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Anthropology: Reference Materials

Why Reference Sources?

Is your research topic too big to cover in a short paper?  Is your topic so specific that sources will be hard to find?

Before you even begin your research, start the process with reference sources-- in the Library's Reference Section or online in our databases.  Reference books, like subject encyclopedias, can give you a head start and make your research easier in the long run.  Use reference sources to:

  • find a topic
  • narrow your topic
  • find keywords
  • get background information on your topic

MOST IMPORTANT:   Encyclopedia of Anthropology

Collections of Many Online Reference Books in one place:

Credo Reference     and    Gale eBooks / Gale Virtual Reference Library   and   Salem Press

Oxford Reference and Sage Knowledge Reference also have thousands of scholarly, academic articles, but they are a bit more difficult to use.   Click here to find instructions on how to use these collections of reference books.

Anthropological Toolkit:  Sixty Useful Concepts

Anthropology Theories. From the University of Alabama.
Atlas for Anthropology. Reference  G 1046 .E 1 S 1 1968.
Biographical Dictionary of Anthropologists.
Biographical Dictionary of Social and Cultural Anthropology. General GN 20 .B 56 2004

Cassells's Peoples, Nations, and Cultures
Celebrating Life Customs from Around the World: An Encyclopedia.
Cambridge Encyclopedia of Hunters and Gatherers . General GN 388 .C 35 1999.
The Complete Encyclopedia of Signs & Symbols : Identification and Analysis of the Visual Vocabulary that Formulates our Thoughts and Dictates our Reactions to the World around Us. Reference AZ 108 .C 65 2011
Cultural Anthropology Terms.
Definitions of Anthropological Terms. From Oregon State University.
Dictionary of Anthropology from Anthrobase.
Dictionary of Race, Ethnicity and Culture .
Encyclopaedia Britannica Online.
Encyclopedia of Community: From the Village to the Virtual World .
Encyclopedia of Cultural Anthropology. Reference GN 307 .E 52 1996
Encyclopedia of Gender and Society .
Encyclopedia of Global Studies
Encyclopedia of Life Writing: Autobiographical and Biographical Forms .
Encyclopedia of Race, Ethnicity, and Society. Reference HT 1521 .E 63 2008.
Encyclopedia of Rural America: The Land and People. Reference E 169 .E 5 1997
Encyclopedia of Social and Cultural Anthropology
Etiquette and Taboos around the World : A Geographic Encyclopedia of Social and Cultural Customs.

Explaining Human Culture, an encyclopedia from HRAF:  The Human Relations Area Files
Faces Around the World: A Cultural Encyclopedia of the Human Face 

The Global Encyclopedia of Informality:  Volume 2, Understanding of Social and Cultural Complexity

Indigenous Peoples:  An Encyclopedia of Culture, History, and Threats to Survival
Key Concepts in Ethnography.

Open Encyclopedia of Anthropology, from Cambridge University

The Oxford Encyclopedia of Intergroup Communication
Routledge Encyclopedia of Social and Cultural Anthropology.
The Sage Dictionary of Cultural Studies .
Sage Encyclopedia of Intercultural Competence.
Student Atlas of Anthropology. Reference GN 25 .S 78 2004   An online encyclopedia of signs and symbols.

Theory in Social and Cultural Anthropology:  An Encyclopedia.

World Culture Encyclopedia

World Directory of Minorities and Indigenous Peoples

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