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A Beginner's LibGuide to Film Studies

This is a subject guide for general resources for the Film and Media Arts program.


On this page you'll find info on databases, a film and media studies-specific database list, and a general database list. All are accessible through the libraries homepage and through a DePauw account.

What's a database?

Databases are research tools that help you find articles in journals, magazines, or newspapers, or other information sources. 

Some focus on a particular kind of source (like newspaper articles), but most of ours focus on scholarly research in a specific academic field. 

Utilizing databases occurs most frequently in the research stage of your work, and they might be confusing to you if you don't have much experience navigating them on your own. Meet with a librarian to have them help you learn how!

Film and Media Studies Databases

Art Full Text

Why search here? You're looking for peer-reviewed art resources.

What's included? Peer-reviewed articles (or article summaries) from scholarly journals and magazines covering fine, decroative and commercial art, folk art, photography, film, and architecture. Also indexes book reviews, dissertations, and art reproductions.

Communication & Mass Media Complete

Why search here? You need sources for projects related to communication and media. 

What's included? Scholarly journal articles - 917 active indexed and abstracted journals, including full-text for 192 of them.

Film & Television Literature Index Full Text

Why search here? You're doing research on film or television.

What's included? Journal articles on film & television theory, preservation & restoration, writing, production, cinematography, technical aspects, and reviews.

McClatchy-Tribune Collection

Why search here? You need current news from news wires, newspapers, television, and radio shows.

What's included? News reports from the last 90 days. Compiled from around 300 McClatchy-Tribune Information Services sources, it includes newspaper articles, news wires, television show transcripts, and radio broadcast transcripts. Sources are raw text only.

MLA International Bibliography

Why search here? This is the principal resource for scholarship in languages, linguistics and literature.

What's included? Full-text articles from scholarly journals, citations for books and dissertations, proceedings, essays and bibliographies are international in scope. The Thesaurus identifies terminology appearing in current scholarship to create more precise searches. Folklore, the history of printing and publishing, dramatic arts, film and broadcasting are also included.

Performing Arts Periodicals Database

Why search here? You need academic journals in the performing arts.

What's included? Performing Arts Periodicals Database covers a broad spectrum of the arts and entertainment industry - including dance, drama, theater, stagecraft, musical theater, circus performance, opera, pantomime, puppetry, magic, performance art, film, television and more.

Readers' Guide Full Text Select

Why search here? You need coverage from popular magazines. 

What's included? The full-text of almost 300 magazines, mostly from the mid-1990s to the present.

Readers' Guide Retrospective

Why search here? You need coverage from historical popular magazines. 

What's included? Citations to over 3 million magazine articles from 1890-1982.

Times Literary Supplement (TLS) Historical Archive

Why search here? You want to read about books, the arts, and culture.

What's included? 1902 to a few years ago. Includes book reviews, book extracts, essays & poems from leading writers from around the world. Also major articles on subjects from anthropology to zoology, philosophy to politics, comedy to psychology. Also reviews of the latest in fiction, film, opera, theatre, dance, radio, and television.

General Databases

Academic Search Complete

Why search here? Great starting point, with something for every subject! 

What's included? Lots of full-text, mostly peer-reviewed and recent, with some older and popular sources.

Dissertations: ProQuest Dissertations & Theses Global

Why search here? You want to read graduate student dissertations and theses on a topic - often giving you extensive bibliographies, and occasionally cutting edge research on new topics. 

What's included? Index of doctoral dissertations and some master's theses from most North American and many European colleges and universities. Starts in 1743. Full text is available for over 1 million, mostly since 1996.

Google Scholar

Why search here? You need a variety of scholarly and professional sources like journal articles, books, reports, and proceedings.

What's included? Information about published resources, sometimes with links to the full-text, covering most disciplines.

Humanities Full Text

Why search here? You want scholarly journal articles in the humanities.

What's included? About 600 journals, mostly peer-reviewed, covering art, history, theatre, music, religion, film, philosophy, literature, and language. 


Why search here? It's an excellent tool for scholarly articles and books/chapters from university presses, covering most disciplines.

What's included? The collection's strength lies in its complete back issues of journal titles covering 75 disciplines, while a weakness is a "moving wall" limiting access to the most recent journal issues - the coverage skews older, so it's not always a great starting point for researching topics that need to have the most current sources.

Newspaper Source Plus

Why search here? You need news from around the world. 

What's included? Articles from more than 800 U.S. and international newspapers; TV and radio news transcripts. 

New York Times

Why search here? You need primary source material on world news, arts and culture, technology, science and more within the last 40 years.

What's included? Full-text (but not page images) from the late 2000s to the present.

Project Muse

Why search here? You need scholarly articles on the humanities and social sciences.

What's included? Project Muse is a collection of established and longstanding scholarly journals in full-text for humanities and social sciences journals. Strengths of this collection include its caliber of content with historical and the current holdings.