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English Literature information resources: Facts & data

Handbooks

A handbook is a single-volume reference book of compact size that provides concise factual information on a specific subject, organized systematically for quick and easy access. The following lists just a few of the handbooks useful for English Literature research.

General

The Oxford companion to American literature, The Oxford companion to Canadian literature, and The Oxford companion to English literature. Available via Oxford Reference Online

A handbook to literature [print]

The poetry handbook: a guide to reading poetry for pleasure and practical criticism

A Handbook of critical approaches to literature [print]

The Cambridge guide to literature in English [print]

The Cambridge companion to Canadian literature [print]

Time Period

Classical myths and legends in the Middle Ages and Renaissance [print]

A companion to English renaissance literature and culture [print]

Romanticism: an Oxford guide [print]

The Victorian literature handbook [print]

The Oxford companion to twentieth-century literature in English [print]

A concise companion to modernism [print]

Theme

The handbook of African American literature [print]

A critical handbook of children's literature [print]

The Cambridge companion to Shakespeare [print]

The feminist companion to literature in English: women writers from the Middle Ages to the present [print]

There are many individual volumes devoted to particular time periods, literary movements, geographic areas and specific authors. The Cambridge Companion to Literature series is a great place to start.