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This guide provides links to resources available at the Waidner-Spahr Library and on the World Wide Web to support the Anthropology program at Dickinson College. Some resources are restricted to people currently affiliated with Dickinson. Because Anthropology research can cross over many academic disciplines (such as History, Sociology, or Biology) students are strongly encouraged to consult with a librarian for help with specific topics.

Liaison Librarian: Anna Kozlowska, 717-245-1849

Anthropology 240/Sociology 240: Fieldwork Research Guide

Global Eastern Africa Research Guide


General Sources for Anthropology

Reference Sources (dictionaries, encyclopedias, etc.)

Encyclopedia of Social and Cultural Anthropology Electronic encyclopedia.

Biographical Dictionary of Social and Cultural Anthropology Electronic dictionary.

International Encyclopedia of the Social Sciences Online reference (login may be required) This digital version of the nine-volume set provides an overview of a variety of social science topics, as well as a bibliography and cross-linking to related topics. It also provides biographical information on scholars in social science fields.

Dictionary of Concepts in Physical Anthropology REF GN50.3 .S74 1991

Books, Government Publications

Dickinson Library Catalog This online catalog includes all the books, films and government publications owned by the Dickinson College Library.

WorldCat (login may be required) This online catalog includes the books, films, government publications owned by libraries all over the world, including, but not limited to Dickinson College. WorldCat can help you identify books and other materials on a topic beyond what is available at Dickinson. Once identified, you can use the Dickinson Library's Borrow From Other Libraries service to obtain the books. Note: WorldCat is NOT for searching for individual journal articles. The U.S. government's official web portal. Useful for finding U.S. Federal Government websites and publications, including statistical information. Includes a search feature, an A-Z index of federal agencies, and links to state and local information sources.

Major Anthropology Journal Article Databases

Annual Reviews "Annual Reviews articles examine entire subfields in depth, they are written by experienced researchers upon invitation from one of our Editorial Committees." (publisher website) Select Anthropology from the main Annual Reviews page. Then search by keyword from the search feature on the left (make sure you select ‘This Series’). Reviews date back to the 1970’s. To search for articles older than this decade, be sure to select the proper date range.

Anthroplogy Plus This is the online version of "Anthropological Literature" from Harvard University and "Anthropological Index" from the UK's Royal Anthropological Institute. It covers international journals from the early 19th century to the present. In addition to journal articles, it includes citations for reports, commentaries, edited works and obituaries in the fields of social, cultural, physical, biological and linguistic anthropology, ethnology, archaeology, folklore, material culture and interdisciplinary studies.

AnthroSource This is a full-text database of the journals published by the American Anthropological Association.

Other Social Sciences/Science Databases which include Anthropology

These databases include the Anthropology literature, but also include large amounts of material from other disciplines. Because Anthropology topics are often interdisciplinary, these may be useful for your research.

Web of Knowledge / Web of Science Searches both social science and science scholarly literature, and allows the user to see what other articles have cited a chosen paper. You can limit a search to just the Anthropology literature. Provides access to Science Citation Index Expanded and Social Science Citation Index Expanded. Coverage Range: 1965-present

Sociological Abstracts Indexes the international literature in sociology and related disciplines in the social and behavioral sciences. Includes abstracts of books, book chapters, dissertations, and conference papers • Coverage Range: 1952 to present; Citations & abstracts. Advanced search tools include Thesaurus of Sociological Indexing Terms, an aid for picking search terms.

Additional Databases for Anthropology-related Literature


The Dickinson College Library has many film documentatries relevant to Anthropology in both DVD and VHS format. You can search for films or browse Anthropology films. Films can be difficult to find in our catalog without an exact title. For help finding film on a topic, please Ask a Librarian.

Specialized Websites

The American Anthropological Association maintains a list of links to Anthropology & Archaeology related websites.

