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UCOR 101: Thinking & Writing Across the Curriculum (Dr. Speese): Tips

This page will help students find Western primary sources giving Western views on Africans, and African primary sources in which Africans express their own views of themselves

Search Tips


Searching for sourcess on African subjects in databases  can be complex, because there are a number of levels at which you can search. You can search at the:

  • Continental level (the pre-set searches in the Find Books boxes are mainly a healthy selection of these)
  • Regional level (East Africa, West Africa, North Africa, Southern Africa, Sub-Saharan Africa)
  • Country level (Nigeria, etc.)
  • Tribal/Ethnic/People group level (Yoruba, Igbo, etc.)

If you search at the continental level, the sources you find will have a tendency to talk about Africa at the that level, giving broad coverage of topics, but will not necessarily deal with the subjects in specific parts of the continent, in specific countries, or amongst specific people groups.

So you will probably need to search at the lower, more-specific levels as well. Here are examples of some possible searches:

East Africa AND economics

Nigeria AND government

Yoruba AND sex roles