Journals, articles and databases

  • Additional Library resources available during the COVID-19 pandemic

    In addition to the e-content provided through the Library web site, many academic publishers are making additional e-resources available. Check this list  Library resources during COVID-19 pandemic for details. The list is being updated as more resources become available, so do check back regularly.


  • Key resources for English Literature, Drama and Creative Writing

    LibrarySearch » is a a good place to start searching for journal articles on a topic. Just type keywords or a phrase in the search box. At the results screen, use the filter options on the left to limit your search to articles.
    Note that LibrarySearch doesn’t cover all of our e-resources. We recommend using a database for more in-depth research. Databases can help you to trace journal articles and other publications on topics, authors and literary works.

    • JSTOR » is an archive of full-text articles from a range of academic journals with good coverage of literary journals and also includes some e-books. It includes these useful research tools:                                       
      Highly recommended for anyone studying Shakespeare is JSTOR's Understanding Shakespeare tool that lets you look up quotations from a Shakespeare play and find JSTOR articles that reference them. 
      Try the Text Analyser tool (BETA) available on the database home page. You can upload an article and the tool will find similar content in the database.  
    • MLA International Bibliography »  database covering international literary and language studies. Can help you find books, book chapters and articles.
      Academic Search Complete » A multi-disciplinary database with good coverage of English Studies journals. Much of the content is full-text.
      Tip: These two databases are on the same web platform (EBSCO) so you can search both together. Connect to either database, then select 'Choose databases' (above the search boxes) and tick the box next to the database(s) you want to include.
    • Performing Arts Periodicals Database » Mainly full-text database covering performing arts including theatre and film. Good for articles on plays in performance

    Further help

    Finding journal articles guide (PDF) » Includes tips on how to search databases effectively.

    Literature search plan (Word) » Designed to help you plan your search - download a copy and add your own notes.

    You are welcome to contact your Academic Liaison Librarian for 1-to-1 help.

  • Other useful databases for English Literature 

  • Box of Broadcasts (BoB) gives you access to thousands of recorded radio and TV programmes including films from an online archive. You can also record programmes, create clips and playlists. Log in when prompted with your Brookes username and password. First-time users have to register. You can search for programmes or look for playlists and create your own.

    Digital image databases:

    • ARTstor - over a million images from collections world-wide.
    • Bridgeman Education - a digital image library which includes paintings, drawings and photographs. Very useful for photos of theatre productions: you can search for specific play, theatre, theatre company or person.

    Books from 1450-1900

    • Historical Texts has the full text of over 350,000 books published in Great Britain from 1475-1900. It consists of 3 databases which can be searched individually or together:
      • Early English books online (EEBO) Contains digital facsimile page images of virtually every work printed in England, Ireland, Scotland, Wales and British North America and works in English printed elsewhere from 1473-1700. Full text.
      • Eighteenth century collections online (EECO) Contains digital images of 150,000 books published during the 18th Century. Full text.
      • British Library 19th Century collection Gives full-text access to over 65,000 19th Century books, covering philosophy, history, poetry and literature.
    • Early European Books - digitised collection of works printed in Europe between 1450 and 1700.

    Periodicals from the 19th Century

    • British Periodicals provides access to the searchable full text of hundreds of periodicals from the late seventeenth century to the early twentieth. Among the periodicals included are titles founded, edited or regularly contributed to, by a host of important figures - Mary Elizabeth Braddon, Charles Dickens, George Eliot, Henry Fielding, Ford Madox Ford, Oliver Goldsmith, Leigh Hunt, Samuel Johnson and Margaret Oliphant to name but a few. The database gives access to the original periodical versions of many landmark texts like De Quincey's Confessions of an English Opium-Eater and Gaskell's North and South.
    • Nineteenth century UK periodicals online (via Gale Databases) contains digital editions of some 100 UK periodicals published between 1800 and 1900. Coverage ranges from Boy's Own to the British Women's Temperance Journal, and from Punch to the Racing Times.

    Current news sources:

    • LexisLibrary is a law database which includes articles from UK national and regional news sources.
      How to use LexisLibrary - see the section 'How to search newspapers'
    • Factiva is an international news database. It covers national newspapers, local newspapers and magazines.
      How to use Factiva - short videos and written guides.

    Historical news sources:

    • The Guardian and The Observer 1791 - 2003 (via ProQuest). The complete digital edition of the Guardian (1821 - 2003) and the Observer (1791 - 2003) with all articles, advertisements and illustrations. Use the 'Publications' option to browse the different versions of these newspapers published over the years.
    • Times Digital Archive 1785-2007 (via Gale Databases). The complete digital edition of The Times (London), with all articles, advertisements and illustrations.
    • Seventeenth & Eighteenth century Burney newspapers collection (via Gale Databases) a digital archive of 17th and 18th newspapers, pamphlets, proclamations and newsbooks published in England, Ireland and Scotland, plus a selection of papers from British colonies in the Americas and Asia. Use the 'Browse' option to view which titles are included.
    • British Library newspapers (1800-1900) (via Gale Databases) - this collection covers contains digital editions of over 60 national and regional British newspapers from the 19th century. Use the 'Browse' option to view which titles are included. Note we have access to the collections 'British Library Newspapers, Part I: 1800-1900' and 'British Library Newspapers, Part II: 1800-1900'. 
    • NewsVault (via Gale Databases) allows you to cross-search all of the Gale historical collections we subscribe to. This covers: Seventeenth & Eighteenth century Burney newspapers collection; British Library newspapers (1800-1900); Times Digital Archive 1785-2007; 19th Century UK Periodicals.

    • Oxford Dictionary of National Biography - an illustrated collection of articles providing the life stories of over 50,000 people who have shaped the history of the British Isles and beyond, from the earliest to modern times. Includes novelists, poets and playwrights.
    • Oxford Reference Online - a collection of Oxford University Press reference books on a variety of subjects including Literature. Titles covered include The Oxford Companion to English Literature; The Concise Oxford Dictionary of Literary Terms; A Dictionary of Writers and their Works and many others.
    • OED online version of the Oxford English Dictionary.
    • Arts and Humanities Citation index available via Web of science- subject coverage: art and humanities.
    • Communication & mass media complete - provides full text links to more than 200 journals and indexes many more. Covers linguistics.
    • One-stop search for key Education databases - worth searching if you are looking for articles on children's literature.
    • Historical abstracts - major history database.
    • Periodicals archive online - an archive of 80 scholarly journals published between 1891 and 2000. The collection covers the arts, humanities, and social science disciplines.
    • ZETOC - the British Library's electronic table of contents. Covers about 20,000 current journals and conference proceedings in a diverse range of subjects, including the humanities. You can also join the ZETOC Alert service to receive details of when journal details in your subject area are added to the database.

    English Literature students and those doing Creative Writing may also be interested in looking at our list of Databases for Publishing