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Comparative Literature

A resource guide for the study of Comparative Literature.

Using subject headings to search in library catalogs

General subject headings

Subject headings are words and phrases which constitute a "controlled vocabulary" to categorize books by subject field. Subject headings often indicate the contents of books in terms that their titles (or your keywords) do not use, which often may be very general.

Use general subject headings for searching a broad topic or more specific subject headings for a specific text, film, or play. You will find (more) headings specific to the subject category within the left-hand facets in our online catalog, Bobcat. If you want to see the subject headings for a specific title, click on the "details" link in the title record. Here are some examples:

  • Literature, Comparative -- American and Russian
  • Literature, Modern -- History and criticism
  • Comparative literature -- Argentine and Irish
  • Literature, Comparative -- American and English
  • Comparative literature -- Spanish and English

Author subject headings

You can also use subject headings to locate material on a specific author. When referring to specific people, subject headings often include birth and death dates. Here are some examples:

  • Gogolʹ, Nikolaĭ Vasilʹevich, 1809-1852 -- Criticism and interpretation
  • Nabokov, Vladimir Vladimirovich, 1899-1977 -- Knowledge -- Literature

Using the NYU Libraries' catalog

The NYU Libraries' catalog allows you to search for books and book-length materials in our collections. It now also includes many of our online databases, allowing you to view articles and other materials in your search.

A selection of recent titles in Comparative Literature

Finding online full-text in Literature Online (LION)

Literature Online logo.

Literature Online (LION) isn't just for literary criticism - it also contains full-text editions of major works (and some not so major works as well!). There are a number of ways to search for texts, so here are a few:

  • Using the "Texts" link in the top menu and then the "search" option, search for works using title, author, or keywords.
  • Using the "Texts" link in the top menu and the "browse" option, select "All texts" to browse by literary period. You can also see poems from major anthologies and literary works published in journals.

Recommend a title for purchase

Have you heard about a great book, but found that it is not available in the NYU Libraries? You can now recommend that a copy be purchased for the collection.