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English Department Professor Book Spotlight

Terms, Backgrounds, Definitions

Terminology, Background & Definitions

The Reference Collection (Second Floor, Drinko Library) contains many specialized encyclopedias, dictionaries, and guides that provide definitions, background information, critical surveys, and bibliographies.

  • A Handbook to Literature  11th edition Ref. PN41 .H355 2009 
    Gives generally brief definitions, with related examples, of terms related to literature in English. Alphabetically arranged.

  • The Penguin Dictionary of Literary Terms and Literary Theory 4th edition Ref. PN41 .C83 1999 

  • Encyclopedia of Contemporary Literary Theory Ref. PN81 .E43 1993 
    Three sections to this volume cover in an alphabetical arrangement: critical approaches, individual scholars, and terminology. Signed articles are 2-3 pages and include primary and secondary bibliographies. Published by the University of Toronto.

  • The Johns Hopkins Guide to Literary Theory & Criticism Ref. PN81 .J554 1994 
    An alphabetically arranged volume that provides substantial, signed articles on individual critics, theories, and topics.

  • The New Princeton Encyclopedia of Poetry and Poetics Ref. PN1021 .N39 1993
    Signed articles, with bibliographic references, that define and illustrate terms, discuss movements, survey national poetries, define poetic forms, and other topics that relate to poetry.

  • Benét's Reader's Encyclopedia Ref. PN41 .B4 1987
    Short, unsigned articles, alphabetically arranged, that define and explain literary terms, works, authors, places, and characters.

  • Encyclopedia of World Literature in the 20th Century Ref. PN771 .E5 1999 vol.1-4 
    Substantial signed articles with global coverage of the authors, topics, and literary movements of the 20th century.

  • The Oxford Companion to African American Literature Ref. PS153.N5 O96 1997 
    Provides extensive signed articles, including historical overviews, biographies of authors and other important people, discussions of major works and character types.

  • Dictionary of Native American Literature Ref. PM155 .D53 1994 
    Lengthy, signed articles on types of literature, historical development, and important writers.

  • Encyclopedia of Feminist Literary Theory Ref. PN98.W64 E53 1997
    Short, signed articles with bibliographies on the people, terms, and topics related to feminist theory.

  • The Gay and Lesbian Literary Heritage : A Reader's Companion to the Writers and their Works, from Antiquity to the Present Ref. PN56.H57
    G365 1995

    Signed articles that provide overviews and in-depth critical essays on writers, topics, and terms.

Research and Instruction Services Librarian

Eryn Roles
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