This guide will help you find research for intentional communities or group of communities. It includes help topic selection and finding resources like peer-reviewed articles, news, or books. You'll even find links to citation help. If you need more help finding cults, communes, and communities, make an appointment with your librarian for more help.
Engraving depicting a group of Shakers dancing (1840). Retrieved from National Park Service: https://www.nps.gov/articles/history-of-the-shakers.htm
Encyclopedias and reference sources can be a great place to begin research or help pick a topic. Try browsing through the entries or searching within to find a specific community.
Too Many Results?
1. Filter out non-scholarly articles. If you are required to find peer-reviewed articles, look for the "Peer-Reviewed" box located in most databases to quickly weed-out most non-scholarly works. This will also remove newspapers, dissertations, blogs, and governmental or business reports.
2. Select "Full-Text" whenever you can. This will narrow results automatically to articles you can read right away, avoiding unnecessary delays for Interlibrary Loan.
3. Limit your results by most recent articles only. Most databases have either a limit or sort feature, enabling you to push more recent--and therefore more authoritative--results to the top.
4. Narrow your topic by adding more keywords for a particular time, place, demographic, or perspective. If your topic is "Farmer's Markets", you may try to include other keywords like Rural, Southwest, Economic Aspects, Women.
Too Few Results?
1. Cast a broader net with your search terms. Choose more general terms, remove specific locations ("zoom out" on the map: South America instead of Brazil).
2. Remove filters like "Full-Text". This may require you to use our Interlibrary Loan Service (ILLIAD).
3. Use a thesaurus to find synonyms for keywords.
4. Try different databases. We have a variety of resources--be diverse in your searching.
5. Contact your librarian. We are happy to help you explore alternative search strategies and locations to help you find resources.