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Theater 130: Contemporary Playwrights of Color   Tags: course  

A library research guide for students in Priscilla Page's class at UMass Amherst.
Last Updated: Nov 17, 2016 URL: Print Guide RSS Updates

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Your assignment: Write your own research based performance piece!

You will work both in class and on your own on this project which is, ultimately, an interview theater piece. Your model text for this project is Undesirable Elements: Real People, Real Lives, Real Theater by Ping Chong.  Using this book, you will model your work after Chong’s approach to community-based storytelling. It will include personal writing, interviews and research that you will develop into a one-act script.


Quick Search: UMA WorldCat

UMA WorldCat is a discovery tool that helps you find a wide range of materials using a single search. Books, journals, articles, videos and more can be located using UMA WorldCat.

Doing research on contemporary communities and playwrights of color

Where to research playwrights and communities of color?

Start with these databases: Make sure to read the descriptions so you know what kinds of research resources you are searching.

  • America: History and Life
    Citations and abstracts for journal articles, dissertations, and book reviews relating to United States and Canadian history. Good for Critical/Cultural History portion of your assignment.
  • Bibliography of Native North Americans
    Covers books, essays, journal articles, and government documents on native North American history and culture from pre-history to the present.
  • Ethnic NewsWatch
    Full-text articles from newspapers, magazines and journals of "ethnic" communities in the United States. Good for researching production histories. Also good for Critical/Cultural History portion of your assignment. In several languages, 1965-present.
  • Google Scholar
    The same Google interface you know and love--but it searches only scholarly, academic information, rather than the whole Web.
  • Hispanic American Periodicals Index (HAPI)
    Articles from scholarly journals on Central and South America, Mexico, the Caribbean, the US -Mexico border area, and US Latinos.
  • Historical Abstracts
    Journal articles, books and dissertations on world history from 1450 to present.
  • Historical New York Times
    The entire New York Times, searchable, in image files, from 1851 to three years ago. Good for researching production histories.
  • International Index to the Performing Arts
    Citations to articles in journals covering theater, dance, film, and puppetry. Good for researching production histories.
  • LexisNexis Academic
    Massive database of US and international newspapers, 1980-present. Good for researching production histories.
  • MLA International Bibliography
    An index to journal articles and other scholarly literature on literature, literary theory and criticism, linguistics, folklore, and film.
  • Sociological Abstracts
    References to scholarly journal articles, dissertations, and conference papers on sociology and related disciplines.

Tip for databases

After you've run a search, use the button to retrieve articles or to be taken directly to the Interlibrary Loan request page, so you can order the article if UMass does not have it.


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W.E.B. Du Bois Library
University of Massachusetts
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Reference & Research Assistance Desk hours, Spring 2017: Mondays 11:30-1, Tuesdays 5-7, and Wednesdays 9-10. In New Africa House: Wednesdays 1-2:30, room 323. Also available by appointment.

Reference Services


Learn about journals and journal artices!

What's a peer-reviewed journal?
Many of our journals are peer-reviewed. If you don't know what that means or why it matters, watch this video.


Citation Management

Use a citation manager, such as RefWorks to keep track of your research.

Put all your references in RefWorks, create quick and easy bibliographies, build your knowledgebase.


If you need more help or info on RefWorks, check out the online guides and webinars or Ask a Librarian.

If you're looking for another citation management option to RefWorks, try Zotero.

© 2016 University of Massachusetts Amherst.

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