Back to School Resources | The Artemis Literary Database

By Violet L. RSS Wed, August 29, 2018

Who remembers having to visit the library and look up magazine articles in the long, long row of green hardbound Reader’s Guide to Periodical Literature? No disrespect against the Reader’s Guide—it’s still a great resource and we’ve still got it in the reference stacks at many of our branches—but if you’re at home sweating over a term paper and the library is closed, what do you do?

We’ve got an even more powerful resource that’s available 24/7—it’s called Artemis, and it’s a search engine that’s available from the Free Library's Database resources. Just click the Database link under the main search box in the upper left-hand corner on our homepage and find "Artemis" in the alphabetical databases list. Artemis Literary Sources is a service that scours eight massive databases of literary criticism and citations all at once, based on whatever search terms you enter.

For example, say you’re writing a paper about that sophmore English favorite, The Scarlet Letter:

1,784 hits of literary criticism, plus links to biographies, overviews, reviews, news, multimedia, and more!

That’s enough primary and secondary sources for a doctoral thesis!

I don’t know about you, but this is the one I’m most eager to read:

And these databases aren’t just confined to Western authors. Here’s what Artemis pulled up for the Japanese novelist Banana Yoshimoto:

Oh, and look, in the sidebar there’s links for Haruki Murakami too, since he was mentioned in some articles with her. Click on his name and you’ve got results for a whole new search.

You can even search for criticism in six languages, including French, Spanish, and Turkish. And don’t think Artemis is only for criticism about literary fiction – its databases also cover poetry, film, theater, opera, and more.

Now here’s the part that’s really accommodating for people who are visual learners or if you’re stuck on finding a fresh direction for your paper: you can search the database visually with the Topic Finder.

Check out this cute little rainbow blot depicting what it’s found related to the search term "television":

Click on one of the multi-colored sections and you can go even more specific:

Or, with the Term Frequency search option,

you can see how popular a topic is over a range of dates:

There’s so many more ways Artemis can uncover a great resource for your next term paper. So give it a try, and if you find a particularly useful hack for this powerful database, drop it in the comments below!

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