciplines.


Articles from Subject Specific Databases  

For more subject specific databases, browse Databases by subject.  

National Newspapers


San Francisco Newspapers