Skip to Main Content

History Since 1500

About This Page

Our library subscribes to many databases that provide citations, abstracts, and sometimes links to full-text articles. This page identifies useful databases to which the library subscribes. 

Using JStor

JSTOR stands for Journal Storage.  It is an electronic archive of older issues of some important academic journals.  Some faculty members like to search it by topic because of the convenience of the full text.

I do not recommend searching JSTOR by subject unless you are looking for a very specific unusual word or phrase you can find no where else! Why:

1. Nothing in JSTOR is current. It is journal storage. There is a delay of at least three--and usually five--years between journal publication and inclusion in JSTOR.

2. It is a key word only search.  There is no subject searching.  If you search for your word or phrase in the title and the author used another word or phrase, the article will not appear. 

3. Searches yield too many hits, many of them irrelevant.  Do you really want to look through 600 or more articles for a few useful ones? Scholars can go through large searches and identify the few relevant articles relatively quickly because they are already very  familiar with the subject.  Students cannot.

Use a more specific database to identify articles.  Use the Journal Locator to determine if we own the article: the Journal Locator includes the journals in JSTOR.

Using Databases

Use a licensed database rather than a regular search engine to identify articles in respected journals rather than miscellaneous stuff on the Internet..

Our library subscribes to many databases that provide citations, abstracts, and sometimes links to full-text articles. 

You may want to look for background information or ideas for refining topics in World History in Context, which offers some coverage and selected bibliography on a wide range of topics in world history.  It is not a very deep or substantial source, and includes a lot of irrelevant "news"  but can be a useful starting point.

Historical Abstracts is the main database in history and covers history of the world, excluding the U.S. and Canada. It is a modern history database, with coverage that begins about 1450 c.e.

You may also wish to consider more general databases

Humanities Abstracts.

Academic OneFile.

Always use Advanced Search. 

If you get  many hits, consider limiting your search to "peer-reviewed" publications. 

Some of the hits will be book reviews.  Book reviews can be useful in identifying book titles, but they are not articles.

Do not limit your search to full-text only.  We may have access to articles as part of other subscriptions.  Or you can request a copy on interlibrary loan using the journal request form.


This is a library tutorial on understanding citations found in searches of online databases and bibliographies.

Reading Citations Tutorial

Understanding Citations Tutorial

Tutorial: Reading Citations in an Online Database

Self Assessment: Reading Citations


Profile Photo
Sonia Pacheco
chat loading...
Email me

Claire T. Carney Library
Ferreira-Mendes Portuguese-American Archives
Room M07 (Map to my office)
285 Old Westport Road
Dartmouth, MA 02747