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Researching African Literature and Film  

How to find African literature, film, and literary & film criticism
Last Updated: Feb 7, 2012 URL: Print Guide RSS UpdatesEmail Alerts

African Literature and Film Print Page


The University of Iowa Libraries homepage is your gateway to library resources including the InfoHawk Catalog, journal article databases, electronic journals and books, reference materials, and many more web-based resources.

To access peer-reviewed journal literature, do keyword searches in the disciplinary databases listed under the Scholarly Literature tab. These resources are especially appropriate for more focused searches, for which you will need for flexible and finely-grained parameters.

Google Scholar provides a less focused, but simple way to broadly search for scholarly literature. From one place, you can search across many disciplines and sources: peer-reviewed papers, theses, books, abstracts and articles, from academic publishers, professional societies, preprint repositories, universities and other scholarly organizations. Click on the "UIowa InfoLink:FullText" link next to each citation in your results list for InfoLink services including full text (when available), links to the InfoHawk Catalog, Interlibrary Loan requests and more.

To access online texts in African literature or information on African films, consult resources below.

Note: Physically browsing in either Reference or the Main Stacks, such as in the PL8000s (African literature) is another great search strategy. To see other call number ranges relevant to African Studies, see the Library of Congress Classification Outline.

African Literature (Online)

  • African Writers Series  Icon
    The publication of this historic collection in online form restores access to a substantial body of literature, much of which is out of print and only accessible in specialist research libraries, opening up new possibilities for scholarship and teaching in the fields of African and literary studies.
  • Black Drama - 1850 to present  Icon
    Currently contains approximately 1200 plays by 201 playwrights, together with detailed, fielded information on related productions, theaters, production companies, and more. The database also includes selected playbills, production photographs and other ephemera related to the plays. Many works are rare, hard-to-find, or out of print.

African Film (Catalogs)

  • California Newsreel -- Library of African Cinema
    California Newsreel is the most important distributor of African film and documentary. The Main Library owns all of their titles, which can be located in the InfoHawk Catalog and checked out from Media Services.

Bibliographer for African, Middle Eastern, and South Asian Studies


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