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Database Tutorials

MLA International Bibliography

Overview

For broad help with searching, finding full text, creating citations, and saving articles for later, please see the Academic Search Premier (EBSCO) page.

Searching by Author

Want to find articles about a specific author? Use the "Names as Subjects" tool. 

Sometimes it's difficult to know exactly how an author's name will appear in articles about them - sometimes they'll have multiple accepted spellings of their names (such as Fodor Dostoevsky, whose name can be spelled Dostoyevsky, Dostoievski, Dostoevsky, Dostoyevski, Dostoevskii, Dostoevski, etc.), sometimes they'll write under more than one name (such as Stephen King, who also wrote under the name Richard Bachman), and sometimes they may have a name similar to a much more prominent writer that you don't want to research.

This is where MLA International Bibliography comes in handy - they have a standardized list of author names that they use for each of their articles. You can search these names and find articles written only about that particular person, regardless of how many spellings/pseudonyms/etc they have. 

At the very top of your screen there's a menu, click on "Names as Subjects" (it will be the fourth option from the left). You will be brought to a screen that looks like this:

MLA Search Names as Subjects screenshot

Type into the small search box in the middle of your page the name of the author you'd like to search.

 

Tips:

  • Try searching just the last name of your author - all the results will be in "Last Name, First Name" order, so you're likely to get what you need that way
  • Organize your results alphabetically, rather than by relevancy - the database will attempt to only show you exactly what you need if you click "Relevancy Ranked" beneath the search box, but if you spell their name wrong or aren't exactly sure of who you're searching for, "Alphabetical" is a better option (plus, it is already defaulted, so you don't have to click anything)

 

You'll get a page that looks like this:

MLA Names as Subjects search screenshot

From here, you can do two things:

  1. Click on the author's name and see some information about them (namely, their full name, date of birth, date of death, other names, location, and general time period in which they wrote)
  2. Create a search using one or more names

 

To search by author name:

  1. From the results screen (NOT the more information screen)
  2. Click the checkbox to the left of their name(s)
  3. Click the search button (which is outlined in red above)

NOTE: MLA International Bibliography will automatically insert the Boolean operator "OR" between each of the names you check! If you want to search for articles about BOTH authors, you'll have to manually change the word "OR" in the search box (at the top of your results page) to "AND".