African Civilization Resources

African Civilization Resources

Printed Reference Sources

There are many specialized encyclopedias, indexes, and other reference sources with information about African history. These sources cannot be checked out. They are located in the Reference area on the 1st floor of the Rivera Library.

Here is a sampling:

African Recorder (1989- ) Ref DT1 .A45
Encyclopedia of Precolonial Africa: Archaeology, History, Languages, Cultures, and Environments Ref DT2 .E53 1997
Encyclopedia of African History and Culture Ref DT3 .P27 2001

African Studies Companion: A Resource Guide & Directory
Ref DT19.8 .Z45 1997
Chronology of World Slavery Ref HT861 .R63 1999

Historical Guide to World Slavery
Ref HT861 .H59 1998
Macmillan Encyclopedia of World Slavery Ref HT861 .M24 1998
Africana: The Encyclopedia of the African and African-American Experience Ref DT14 .A37435
Encyclopedia of Africa South of the Sahara Ref DT351 .E53 1997

Dictionary of African Biography
Ref DT18 .D55
Africa Contemporary Record DT1.A324 (most recent in reference, others in stacks) 
International African Bibliography (1972-      ) Ref Z3501 .A116
Reference Guide to Africa Ref Z3501 .K15 1999
Current Bibliography on African Affairs (1968-1993) Ref Z3503 .C8

Africa South of the Sahara: Index to Periodical Literature 1900-1970
Ref Z3503 .U45
Guide to African American and African Primary Sources at Harvard University Ref Z3509 .B87 2000
The Muslim Almanac Ref BP40 .M83 1996
Oxford Encyclopedia of the Modern Islamic World   Ref DS35.53 O95 1995

To find BOOKS at UCR, use SCOTTY:

Search by keyword for materials on a particular topic.
To retrieve variations of a word, use *   
Example:  slave*  will retrieve slaves, slavery, and slaveholding 
Narrow your search by using subject headingsand/OR by limiting by year, language, books only.   

Remember, a "subject" search must use official "subject headings".  Here are some examples:
  • Chaka, Zulu Chief
  • Christianity--South Africa--20th Century
  • Congo (Brazzaville)--Politics and Government
  • Deforestation--government policy--Africa
  • Deforestation--Zimbabwe
  • Islam and State--Fulah Empire--History
  • Islam and State--Fulani Empire--History
  • Islam--Africa, west
  • Islam--Africa--History
  • Lumumba, Patrice
  • Peanut industry--Africa
  • Slavery in the Sudan
  • Slavery--Sudan--history--sources
  • Usuman dan Fodio
  • Women--Africa--Social Conditions
  • Zulu (African people)--Kings and Rulers

Use the California Digital Library's MELVYL Catalog to locate books at other UC campus libraries
To find SCHOLARLY JOURNAL and MAGAZINE articles, use a periodical index / database:
Start with:  Academic Search Complete -- a great place to begin!
Indexes popular magazine and scholarly journal articles, news magazines, and newspapers. Includes some full-text.

Then try:  Historical Abstracts  and  
Arts & Humanities Citation Index - indexes scholarly journals from 1975 - present.     

Search for information in one or more of the specialized databases, depending upon your topic:  

Political Science focus, check:  PAIS (Public Affairs Information Service)
Relating to women, check our Databases by Subject Page: Ethnic & Women/Gender Studies

  • Be flexible in your terminology; think of synonyms and related terms to describe your topic.
  • Check the bibliographies of sources you have to find more sources.
  • Limit to English language.
  • Use a variety of sources.
  • Be as specific as possible.
To find relevant Websites:
Begin your Web surfing from some good "mega-sites" such as:

the University of Pennsylvania African Studies Center:

the African Studies Association:  "Africa South of the Sahara":

and for primary sources: 

the History Department at Tennessee Technological University: 
"African History and Studies":

The HistoryNet and  "African History": 

. . .   or   . . . 
do a SPECIFIC search in an Internet search engine (Google, HotBot, Northern Light, etc.)

For more research help, including guides for citing sources, check out the Research Help page.  One final note, Reference Librarians  are here to help you.   PLEASE ask us for assistance if you get stuck or confused at any point in the research process!

Last modified: 12/15/2014 6:52 PM by J. Mason

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