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World History: Starting Points

Last Updated: Mar 4, 2024 10:06 AM


Welcome to the UB Research Guide for World History. On the current tab, Starting Points, you can find some excellent points of departure for historical research in our library's collections as well as resources from across the Internet. To explore reference works (dictionaries, encyclopedias, handbooks, etc.) on specific topics, eras, or problems in history, click on the Topical Overviews tab. Under the tab Primary Sources, you can uncover original historical source material in multiple media, including texts, images, audio, video, maps, and statistics. The links listed under Tools for Researchers connect you to vital additional software and tools for more effective research in history, including citation indices, book reviews, repositories, dissertations and theses, citation management software, and guides to academic research and writing.

Top Databases in History

In these resources you can find abstracts, citations, or the full text of articles published in scholarly and popular journals on topics in world history.

Albrecht Dürer, Kopf eines Afrikaners (Head of an African Man).Albrecht Dürer, Kopf eines Afrikaners (Head of an African Man). Exact date unknown; 15th/16th c. Europe. Public domain (Source: 2).

Open Access & Public Domain Resources

Open access (OA) is a contemporary movement in online research, designating websites, databases, and other resources that voluntarily place no restriction (paywalls, etc.) on access to their information and frequently also put up few or no barriers to the further use of that information (Source: Wikipedia, "Open access"). The public domain is a legal designation for the condition of intellectual property (books, music, etc.) for which the exclusive rights of distribution and reproduction have expired, been waived or forfeited by their owner, or are otherwise inapplicable (Source: Wikipedia, "Public domain"). The links listed in this section represent a mixture of open access and public domain resources, sometimes within the same site or service. We encourage you to bear in mind that certain legal restrictions on the use or reproduction of material in these resources may still apply, regardless of their designation as 'open access' or 'public domain' on this guide.

Kitagawa Utamaro, Three Beauties of the Present Day.













Kitagawa Utamaro, Three Beauties of the Present Day. Japanese Ukiyo-e style woodcut. 1792/3. Public domain (Source: 1).

Focused Topical Overviews

These resources offer compact, authoritative discussions of focused topics, individuals, or research areas in history, as well as bibliographies to begin your research.


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