HIST 195: FYS Global Food History

Barbadoes Mulatto GirlThis is a resource guide for Professor Heather Hoag's First-Year Seminar, A Global History of Food. For research assistance, Ask a Librarian.

Reference Sources

Search or browse reference sources to find background information on food topics.


To find books at the library, search the Library Catalog from the library's home page

Search by keyword using terms that describe the main concept(s) in your topic. A keyword search searches the author, title, subject headings, table of contents, and notes fields

Browse by subject using relevant subject headings, such as the following:

Subject headings are "official" terms that describe a book's content. They are hard to guess on their own. If you find a relevant item, look at the subjects assigned, and try searching on those. 

  • To find your book in the library, refer to the Call Number Location Guide that tell you where to find the book on the shelf. To page an item, click "Request It" in the item record. Your paged items will be ready for you after 5pm the following day at the Circulation Desk. 
  • Books in the library are organized by subject, based on the Library of Congress Classification System

Find books and videos in other libraries using Link+

Click the Link+ icon in the catalog to search for books and videos in over 40 libraries in California and Nevada. Link+ items arrive in 3-4 days to arrive. You should receive an email when the item is ready for pick up. You may borrow requested items for 3 weeks and usually renew for an additional 2 weeks through your library record.


Search the following article library databases to find relevant journal, magazine, and newspaper articles. To see more databases, from the library's home page, click on the "Databases" box. 

  • Fusion Search across the majority of the library's books and articles. Add more keywords or use the limits in the results screen to reduce the number of results. If you get too many results, uncheck the option on the left “Also search within the full text of the articles.”
  • Historical Abstracts Incudes citations and abstracts for publications covering world history (excluding the U.S. and Canada).
  • America: History and Life Includes citations and abstracts for publications covering all aspects of U.S. and Canadian history, culture, and current affairs.
  • SocIndex with Full-Text Many full-text, scholarly articles in the field of sociology. 
  • JSTOR Multi-disciplinary digital archive of back issues (JSTOR generally lacks the latest three years) of hundreds of scholarly journals.    
  • Project Muse Includes full-text scholarly articles from all disciplines, including history. 
  • Google Scholar Google's search engine for scholarly literature. 

If the full-text of the article is not available, click "USF: Find Full Text" to see if the full-text is available in another library database, in print in the library, or for free on the Web. For help using USF: Find Full-Text, see this video tutorial

If you still can’t find the full-text, use Interlibrary Loan/Illiad. There may be a charge for Interlibrary Loan (passed on from the lending library), so be sure to indicate you’re willing to pay at least $15 for the item. Also know it can take up to two weeks to your item to arrive. In general, use Interlibrary Loan/Illiad for articles, or books you cannot obtain via Link+. 


Follow these instructions to see if the library subscribes to a specific journal or to find the full-text of a specific article.

  1. Go to Journal Finder on the library's home page.
  2. Enter the name of the journal, newspaper, or magazine you’re looking for (e.g., New York Times). If we subscribe to that publication, you’ll see what years we have access to. If you’re looking for a specific article, navigate till you find your article. For more help, see this video tutorial

Primary Sources

Library books and articles

Beyond the library

  • Google Books includes the full-text of many books out of copyright (before 1923). After doing a search, go to Search Tools at the top to limit by date. 
  • Hathi Trust Thousands of online books, some of which are available in full-text. 

Web Sites

Food Timeline Created by Lynne Olver, reference librarian. "As with most historical topics, there are some conflicting stories in the field of food history. We do our best to select and present the information with the most documented support." The timeline is from a European perspective and includes links to recipes and food history information on the web.

Library of Congress: Food History Selected guide to works on food history. Focus is works published in English, during the 19th, 20th and 21st centuries, and mainly in the United States. 

Food and Nutrition -- HEARTH: Home Economics Archive Project of the Mann Library at Cornell University, this site includes a brief introductory essay and bibliography of books from the early 1800s - 1950 on cooking, home cooking, nutrition and dietetics, food science, marketing, and food purchasing. Focus is on the United States. 

Menu Collections

Cookbook Collections

Cite Your Sources

Use the auto-citation generator tool found in many of our databases. For example, in Fusion or other EBSCO databases, in a document record, click Cite to the right to view your citation in MLA, APA, or Chicago/Turabian style. 

Use RefWorks to collect and organize your references, and create bibliographies in a variety of citation styles (e.g., APA, MLA, etc.) From Fusion or other EBSCO databases, click Export to export your citations directly to RefWorks.

database export

Consult Purdue OWL for paper formatting and style guidelines. This site is especially helpful if you're citing in MLA or APA style. 

If citing in Chicago style, see the Chicago Manual of Style Online. This quick guide provides sample citations for notes and bibliographies.

Engraving by L.C. Ruottte after oil painting of "Barbadoes Mulatto Girl" by Agostino Brunius. Wikimedia Commons.