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ART 468: History of Women in the Arts

Using Art Indexes, Art Full Text

Art Index, Art Full Text, and Art Index Retrospective are three databases covering a variety of topics in the arts such as fine art, decorative art, commercial art, photography, folk art, film, and architecture. These databases include full-text articles, indexing and abstracts from an array of publications.

What's the difference between these databases?

Art Index includes indexing for over 650 periodicals, more than 14,000 dissertations and over 210,000 art reproductions.

Art Full Text includes full-text articles from more than 320 periodicals dating back to 1977, and indexing of more than 210,000 art reproductions. It also includes indexing and abstracts for over 660 periodicals dating back to 1972, including 360 peer-reviewed journals, as well as for over 14,000 art dissertations.

Art Index Retrospective: 1929-1984 is an archival database that includes historical literature on a variety of art topics from 1929-1984. Includes indexing of nearly 600 publications, many of which are peer-reviewed, and citations of over 25,000 book reviews.

How do I use these databases?

Check out this video on navigating and searching an EBSCOhost database. Since they're each from the same platform (EBSCOhost), they will look and feel quite similar to one another!

Can I just search across all three at once?

Yes! Click on the "Choose Databases" link, then select which databases you'd like to search across.


JSTOR (short for journal storage) is a database of back issues of core scholarly journals in a variety of disciplines including the arts and humanities. Check out JSTOR's online Help & Support section for information on searching and navigating this resource.

InterLibrary Loan (ILL)

Can't find what you're looking for? Ask the Library to get the book you need via Interlibrary Loan.

What is InterLibrary Loan?

Interlibrary Loan (or ILL) is a service provided to obtain materials which are needed for research but are not available in the Oviatt Library.

How do I make ILL requests?

Requests are made through the automated Interlibrary Loan System. See the Interlibrary Loan page for more info.

Writing About Art

Here are some selected books in the Library on writing about art:

Chicago Style

The Chicago Manual of Style (also called CMS) is commonly used within the humanities and social sciences. The Library has several copies of CMS, both online and in print.

Here are other resources you may find useful while formatting your paper:

Searching by Keyword

Before you start your research, brainstorm some broader, narrower and/or related keywords to help with your research. These keywords can come from your own knowledge of your topic or from searching background information.

Let's say I am in the beginning stages of my research on the image of women in art of Iran.

Keyword 1 Keyword 2 Keyword 3
women art Iran
woman painting Persia
female(s) portraiture  

Searching by Proper Names

If you are researching a particular artist, remember to search on proper names such as:

  • Artist's name
  • Names of exhibitions by the artist
  • Names or individual works by the artist


Visit the OneSearch FAQ to learn all about how to use the library's new online OneSearch tool to find articles, books and more. Or, watch the How to Use OneSearch video:

Using Oxford Art Online

Oxford Art Online is an online encyclopedia of art and a great starting point for research. Entries include biographies and a vast number of images. Check out this video on navigating and searching this resource.

Using Google Scholar

You can find items the Oviatt Library owns using Google Scholar's "Find Text" capabilities. To activate the capabilities for your browser:

  1. Select Settings (near the top of the page), then Library links from the left menu
  2. In the search box, type "CSUN" and click the magnifying glass to perform search
  3. Check the box next to "CSU, Northridge (SFX Find It at CSUN)"
  4. Click Save

After performing a search in Google Scholar, select the SFX Find It at CSUN link (to the right of the article) or the SFX: Additional Options link (located below the article description) for access to online full text, Oviatt Library holdings information, and Interlibrary Loan.

Other Tips

  • Did you find a useful article? Remember to review the author's bibliography at the end - they may have cited other useful resources!
  • Keep in mind that multiple searches are needed when performing research. Consider writing down each of your keyword combinations as you work.
  • After each search, skim over the results and keep your eye out for other keywords that might be useful.