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HIST 425: Caribbean Race and Slavery

Finding Background Information

Use these sources to gain familiarity with your topic, narrow your research question, provide context, and identify experts.

Note on search terminology
Latin America is generally considered to include the entire continent of South America along with Mexico, Central America and the islands of the Caribbean whose inhabitants speak Spanish, French, and Portuguese (i.e., Romance languages.)
When searching, using Latin America will find materials that discuss collectively several or all of the countries described above. To search for a specific nation(s), use the individual country names.

Choosing a Topic

Taking the time to carefully choose and refine your topic can save you significant time and effort later in your research.

Primary and Secondary Sources in History

Primary sources = Evidence

  • Created during the time period or event you are studying, or produced by a participant (even if after the fact)
  • Primary sources are defined by how they are used (i.e. as evidence for interpretation of the past) rather than by what they are (i.e. format or type of material)

Secondary sources = Analysis and interpretation

  • Written by historians, scholars, and other researchers
  • Secondary sources are based on the analysis and interpretation of primary evidence and other sources