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Primary Sources for the Humanities guide provides an extensive list of sources which may also be useful for students of Gender, Sexuality and Women's Studies (GSWS). This guide provides a selected number of sources which are of interest to the discipline.
Finding Primary Sources at SFU
Search engine that searches both collections: Atom
- SFU Library Special Collections and Rare Books.
- SFU's University Archives.
SFU Library Catalogue
E.g. - women AND diaries
Search using specific subject terms by doing a Subject Heading Search:
The following list of subject headings could be added to a topic to narrow search results to primary sources:
- history -- sources
- personal narratives
- pictorial works
- description and travel
Evaluating primary sources
Reading and interpreting an historical document requires a thoughtful and critical approach. The following sites offer some guidelines for approach and evaluation: Reading a Primary Source , Dohistory, and Using Primary Resources.
Primary Source Databases
" the oral histories of people who presently or at one time identified as lesbian."
A collection of primary sources on social, political, health, and legal issues impacting LGBTQ communities around the world.
This unique fully-searchable collection brings together approximately 1.5 million pages of primary sources on social, political, health, and legal issues impacting LGBTQ communities around the world since 1940. Rare and unique content from newsletters, organisational papers, government documents, manuscripts, pamphlets, and other types of primary sources sheds light on the gay rights movement, activism, the HIV/AIDS crisis, and more.
The ARTstor Collection currently contains over one million images. The Collection documents artistic traditions across many times and cultures and embraces architecture, painting, sculpture, photography, decorative arts, and design as well as many other forms of visual culture.
The immediate experiences of Britsh and Irish women, as revealed in diaries and letters.
"project is a permanent, catalogued and publicly accessible online digital archive of research materials related to health and social welfare, with an emphasis on housing, gender, aboriginal issues,
HIV and mental health."
Fulltext collection of "advice literature to women," 1450 to 1910.
Primary documents. Over 400 digital collections about the history of women in the United States.
Empire Online is a collection of over 70,000 images of original manuscripts and printed material, 1492-1969, taken from libraries and archives around the world, including Africa, the Americas, Australasia, Oceania, and South Asia.
Interviews collected in the 1970s and 1980s documenting the experiences of Italian women who immigrated to Canada throughout the first three quarters of the twentieth century.
A collection of archival images dating from 1950 to 1975 celebrating the contributions of Italian women immigrants to Canadian history and culture.
The papers of the Mass Observations organisation. It offers an unparalled insight into everyday British life in the 1930s and 1940s
Full-text of letters and diaries written by North American women from Colonial times to 1950.
Oral History Online
More than 2,500 collections of Oral History in English from around the world.
Collection of manuscripts written or compiled by women in the British Isles during the 16th and 17th centuries.
An electronic collection of over sixty volumes of lyric poetry by Scottish women, written between 1789 and 1832
Searchable database of online music from around the world. Includes sound effects and spoken word recordings.
Books, images, documents, scholarly essays, commentaries, and bibliographies that document the different facets of womens activism in public life.
Documents and interpretive essays on women's involvement in World War I, primarily in Britain.
Primary sources on the internet
Many archival and library collections are now preserving, digitizing, and providing access to significant primary historical resources. The Internet also provides access to many other primary sources, such as advertisements, e-mail messages, speeches, manifestos, creative works, laws and court cases, historical documents, etc. It is always possible to search for specific items by using a web browser.