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What are secondary sources?
In the context of your assignment, secondary sources are ones you might consult for background information about your time period or the country you're studying. You might also look at secondary sources to read a scholar's take on a topic. Basically, it's any kind of source that isn't one of your primary source documents. I've listed a number of places that might help you find additional information about your topic.
I recommend starting with resources listed in the "Information about Countries" and "Information about Historical Context." The catalog search box at the very bottom lets you search all of our library books. You might also look for articles in any of the recommended databases.
This list can be overwhelming - and it's not even comprehensive. If you need any help, just let me know!
Recommended Reference Works
Reference books are an excellent resource to use during your research. They provide overviews of topics, including countries you may be investigating, as well as statistic, demographic, governmental and any other kind of country data you're looking for. Reference books are shelved on the main floor of the library.
Constitutions of Countries of the World - Ref K 3157 .B58
Provides texts (with English translations when necessary) of constitutions of the world's nations. Each is accompanied by a chronology of events and a brief commentary.
Europa Regional Surveys of the World
This excellent series provides detailed information on countries, including history, economy, and government, as well as statistical data and a comprehensive directory of political and cultural organizations. Books in this series are shelved throughout the Reference section. Search "regional surveys of the world" in the library catalog to find the book for your country.
Statistical Abstract of the World - Ref HA 154 .S83
Presents data on over 180 countries, covering geography, demographics, education, science and technology, government and law, and economics. Sources for all data are noted, and an appendix lists and describes sources, offering important leads to additional data.
Vital Signs: The Trends that are Shaping our Future - HC 10 .V53 (most recent volume in Reference)
A compilation of statistics and analysis of major trends in food production, energy, atmosphere, the economy, the military, and social factors such as population growth, epidemics, and refugees. Sponsored by the Worldwatch Institute.
World Economic Outlook - Ref HC 10 .W7979
Issued by the International Monetary Fund, this periodic publication provides information about current economic situations around the world. Most recent is in Reference; older editions are in the General Collection.
World Economic and Social Survey - Ref. HC 59 .A169
This report, issued periodically by the United Nations looks at international development from an economic viewpoint. Most recent report is in Reference; earlier reports are in the General Collection.
World Economic Situations and Prospects - Ref HC 59 .A1692
Issued periodically by the United Nations, this report presents an overview, along with detailed statistical information, about the current state of the world-wide economy. Most recent is in Reference; earlier reports are in the General Collection.
World Encyclopedia of Parliaments and Legislatures - Ref JF 511 .W67 1998
Covers parliamentary forms of government in over 190 countries in lengthy profiles that cover the nations' history, structure and procedure of parliamentary governance, relationship to the executive branch, parliamentary ethics and culture, and relevant constitutional issues.
World Encyclopedia of Peace - Ref JZ 5533 .W67 1999
A comprehensive work on topics in peace studies, with in-depth articles on concepts, events, and theories.
World Resources Institute
Offers many digital publications on environmental issues from a global perspective. Includes EarthTrends
, a comprehensive online database that focuses on the environmental, social, and economic trends. Includes country profiles.
Information about Historical Context
Encyclopedia of World War II: A Political, Social, and Military History - Ref D 740 .E516 2005 (5 vols.)
These two specialized encyclopedias offer articles on a variety of topics related to the two world wars.
Cambridge History of the Cold War - REF D842 .C295 2010
The three-volume series, written by leading international experts in the field, elucidates how the Cold War evolved from the geopolitical, ideological, economic, and socio-political environment of the two World Wars and the interwar era, and explains the global dynamics of the Cold War international system.
Cold War, 1945-1991 - Ref D 839.5 .C65 1992
An encyclopedia focusing on people who played a role in the cold war. Includes major events, concepts, and themes in the third volume.
Recommended Article Databases
Academic Search Premier
A good place to start research on most any subject. This multi-disciplinary database indexes nearly 8,050 publications and provides full text for nearly 4,600, including more than 3,900 peer-reviewed journals. Access is provided by eLibraryMN (ELM).
CIAO (International affairs)
Contains full text documents on international politics and related fields. Includes content from government research organizations, independent think tanks, university analysis centers, and scholarly journals. Also includes country surveys with political data, economic data, and maps from The Economist Intelligence Unit.
Public Affairs Index
Covers global contemporary public policy issues, ranging from public health, the environment, housing, human and civil rights, to international conflict and natural disasters. Draws on scholarly publications, conference papers, government documents and reference works.
Indexes over 500 scholarly journals published by SAGE in a range of disciplines, including many social sciences titles. Includes current full text for over 30 journals and back issues for hundreds of journals. Many journals include full backfiles - back to 1960s or earlier. To search articles by discipline, click "Browse" > "Journals by discipline."
Web of Science (Web of Knowledge)
Science Citation Index Expanded, Social Sciences Citation Index, and Arts & Humanities Citation Index of the Institute for Scientific Information (ISI). Besides indexing a wide range of journals in the sciences, social sciences, and history, this resource allows you to search for articles that cite a specific author or published work. Coverage from 1997 to the present. Click on the "Web of Science" tab to limit your search to one or more specific citation databases.
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