Step-By-Step Development of a Research Paper
"Langston Hughes and the Invention of the Blues Poem"
Step 2: Locate Sources
Luke's first step was to explore library resources. Using the library's online catalog, he located encyclopedia articles and biographical information on Langston Hughes. He was also able to find a number of critical works on the Harlem Renaissance that included commentary on Hughes's life and work.
As he worked, Luke consciously separated his sources into two categories: primary and secondary. Sources featuring original works by Hughes were classified as primary; sources compiled by later biographers or literary critics were classified as secondary.
His teacher, Mr. Palumbo, had instructed the students to use the MLA format for citing sources. Therefore, Luke made bibliography cards that looked like this:
Lewis, David Levering. When Harlem Was in Vogue.
New York: Oxford University Press, 1979.
My note: Interesting account of Langston Hughes's early days in Harlem, pp. 78–87
Each bibliography card identified the author, title, publisher, and city and date of publication, as well as any reminder notes for himself. He made sure to include information about the pages where he obtained his information.
Next, Luke searched for online sources. Typing the search term Langston Hughes into a search engine, he uncovered 1.6 million results. The top-ranking results were these:
- Langston Hughes - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Langston Hughes was born in Joplin, Missouri, the second child of schoolteacher Carrie (Caroline) Mercer Langston and her husband James Nathaniel Hughes ...
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Langston_Hughes - Cached - Similar
- Langston Hughes - Poets.org - Poetry, Poems, Bios & More
James Langston Hughes was born February 1, 1902, in Joplin, Missouri. His parents divorced when he was a small child, and his father moved to Mexico.
Yusef Komunyakaa - Marvin Bell - Lynda Hull - Arna Bontemps
www.poets.org/lhugh/ - Cached - Similar
- Poet: Langston Hughes - All poems of Langston Hughes
Born in Joplin, Missouri, James Langston Hughes was the great-great-grandson of Charles Henry Langston (brother of John Mercer Langston, the first Bla ...
www.poemhunter.com/langston-hughes/ - Cached - Similar
- Books by Langston Hughes
The Collected Poems of Langston Hughes - 1996 - 744 pages
Not Without Laughter - 1995 - 308 pages
Five Plays - 1963 - 280 pages
books.google.com - More book results »
- Langston Hughes
Langston Hughes biography and poetry. A history of Jazz before 1930. This site contains over 1000 songs from this era in Real Audio 3 format, ...
www.redhotjazz.com/hughes.html - Cached - Similar
- Langston Hughes
Short illustrated profile, along with a timeline that shows major events which shaped the writer's life.
www.americaslibrary.gov/cgi-bin/page.cgi/aa/hughes - Cached - Similar
- Langston Hughes - Poems, Biography, Quotes
Free collection of all Langston Hughes Poems and Biography. See the best poems and poetry by Langston Hughes.
famouspoetsandpoems.com/poets/langston_hughes - Cached - Similar
- Langston Hughes and His Poetry Webcast (Library of Congress)
David Kresh discusses Langston Hughes and his poetry. Speaker Biography: David Kresh was ...
Related Library Resources. Other Resources on ...
www.loc.gov/today/cyberlc/feature_wdesc.php?rec=3352 - Cached - Similar
As a first step to evaluating his results, Luke looked at the domains in the Web addresses. He knew that URLs with the suffixes .edu and .gov are generally more reliable than ones with the suffixes .com and .org. Luke saw that one result was a Webcast from the Library of Congress. He decided to watch the Webcast to acquire an overview of the subject matter.