Black Studies Research Guide

Questions about this guide? Contact
Try these databases first to find journal articles in this discipline.
  • Africa Knowledge Project (1999-Present)
    Africa Knowledge Project, known as AKP, promotes Critical African Studies. It disseminates Africa-centered, evidence-based knowledge on Africa and African Diaspora.
  • African Writers Series
    Complete texts of the Heinemann's African Writers Series.
  • America, History & Life (1964 to present)
    Covers the world's scholarly literature on the history and culture of the United States and Canada.
  • Black Studies Center (25,000 BC to present)
    Black Studies Center is a tool that supports research, teaching, and learning in Black Studies covering aspects of the black experience such as history, literature, political science, sociology, philosophy, and religion.
  • Historical Abstracts with Full Text (1955 to present)
    Scholarly literature about world history since 1450 (excluding the United States and Canada).
  • JSTOR
    Full-text backfiles of over two thousand leading academic journals across the humanities, social sciences, and sciences. (Alumni access)
  • MLA International Bibliography (1926 to present)
    Covers critical scholarship on literature, language, linguistics, and folklore.
  • PAIS Index (1972 to present)
    Coverage of articles, selected books, government documents, research reports, etc., from a wide range of social sciences.
  • Project Muse
    Online database of more than 200 journals from nonprofit publishers. (Alumni access)

For more databases, use the subject filter on A-Z Databases

Use these encyclopedias and reference works to get started on a topic.
Also see the Primary Sources research guide.
  • African American Newspapers (Readex) (1827-1998)
    Provides access to approximately 270 U.S. newspapers from more than 35 states and chronicles a century and a half of the African American experience.
  • African American Newspapers (Accessible Archives) (1827-1902)
    Starting with Freedom's Journal in 1827, the database will eventually contain all major African-American newspapers published in the U.S. during the 19th century.
  • Aluka
    Digital resources and data in three major content areas: African Cultural Heritage Sites and Landscapes, The African Plants Initiative and Struggles for Freedom in Southern Africa.
  • American Slavery Collection (1820-1922)
    This digital edition of the American Antiquarian Society's holdings of slavery and abolition materials delivers more than 3,500 works published over the course of more than 100 years.
  • Amherst College Digital Collections
    Digitized art works, photographs, manuscripts, books, and other media from Amherst College Archives & Special Collections and the library’s Art & Architecture Collection.
  • ArchiveGrid
    Primary-source collection descriptions from WorldCat records and archival finding aids.
  • Caribbean Newspapers (1718-1876)
    Fully searchable digitized collection of 18th- and 19th-century Caribbean newspapers, including 66 titles from 22 islands
  • Slavery, Abolition and Social Justice (1490-2007)
    Thousands of pamphlets, books, paintings, maps and images documenting the varieties and legacy of slavery, the social justice perspective, and the continued existence of slavery today.
Use these collections of historical and current newspapers (also see the Primary Sources tab or search the journal locator for specific titles).
  • Access World News (Newsbank) (date coverage varies)
    Electronic editions of over 2,600 local, regional, and national U.S. newspapers as well as 1,500 international sources. Fully searchable and browsable by map.
  • AllAfrica
    Content from newspapers, news agencies and publications from the African continent.
  • Alternative Press Index (1969 to present)
    Covers alternative, radical and left periodicals, newspapers and magazines.
  • Alt-PressWatch (1970 to present)
    Full-text newspapers, magazines, and journals of the alternative and independent press.
  • Ethnic NewsWatch (1959 to present)
    News and analysis from ethnic popular and scholarly publications.
  • Global Newsstream (ProQuest)
    Search the most recent global news, including major US dailies, with archives that stretch back into the 1980s from over 2,700 news sources that include newspapers, newswires, television and radio transcripts, blogs, and more in full-text format.
  • iPOLL
    Database contains survey questions and answers asked in the US over the last 70+ years by more than 150 survey organizations. Create a personal registration for access to full features.
  • Social Explorer (1790 to present)
    Access to data from the U.S. Census, American Community Survey, religious congregations, and other sources, with options to create thematic and interactive maps and reports.
  • Historical Statistics of the United States
    Standard source for quantitative information about the U.S., updated and includes 37,000 data series.
  • American Music
    Nearly 7,000 albums of music from America's past, including civil rights, political campaigns, Prohibition, wars, and more.
  • Kanopy Streaming Video
    Kanopy offers a broad selection of thousands of streaming films, documentaries, and theatrical releases covering a wide variety of subject areas, with additional new releases launched monthly. If close-captioning is not included, it can be requested. Interactive transcripts are included. Note that US feature films are not typically part of the Kanopy offerings.
  • Naxos Music Library Jazz
    One of the most comprehensive collections of Jazz music available online.
Start with these recommended freely available resources in this discipline.

Black Studies Resources in Archives & Special Collections
Resource guide for materials related to Black Studies and the black experience at Amherst college in Amherst College's Archives and Special Collections.

Digital Harlem 1915-1930 
Award-winning historical research project using mapping layers and public records to illustrate everyday life for African-American New Yorkers

Digital Schomburg 
Online exhibits, books, images, and other resources from the NYPL's Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture

Who Speaks for the Negro?: An Archival Collection
Digital archive of the original reel-to-reel recordings that Warren compiled for each of his interviewees, as well as print materials related to the book of the same name, published in 1965.

