Tips for Searching Online Databases and Indexes

January 15, 2010

Finding the Articles Indexes and Databases

  • In order to access them you will need to log on from off-campus
  • Go to UCSB’s library’s website (
  • Click on “off campus login” located in the upper right-hand corner.
  • You will be directed to a new page, where you will be asked to enter your UCSBNetId and password.  These are the same as your id and password for your umail account.  Enter these, then click on “login.”
  • If you are successful, you will be directed to another page with a list of resources.  Click on “article indexes and databases.”  You will be directed to a very valuable list of “article indexes and databases” through which you can search and from which you can pull resources.

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Research Tips

January 15, 2010
  1. Conduct preliminary research.
  2. Use online databases.
  3. Consider other resources: Check bibliographies and works cited to get a sense of the most important articles. Use reference books.

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Review Prompt

September 3, 2009

Prompt: Write a short (500-750 words) review of the school’s production of Twelfth Night.

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Prompt V: Cymbeline

September 3, 2009

“Posthumus is the ostensible hero of the piece, but its greatest charm is the character of Imogen.  Posthumus is only interesting for the interest she takes in him, and she is only interesting herself from her tenderness and constancy to her husband.  It is the peculiar characteristic of Shakespeare’s heroines, that they seem to exist only in their attachment to others.  They are pure abstractions of the affections…No one ever hit the true perfection of the female character, the sense of weakness leaning on the strength of its affections for support, so well as Shakespeare…They are the prettiest little set of martyrs and confessors on record.” (William Hazlitt, Characters of Shakespeare’s Plays)

Prompt: Focusing on the character of Imogen or that of the Queen, think about how these women change or are changed during the play.  In your paper, persuasively argue for the significance of that change.

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Prompt IV: “Antony and Cleopatra”

August 25, 2009

“Across the center of the shield were shown/ the ships of brass, the strife of Actium:/ you might have seen all of Leucata’s bay/ teeming with war’s array, waves glittering/ with gold.  On his high stern Augustus Caesar/ is leading the Italians to battle,/ together with the senate and the people,/ the household gods and Great Gods…And facing them, just come/ from conquering the peoples of the dawn,/ from the red shores of the Erythraean Sea—/together with barbaric riches, varied/ arms – is Antonius.  He brings with him/ Egypt and every power of the East/ and farthest Bactria; and – shamefully –/ behind him follows his Egyptian wife.” — Virgil, The Aeneid, translated by Allen Mandelbaum, lines 874-895

Prompt: Looking at the scenes surrounding and including the battle of Actium in act III, I want you to tell me why Cleopatra flees the battle.  You must convincingly support your interpretation of Cleopatra’s flight with evidence from the text.

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Link to Nahum Tate’s Adaptation of Lear

August 24, 2009

For about a century and a half, the original version of Lear never appeared on stage.  Instead, players performed this Restoration era adaptation by Nahum Tate (1681).

King Lear: Questions for Act III

August 20, 2009


  • III.i arguably serves as a prologue to the storm episode (which alternates between scenes on the heath and scenes inside Gloucester’s house).  II.4 just ended with Cornwall stating: “Shut up your doors…Come out o’th’ storm,” as he exits Kent and a Gentleman enter and Act III begins with this exchange:

    Kent: Who’s there besides foul weather?
    Gent: One minded like the weather, most unquietly.

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Prompt III: “King Lear”

August 17, 2009

“So to see Lear acted, — to see an old man tottering about the stage with a walking-stick, turned out of doors by his daughters in a rainy night, has nothing in it but what is painful and disgusting.  We want to take him into shelter, and relieve him.  That is all the feeling which the acting of Lear ever produced in me.  But the Lear of Shakespeare cannot be acted.” — Charles Lamb “On Shakespeare’s Tragedies”

Prompt: Paying close attention to the sequence of scenes and their interaction with each other, offer a persuasive analysis of the storm episode (Act III) that situates it in the larger context of the play.  In short what is the effect and purpose of this episode?

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August 14, 2009

“Open Silences” in Act Five

August 13, 2009

1.)    Isabella – Isabella is not only silent to the Duke’s two proposals (ll. 490-491 & 532-537), but also when reunited with her brother Claudio, whom she thinks dead.  Does this silence indicate tension between brother and sister, after all Claudio wanted her to offer herself to Angelo and she refused (as far as he knows)?  Nor does she say anything when her brother is married off.  How does she respond to the Duke?  How does she respond to Claudio (and Juliet)?

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