Oklahoma State University

Literary Criticism Databases from Gale Cengage Learning

The OSU Library now offers several comprehensive literary criticism databases from Gale Cengage Learning to help students, faculty, and beginning as well as advanced researchers find scholarly commentary on British, American, and world authors, literary works, and overviews of literary periods and topics. These databases offer searchable online PDF versions of the well-known Gale reference book series, and include biographical information about writers, lists of their works, bibliographies of criticism, and interpretive essays and excerpts from scholarly books, journal articles, and other publications.

The databases below are available on the OSU Library home page in "Databases" under the "Find Articles" section of the page. Find them alphabetically, or go to the English Department Subject Page for a complete listing.

  • Dictionary of Literary Biography Complete Online provides more than 16,000 biographical and critical essays from the celebrated Dictionary of Literary Biography series, the DLB Documentary series, and the DLB Yearbook series. It covers the lives, works, and careers of the most influential literary figures in the world from all eras and genres. Browse by author or volume of the print series, or search keyword, full text, or named author.
  • Literary Criticism Online offers a comprehensive compilation of literary commentary on authors, works, and topics. It contains scholarly and popular literary criticism from broadsheets, pamphlets, encyclopedias, books and articles delivered in an online format. Series included in this online collection are Shakespearean Criticism (SC), Poetry Criticism (PC), Short Story Criticism (SSC), Nineteenth-Century Literature Criticism (NCLC), Twentieth-Century Literature Criticism (TCLC), and Contemporary Literature Criticism (CLC). Browse by author, literary work, or topic, or search by keyword, full text, named author, named work, critic, or source publication.
  • Something About the Author provides first-time comprehensive online access to the acclaimed and long-standing Something About the Author Gale series, which examines the lives and works of authors and illustrators for children and young adults and is the preeminent source on authors and literature for young people. Includes biographies, brief biographies, autobiographies, and obituaries. Browse authors or search by keyword, full text, or named author.

The PDF page image documents in these databases can all be reformatted for reading (at different sizes), printing or viewing in a separate window, or emailed

Click to enlarge image

Example of PDF document from Literature Criticism Online

Also from Gale Cengage Learning, for students and researchers interested in film or screen studies, the OSU Library offers an online searchable version of the Gale Contemporary Theatre, Film, and Television series. This database provides biographical and career information on people currently working in the entertainment industry such as directors, actors, and others working in the film industry.

Citing in Modern Language Association (MLA) Style, 7th Edition

To cite sources from the Gale Cengage Learning literary databases in MLA style, 7th edition (2009), cite the essay as you would an essay in a book or journal article with page numbers, and then add the name of the database, medium of publication (Web), and the date of access.

Wagner, Linda W. "William Faulkner (25 September 1897-6 July 1962)." American Novelists, 1910-1945. Ed. James J. Martine. Dictionary of Literary Biography Vol. 9. Detroit: Gale Research, 1981. 282-302. Dictionary of Literary Biography Complete Online. Web. 13 September 2010.

For additional help with MLA Style, consult the OSU Library’s Quick Guide to Using Style Manuals: MLA at

For more information, contact

David Oberhelman
English Liaison Librarian
Humanities & Social Sciences Division
Edmon Low Library
Oklahoma State University
Stillwater, OK 74078-1071
Telephone: (405) 744-9773
Email: d.oberhelman@okstate.edu