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AFRICAN 201: Introduction to African Literature (Spring 2021) : Find Books and Literary Texts

Database for Literary Works

FInd Books

Use the Library Catalog to find books. Books often provide background and comprehensive information about a topic.  Books may have a single author or contain chapters by different authors and have an editor. 

Useful Subject Headings

The Library Catalog records include Subjects, or tags from an official list.  They describe the subject of the books or materials.  It can be helpful to use these words or phrases to search for books.  Some examples: 

African fiction 

African literature 

African literature (English) -- 20th Century 

African literature -- Women authors 

Feminism and literature -- Africa.

Postcolonialism in literature.

Women authors, African.

Women in literature.


Catalog records for literary texts, or anthologies/collections of texts, may have subjects such as:

African literature (English).

Translations into English.

Catalog records for literary texts, , or anthologies/collections of texts, may also have subjects indicating the genre such as: 



Oral tradition

Folk literature 


Catalog records for crtical sources analyzing literary works will have, along with African literature or genre or author name, subjects such as:

Criticism and Interpretation.

History and criticism.

Physical Books/Library by Appointment


If you are in Madison and wish to borrow physical library materials (the Libraries have many ebooks too), there are two options:

Pickup by Appointment

Request physical books in the Catalog and use Pickup by Appointment.

Currently, requests can be made for materials from a limited number of libraries.

In-Person Collection Access

Request an In-Person Collection Access appointment to visit the library and browse collections.

For current Library Covid-19 Information, please refer to the Library Covid-19 Dashboard.