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English 160 &161: Introduction to Library Research

Researching Stand-Up Comedy, Vaudeville, and the Minstrel Show

What is a Primary Source?
A primary source is material that was created at the time being studied.  It can be a document, a recording or an artifact.  It serves as an original source of information about the topic. Primary sources are distinguished from secondary sources which usually are analysis, commentary or a filtered account of the topic. 

Types of primary sources (might also work as search terms for finding primary resources in the library catalog or Summon):

  • Film/video clips
  • Personal narrative: autobiographies, memoirs
  • Audio recordings
  • Artwork
  • Photographs
  • Historical newspapers or magazines

Tools for finding Primary Sources:



All video content is available via the library's access to Kanopy. This content is available to UIC users only. 

Women in Comedy: Makers: Women in Comedy tracks the rise of women in the world of comedy, from the "dangerous" comedy of 70s sitcoms like Maude to the groundbreaking women of the 1980s American comedy club boom and building to today's multifaceted landscape. Today, movies like Bridesmaids break box office records and the women of Saturday Night Live are often more famous than their male counterparts. Contemporary comics talk about where women started in this competitive, male-dominated profession and where they are determined to go.

Adventures in Comedy: Featuring candid interviews with comedy legends, including: Janeane Garofalo, Jim Gaffigan, Margaret Cho, Aisha Tyler, Ari Shaffir, Kurt Metzger, Michael Che, Godfrey, Ted Alexandro and many more, Adventures in Comedy delves into the adversities that all comedians face on their roller coaster journeys toward fame. The film shadows one comic's (Tom McCaffrey) experiences doing stand-up, giving a glimpse into the harsh realities and struggles that come with following his dreams at any cost.

DIRECTIONS: Based on your assigned group number, you have 10 minutes to review the provided source below. After reviewing the sources you and your group members have 10 minutes to  illustrate the answer to the specific question using images, icons or symbols. Written text can be used but should not be the primary way you communicate the answer. 

Group ONE: What is the anatomy of a scholarly/peer-reviewed article?​

  • Tutorial of anatomy Link
  • How to analyze a scholarly article Video
  • Parts of a scholarly journal article Video

Group TWO: What is a periodical and what are the differences between Scholarly and Popular periodicals?

  • ​​Types of periodicals Link
  • Types of periodicals Video
  • Popular scholarly comparison Link
  • Scholarly vs popular Video

Group THREE: What is the difference between a database, journal, and article?

  • ​What is a journal and peer-reviewed article? Video
  • Journal? Article? Database? Video
  • What is the difference? Link 

Group FOUR: What is a citation and what is the anatomy of a citation?

  • ​What is a citation? Link
  • Citation anatomy  Link
  • MLA Citation Tutorial Video

Group FIVE: What issues or questions should a student be aware of when evaluating sources?

  • ​Evaluating information Video
  • Evaluating websites  Video
  • Evaluating sources for credibility Video
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