Biographical Information Sources
Native American Writers of the United States (Gale)
Reference Collection: PN 451 .D52 v.175
Contains 7-15 page biographical articles on 43 Native American authors. Provides a list of each authors writings since this source was published (1997) as well as a list of references at the end of each article. This publication makes a good source for identifying an author and potential works to read.
Contemporary Authors (Gale)
Reference Collection: PN 771 .C65
Contains short biographical essays on thousands of writers in this 200 volume (and growing) set. Also gives a comprehensive listing of writings as well as a bibliography of biographical and critical sources for each author. Use the Literary Index or the paper index found in the reference collection to locate an author in this set.
The Oxford Companion to Canadian Literature
Covers fiction, prose, poetry, drama, prominent writers, literary magazines, publishers, and more general topics. Two general articles, Native and Metis Literature and Aboriginal Legends and Tales, provide broad overviews, links to individual authors, and a bibliography.
When searching for biographical information in the library catalog, be sure to search from the title/author/subject search screen. Also, enter the authors last name first (ex. Erdrich, Louise) and select the Library of Congress Subject Heading button before searching.
Biography Reference Bank (1984-present)
Indexes Collection: AP 2 .B5 (1946-1983)
An index to biographical information found in over 2,700 periodicals and 1,800 books. Use the printed indexes for information published before 1984.
Native American Authors
Find biographical information and links to online resources including interviews, online texts, and other commentary. An excellent site from the folks at the Internet Public Library.
Biography and Genealogy Master Index
An index to more than 13 million biographical sketches found in hundreds of standard reference books. After locating an entry you will need to search the library catalog to determine if we have the particular reference book.
Historical and Cultural Information Sources
Handbook of North American Indians
Reference Collection: E 76.2 .H36
Published by the Smithsonian Institution, this multivolume set provides scholarly articles addressing the cultural aspects of numerous native tribes.
Encyclopedia of North American Indians
Also available in the Reference Collection: E 76.2 .E53
A Concise Dictionary of Indian Tribes of North America
Reference Collection: E. 76.2 .L44
Handbook of the Indians of Canada
Reference Collection: E 78 .C2 H6
Search the library catalog by individual tribe names (algonquian indians, etc.), events (red river rebellion), or various topics (indians of north america AND government relations AND canada). The Library of Congress uses Indians of North America as the subject heading for all topics related to native americans. You call also browse the book collection on the third floor of the library under the call number E 99 (Indian tribes and cultures).
Literary Criticism Information Sources
Contemporary Literary Criticism (Gale)
Reference Collection: PN 771 .C5
This multivolume set provides excerpts from articles found in a variety of literary criticism sources. Use the Literary Index or the paper index found in the reference collection to locate an author/work in this set.
Twentieth Century Literary Criticism (Gale)
Reference Collection: PN 94 .G35
This multivolume set also provides excerpts from articles found in a variety of literary criticism sources. Use the Literary Index or the paper index found in the reference collection to locate an author/work in this set.
Native North American Literature (Gale)
Reference Collection: PS 508 .I5 N38
70 Native American authors are covered by this source. Provides a brief biography, list of works (since 1994), excerpts of various criticisms, and a short list of additional sources for further study. Another good source for selecting an author and particular works to read.
MLA International Bibliography (1926-present)
The premier index to scholarly publications in the field of literature.
Search the library catalog from the title/author/subject search screen. Select the Library of Congress Subject Heading search button and enter the authors last name first (ex. Erdrich, Louise). Look for the subheading Criticism and Interpretation or titles of individual works (Erdrich, Louise --Love Medicine)
Twentieth-Century Short Story Explication
Reference Collection, PN 3373 .W35
Index to essays and journal articles. There is no cumulative index so you must look for your author in each of the 10 volumes of this set.
Online Literary Criticism
Another site offered by the Internet Public Library that provides links to critical and biographical sites about individual authors.
First Nations Periodical Index
This site indexes 20 journals containing mainly Canadian Native content.
Canadian Journal of Native Studies
This freely available journal covers all aspects of Canadian Native studies including literature. Use the First Nations Periodical Index to search for articles in this journal.
Book Review Index (1965-2003)
Indexes Collection: Z 1035 .A1 B6
Another source of potential book reviews.
MLA Style Guide
Reference Collection: LB 2369 .G53.
Examples of how to cite some of the more common sources, including web sites and online articles, according to the most recent edition of the MLA Handbook for Writers of Research Papers. Consult the Handbook in the library reference collection for sources not listed at this site.
Borrowing Materials From Other Libraries
Interlibrary Loan allows you to obtain materials not owned by the Olson Library. Materials such as books and periodical articles, among other sources, can be borrowed from other libraries. The average time to receive requested materials is 1-2 weeks and you will be notified by email when your items arrive. Consult the above link to submit a request and for further details.
Need Further Assistance?
You can contact the Reference Desk through the live chat service or by phone at 227-2294.
You can also contact Mike Burgmeier by email or by phone at 227-2187.