    Women and the Egyptian revolution : engagement and activism during the 2011 Arab uprisings (Allam, Nermin, author.) Frost Library; DT107.87 .A45 2018

    A history of African popular culture (Barber, Karin, 1949-, author.) Frost Library; DT14 .B355 2018

    A line in the river : Khartoum, city of memory (Mahjoub, Jamal, 1960-, author.) Frost Library; DT157.3 .M34 2018

    New histories of South Africa's apartheid-era bantustans Frost Library; DT1760 .N49 2017

    Sitting pretty : white Afrikaans women in postapartheid South Africa (Van der Westhuizen, Christi, author.) Frost Library; DT1768.A57 V355 2018

    To swim with crocodiles : land, violence, and belonging in South Africa, 1800-1996 (Kelly, Jill E., author.) Frost Library; DT2270 .K45 2018

    Religion as resistance : negotiating authority in Italian Libya (Ryan, Eileen, 1978-, author.) Frost Library; DT235 .R93 2018

    Africa in the colonial ages of empire (Mentan, Tatah, 1948-, author.) Frost Library; DT31 .M46 2018

    Empire of sentiment : the death of Livingstone and the myth of Victorian imperialism (Lewis, Joanna, 1968-, author.) Frost Library; DT32.5 .L48 2018

    Alienation and freedom (Fanon, Frantz, 1925-1961, author.) Frost Library; DT33 .F31613 2018

    An American quilt : unfolding a story of family and slavery (May, Rachel (Rachel Suzanne) author.) Frost Library; E441 .M433 2018

    The road to dawn : Josiah Henson and the story that sparked the Civil War (Brock, Jared, author.) Frost Library; E444.H526 B76 2018

    Slavery in the Connecticut Valley of Massachusetts (Romer, Robert H.) Frost Library; E445.M4 R65 2009

    The trouble with Minna : a case of slavery and emancipation in the antebellum North (Hartog, Hendrik, 1948-, author.) Frost Library; E445.N54 H37 2018

    Making a slave state : political development in early South Carolina (Quintana, Ryan A. (Ryan Alexander) author.) Frost Library; E445.S7 Q85 2018

    The Frederick Douglass papers. Series three, Correspondence (Douglass, Frederick, 1818-1895.) Frost Library; E449.D75 A4 2009

    Frederick Douglass, a psychobiography (Gibson, Danjuma G., author.) Frost Library; E449.D75 G53 2018

    A political companion to Frederick Douglass Frost Library; E449.D75 P65 2018

    The captive's quest for freedom (Blackett, R. J. M., 1943-, author.) Frost Library; E450 .B589 2018

    Syncing the Americas : José Martí and the shaping of national identity Frost Library; F1783.M38 S95 2018

    Heroes, martyrs, and political messiahs in revolutionary Cuba, 1946-1958 (Guerra, Lillian, author.) Frost Library; F1787.5 .G84 2018

    La democracia republicana en Cuba, 1940-1952 : actores, reglas y estrategias electorales (Rodríguez Arechavaleta, Carlos Manuel, author.) Frost Library; F1787.5 .R624 2017

    Cuban revolution in America : Havana and the making of a United States Left, 1968-1992 (Latner, Teishan, author.) Frost Library; F1788 .L3393 2018

    Most of 14th Street is gone : the Washington, DC riots of 1968 (Walker, J. Samuel, author.) Frost Library; F200 .W235 2018

    Race relations in the U.S. Virgin Islands : St. Thomas, a centennial retrospective (Krigger, Marilyn F., author.) Frost Library; F2105 .K78 2017

    Deep roots : how slavery still shapes Southern politics (Acharya, Avidit, author.) Frost Library; F216.2 .A243 2018

    No limits to their sway (Pérez Morales, Edgardo, author.) Frost Library; F2161 .P464 2018

    Practices of resistance in the Caribbean : narratives, aesthetics, politics Frost Library; F2169 .P73 2018

    Caribbean masala : Indian identity in Guyana and Trinidad (Ramsaran, Dave, author.) Frost Library; F2191.E27 R37 2018

    The rise of the African novel : politics of language, identity, and ownership (Mũkoma wa Ngũgĩ, author.) Frost Library; PL8010.6 .M85 2018

    African futures : thinking about the future through word and image Frost Library; PL8011 .A475 2016

    Sōseki : modern Japan's greatest novelist (Nathan, John, 1940-, author.) Frost Library; PL812.A8 Z82548 2018

    Otuzo twOvaherero (Hangara, Ngungaa, author.) Frost Library; PL8241.7 .H36 2017

    The poems of Nakahara Chūya (Nakahara, Chūya.) Frost Library; PL834.A515 A25 1993

    From Trinity to Trinity (Hayashi, Kyōko, 1930-2017.) Frost Library; PL852.A82784 Z4613 2010

    Norwegian wood (Murakami, Haruki, 1949-) Frost Library; PL856.U673 N6713 2000

    The emissary (Tawada, Yōko, 1960- author.) Frost Library; PL862.A85 K4613 2018

    The bear and the paving stone (Horie, Toshiyuki, 1964-, author.) Frost Library; PL871.O75 K8613 2018