English 111 – Lukomski

drawing of comedy and tragedy masks

About this Guide

This guide provides tips and tricks for finding print and online resources for your final paper in English 111 with Professor Lukomski. Use the tabs above to navigate through the pages of the guide.

Your Assignment:

A research project based on one or more of the three plays studied in the course (A Hairy Ape, Doll’s House, and Dutchman), using a minimum of three critical (scholarly) essays and one discussion, such as a review, of the play in production.

Paper Writing Assistance

About SBCC’s Writing Center
The SBCC Learning Resource Center writing tools online

Need more help?

If you need more help with research, ask a librarian! Stop by the Reference Desk, or contact a librarian by phone, email, or chat for more help.

Developing Keywords

Sometimes the words you use to describe a topic are different than the words used by the library catalog or database. The trick with searching a library catalog or database is to discover the words they use!

    For example, another keyword for “stage craft” may be “set design” or “scenery”

    OR, another keyword for “play” may be “drama” or “performance”

Before you search, try coming up with several ways to describe the topic. Using this technique will improve your success with searching as you’ll have alternative terms ready if your initial search doesn’t work.

For this assignment, try adding one or more of the following terms to your selected work or playwright’s name:

  • playwright
  • criticism
  • criticism and interpretation
  • analysis and interpretation
  • history and criticism
  • drama
  • theater/theatre
  • theater studies OR theatre studies
  • theater review OR theatrical review
  • production

Using Reference Sources for Background Research

Reference sources are an excellent starting point for background information on your topic. Reference sources can also be helpful when trying to identify keywords to use in other searches — when reviewing a reference source, you may find unique terminology that you can borrow to search for more specific information in books and articles.

Print Reference Sources

Print reference books are available in the Luria Library Reference section, near the Reference Desk. Try one of the books below, or as a librarian to recommend the best book for your topic.

  • The Cambridge Guide to Theatre – R 792.03 C178c 1995
  • The Oxford Companion to American Theatre – R 792.0973 B729o 2004

Online Reference Sources

These resources are available online and will require you to login with your Pipeline account information when off-campus:

Finding Books

Use the library catalog to search for books in print and online!

Recommended Books

  • Benston, Kimberly W. Imamu Amiri Baraka (Leroi Jones): a collection of critical essays — 818.54 B224xB
  • Bloom, Steven F. Student companion to Eugene O’Neill — 812.52 O58xBlo 2007
  • Siddall, Stephan H. Literature insights Henrik Ibsen: “A doll’s house” — ebook

Finding Articles

Use library databases to find articles from periodicals (magazines, scholarly journals, and newspapers) about your playwright or work. To access these resources from off-campus, you will be required to login using your Pipeline account information.

Try using one or all of these databases to find literary criticism and theatrical reviews for your playwright and their work(s):

Recommended Periodicals

  • Eugene O’Neill Review. Recent issues (published since 2012) are available through Project MUSE. Older issues are available through JSTOR.

Evaluating Websites

This final paper requires you to only use “library sources.”

While you will only be able to write your paper using library sources, you can still use the web to become more familiar with your selected playwright or work. However, it is inevitable that you will come across information that is inaccurate and/or misleading.

Use the P.R.O.V.E.N. Source Evaluation Questions to help you determine whether the sources you find are credible:

  • Purpose: How and why the source was created. Is it intended to educate, inform, persuade, sell, or entertain? Do the authors, publishers, or sponsors state this purpose, or try to disguise it? Why was this information published in this particular type of source (book, article, website, blog, etc.)? Is the source designed for the general public, students, or experts?
  • Relevance: The value of the source for your needs. Does the type of source meet your assignment’s requirements? Does the information answer your question, support your argument, or add something to your knowledge of the topic? Is it too general or too specific? Is it too basic or too advanced?
  • Objectivity: The reasonableness and completeness of the information. Do the authors present the information thoroughly and professionally? Is it fact or opinion? Is it biased? Do the authors use strong, emotional, manipulative, or offensive language? Do they leave out, or make fun of, important facts or alternative perspectives?
  • Verifiability: The accuracy and truthfulness of the information. Do the authors support the information they present with strong factual evidence? Do they cite or provide links to other sources? What do experts say about the topic? Can you verify the information in other credible sources? Does the source contradict itself, include false statements, or misrepresent other sources?
  • Expertise: The authority of the creators of the source. What makes the authors, publishers, or sponsors of the source authorities on the topic? Do they have related education, experience, or other expertise? Do they provide an important alternative perspective? Has the source been reviewed in some way, such as by an editor or through peer review?
  • Newness: The age of the information. Is your topic in an area that requires current information (such as science, technology, or current events), or could information found in older sources still be useful? When was the information presented in the source first published or posted? Are newer sources available that would add important information to your understanding of the topic?

Recommended Websites

For more help locating reliable information online, see the Finding Credible Web Sources research guide.

Citation

For this paper you will be required to cite your sources using MLA style.

MLA Guidelines from the Purdue OWL

Detailed MLA Instructions from the Luria Library

Annotation

You will also be required to submit an annotated bibliography for this assignment.

Tips and Samples of MLA Annotations from Purdue Owl