VCU Libraries

Research Guides

WRLD 203: Cultural Texts and Context: Afro-Latino Culture

Humanities Research Librarian

John Glover's picture
John Glover
(804) 828-6555
Cabell Library, Room 121F

Want to meet to talk about your research, teaching, or projects? Please get in touch.

Your Questions, My Responses

First, thank you for the kind words many of you wrote on the little sheets! It was a pleasure seeing you. I'm happy to meet with you one-on-one if you've done some research and are not coming up with anything. Just call or drop me an e-mail (contact information on the right), and we'll set something up. My schedule is somewhat flexible, but it usually takes a few days to set such meetings up, and they last 30-60 minutes.


How do you translate articles from databases?

Unfortunately most databases do not have a "translate" feature. Occasionally some foreign language articles will have English abstracts, but this is generally not enough to provide you with citation-worthy material for a paper. If you are reading an article with a snippet in a foreign language, Google Translate can sometimes help you get the gist of it, but machine/mechanical translation is never suitable to quote as a translation in a paper.

How would I search racial differences among black and latino people now and then?

It depends what you mean in terms of "racial differences." You can try searching for terms like --

racial characteristic*
racial difference*

in combination with black*, african-american*, or latin* ...but that's going to pull up a lot of stuff, much of which will not be relevant. You may want to look for resources about Latino/a culture and African-American culture separately.

What is a good library resource for examining children's books?

You can look for specific authors or works in MLA International Bibliography, ABELL, or especially Literature Resource Center, but those are focused somewhat toward literary criticism. If you are looking for images, etc. of different ethnic groups in children's literature, you might try Sociological Abstracts, ERIC, or Education Research Complete. All those databases are available on Databases A-Z.

How to properly cite articles from databases?

You can find useful information about citation on the VCU Libraries Citation Guide. Many databases will automatically cite things for you, or have a "Cite" link on the right or left side of the screen, but you need to double check to make sure the citation is accurate. As with machine translation, machine citation is not 100% reliable.

What would I type in to narrow down my research on the whitening of Afro-Latino skin?

For this topic, I would recommend searching for skin-whitening generally, as well as cosmetic-related skin topics for Latinos/Latinas generally. Some possible databases to search are the general VCU Libraries Search, Ethnic Newswatch, Sociological Abstracts, and PsycINFO. I find a few things with --

"skin-whitening" AND latin*

Can I conduct my research about another discipline the same way I would do for this class?

It's hard to give a blanket "yes" or "no" about this, because classes differ substantially in terms of their research requirements, and professors have much different requirements in terms of types of sources and processes they want you to use. Drop me an e-mail if I can provide more specific information.