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Prof. Ostman - English 101 -Monsters: Topic Selection/Search Strategies

Topic Ideas

What cultural, social, religious or political events have influenced the popularity of monster culture?

How do zombie films reflect social or religious views?

What can superheroes teach us about humanity? About society?

What is the relationship between vampires and mortal destiny?  Fear of dying?

Who is the monster in Frankenstein?

How does the novel Dracula respond to changing gender roles?

How are race and ethnicity dealt with in the Twilight series?

How does vampire literature reflect changing societal attitudes about sexuality?

Identifying Keywords

When searching the catalog and databases for sources, do not type in whole sentences.

  • Write down possible search terms to use in the databases
  • There is no one 'correct' search word to use. Different keywords will give you more results. Think of words that mean the same or something similar as your topic and try those words too.

You may need to broaden or narrow  your search terms depending on your results :

  • Broader Search:  Vampires instead of Dracula
  • Narrower Search: Zombies instead of Undead

Use the asterisk * to truncate words and widen your search.

  • Zombi* will search for Zombie, Zombies and Zombification.

Use quotation marks to keep phrases together: 

  • "Living Dead" , "Walking Dead"

Be careful of keywords with multiple meanings

  • Aliens: Beings from Outer Space vs Undocumented Immigrants
  • Trolls: Supernatural Beings vs Annoying Internet Commenters

Try your search terms in different combinations to get the greatest number of results.


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