Biological Anthropology

Related Research Guides


Cultural Anthropology

ehraf World Cultures

ehraf World Cultures is an online cross-cultural database that contains information on all aspects of cultural and social life. The annually-growing ehraf database is unique in that the information is organized by cultures and ethnic groups and the full-text sources are subject-indexed at the paragraph level.

Directory of Minorities and Indigenous Peoples

World Directory of Minorities and Indigenous Peoples produced by the non-governmental organization Minority Rights Group International: "Reflecting MRG’s own focus, the online directory is primarily concerned with the rights of national, ethnic, religious or linguistic minorities and indigenous peoples. Thus, the focus is on settled communities rather than new migrant communities, although it is difficult to draw a firm line between them, particularly in Western Europe, where we cover both national minorities and major immigrant communities." See additional details in the About the Directory section of the website.

Strategies for Finding Published Ethnographies

Ethnographies may be published as articles, books, or book chapters. They can be a challenge to find because they are not always explicitly labeled or tagged with the word 'ethnography'. Here are some strategies you can use to find published ethnographies.

In books: use the Dickinson Library Catalog and WorldCat (login may be required) and add the word "customs" to your search by the name of the ethnic group you are studying - "customs" is the word most commonly used to tag books that are reports of fieldwork. (You can also try adding the word "ethnography" or "ethnographic" to your search, but again, not all ethnographies are explicitly labeled as such.) Not all the books retrieved will be original reports of fieldwork; you will need to look at the description or even the book itself to make that determination.

Depending on what you are looking for, you may need to be more specific or search using additional keywords. For example, keywords such as "kinship" or "religion" or "ceremonies" or "funeral" might be useful. Especially when looking for book chapters or journal articles, more specific terms may be necessary.

Dissertations or theses may also be ethnographies. These are also listed in WorldCat.

The Library has copies of over 70 ethnographies that were published as part of the book series 'Case Studies in Cultural Anthropology'. Paste this series title in the "series" search box to view the individual titles. You may find additional titles from this series in WorldCat.

Look for a published bibliography on the ethnic group you are studying. The Library has many book-length annotated bibliographies, and others are listed in WorldCat. If you can find one on the people you are studying it may lead you to specific published ethnographies. Note: try searching both broadly and narrowly for bibliographies on a people. For example, look for bibliographies of "Indians of North America" in addition to searching by a specific tribal name, along with the keyword "bibliography".

For journal articles use the Anthropology databases listed above in this guide, and use the same keyword search strategies suggested for finding ethnographies books. Also consider looking in major databases related to the ethnic/geographic group (see "Related Guides", at the bottom of this guide)

Developing World

Encyclopedia of World Problems and Human Potential "...the result of an ambitious effort, since 1972, to collect and present information on the problems humanity is confronted with, as well as the challenges such problems pose to concept formation, values and development strategies." Produced by the Union of International Associations.

World Atlas of the Millennium Development Goals

USAID Development Experience Clearinghouse Reports on work sponsored by the United States Agency for International Development. "...over 67500 documents available for electronic download."

NGO Research Guide From Duke University. Note the guide's table-of-contents boxes on left and right that provide listings by subject, geography, etc. "Non-governmental organizations (NGOs) have become increasingly influential in world affairs. They often impact the social, economic and political activities of communities and the country as a whole. NGOs address a host of issues, Including, but not limited to, women’s rights, environmental protection, human rights, economic development, political rights, or health care."

Specialized databases for Development-related issues

Green FILE(login may be required) for environmental and agricultural issues.

Agricola (login may be required) For agriculture-related topics.

POPLINE for population-related topics. International database for finding journal articles. Emphasis is on reproductive health issues. Funded primarily by the U.S. Agency for International Development. NOTE: No "GetIt" button; search journal locator to see Dickinson College library has have the journals cited.

Related Disciplines Research Guides

Africana Studies Research Guide

Archaeology Research Guide

East Asian Studies Research Guide

Middle East Studies

Health Studies Cultural/Societal/Psychological Aspects

Latin American Studies

Women's & Gender Studies Research Guide

AAA Citation Style