Library Resources for Tolkien (ENG221)

Reserve Materials 

Your instructor has put many resources on reserve for this class. Reserve materials are at the Circulation desk in the Salem campus library. Go to items on reserve for ENG221 for a list of resources on reserve for this class.


The personal reserve copies (PC) can be checked out only on a Chemeketa ID and cannot be requested through the system to be sent to other libraries. Other copies of the same books, however, are available for request and checkout in the CCRLS or Summit systems. See

Two of the reserve list books, Lord of the rings, 1954-2004 and Hobbits, Elves, and Wizards ..., are also available online as Chemeketa e-books.

Works of Literary Criticism 

These materials talk about the theme, style, structure, and purpose of literary works. You can find the information in books or in journal articles.

The best place to start is probably:

Literature Resource Center
Includes more than 650,000 full-text articles, critical essays and reviews from over 300 scholarly journals and literary magazines. Also includes book reviews in the popular press. The default search is by author, or you can click "Title" to search for a particular work. After searching, click the "Literary Criticism" tab. There is a sub-tab for Articles. See picture below.

Picture of Literature Resource Center screen

More information on how to use Literature Resource Center is available at Literature Resource Center: A Guide to the Basics.

Finding Books 

map of Oregon and Washington, showing counties that have Summit and/or CCRLS libraries

To find more books on Tolkien, search in a library catalog. The CCRLS catalog covers Chemeketa and the public libraries in its area.

The Summit catalog covers 37 college and university libraries in Oregon and Washington.

See below for more information and a detailed map of Summit libraries.


In any catalog, you may have to do several searches to find books that might be pertinent to your subject.

If you live in the Chemeketa Cooperative Regional Library Service (CCRLS) district, you may also access the catalog online at your local public library. In addition to the books in the Chemeketa College Library, the catalog also contains the collections of the 17 public libraries located in the regional library district. You can request books through the catalog, and can pass your search through to Summit (see below).


Chemeketa students registered for credit may use Summit, the Orbis Cascade Alliance catalog, to request items from 37 member libraries in Oregon, Washington, and now Idaho. Summit uses a search called WorldCat. Authorized users have access to all of the material in the Chemeketa Community College library, plus about 28 million items in Summit. Chemeketa users may request items using the barcode number from their ID card, and have them sent to Chemeketa, or they may set up a Visiting Patron account at another Alliance library.

Electronic Books 

Chemeketa has electronic books in its catalog. To see the ones relating to Tolkien, see Electronic books on Tolkien. When you click Connect To This Title, you will be asked for a user name and password. Use your My Chemeketa login.

Here a few additional essays appearing in e-books:

Shippey, Tom. "Tolkien, medievalism, and the philological tradition." 
       Bells Chiming from the Past : Cultural and Linguistic Studies 
       on Early English. Eds. Isabel Moskowich-Spiegel and Begoña 
       Crespo-Garcia. New York: Rodopi, 2007. 265-279. Web. 14 
       Sept. 2012.

Finding Journal Articles 

Literature Resource Center, described above, includes journal articles as well as material from books. Another source for articles is JSTOR:

JSTOR JSTOR is a digital archive of journal content. Chemeketa has the archive collections Arts & Sciences I and Arts & Sciences III, comprising about 400 journals. The collections are strong in the humanities.

How to Search for Articles in JSTOR:

Enter terms to describe the topic you are looking for. Use quotation marks to keep words together as a phrase as in "lord of the rings." Using the words AND, OR, and NOT between terms will narrow or broaden your search. You can also narrow your search by document type. For example, the search below uses the Advanced Search page limit results to articles,excluding book reviews.

The results list will include citations for articles that include the terms you searched for. The image below shows one of the citations found with the "lord of the rings" AND beowulf search. Clicking on the title of the article or the PDF link will display the full text for the article. Note that the green checkmark indicates the full text is available. In some cases only part of the text may be available or you may link to another site for the full text.

You can save or email the citation to yourself from the results screen. If you want to email the full text of the article, view the PDF, save the PDF file then attach the PDF file to an email and send.

Academic OneFile [Gale]

Available through Gale, Academic OneFile includes full text for thousands of scholarly periodicals covering a wide variety of topics including literature.

How to Search for Articles in Academic OneFile:

Gale Academic OneFile's advanced search displays a screen with multiple spaces for key words, as shown below. Try putting "Tolkien" on the first line and the title of the book on the second line. Then check off the boxes next to "Full text," and "Peer-reviewed journals." Click Search.

picture of Gale advanced search screen

You can also Academic OneFile Subject Search. To do a subject search for information in the database, start Academic OneFile and click on the Subject Guide Search link in the toolbar banner.

picture of Gale Subject Search screen

  1. Type an author's name, last name first, in the space marked "Find Subject."
  2. Then click the Go button.
  3. Click on the name in the resulting list to see the articles, or click the Subdivisions link to see more specific aspects of the subject, such as "Criticism & interpretation."
Picture of Gale Refine Search sidebar

When you click a subject, a list of articles will appear. If you wish, you can use the "Refine Results" sidebar to limit your search to full electronic text. An option is also available to add a word to your search or to limit results to peer-reviewed (i.e., scholarly) journals.

Some Articles Not in Gale Databases

Three major journals are especially helpful for Tolkien studies. Chemeketa does not subscribe to these journals in print. If you would like an article from one of these journals that is not available in full text online, please contact the library for an Interlibrary Loan request. ILL requests are a free service. The three journals are:

  • Mythlore: Available in full text from September 2002 to the present in Academic OneFile.
  • Mallorn: Request articles through Interlibrary Loan.
  • Tolkien Studies: An Annual Scholarly Review: Chemeketa has volumes II-VIII on ebrary Academic Complete. The Tolkien Studies publisher's website includes tables of content for most issues. These can be used to identify articles of interest to request by Interlibrary Loan, if ebrary does not have them.

Internet Sources

Internet Public Library Online Literary Criticism Collection -
This site has over 4,000 critical sites selected according to criteria of scholarship and serious critical analysis.

Other Reference Resources 

Subject Encyclopedia

A good place to start with your research is the J.R.R. Tolkien Encyclopedia. It is a printed book located in the reference collection. Ten Summit libraries have this book.

Literary Handbooks

These reference books and sites will explain specialized literary terms that may be found in works of criticism:


Some reference books at Chemeketa


The Cambridge Guide to Literature in EnglishR 820.9 C14
The Concise Oxford Dictionary of Literary Terms (also available in Oxford Reference Online)R 803 C74
A Dictionary of Critical Theory [Online]
A Glossary of Contemporary Literary TheoryR 801.95014 H31
A Multicultural Dictionary of Literary TermsR 803 C18
A Handbook to LiteratureR 803 H73
Merriam-Webster's Encyclopedia of Literature (Also available online in Literature Resource Center Click Dictionaries)R 803 M55
New Handbook of Literary Terms[Online]
The Oxford Companion To English Literature (also available in Oxford Reference Online)R 820.3 Ox2

Internet Literary Reference Sources

The Forest of Rhetoric: Silva rhetoricae -
A dictionary of figures of speech.
U Vic Writers' Guide -
Click "index" for an alphabetical list of terms, or browse by categories

Sources of Reference for Mythology, etc.

Benet's Reader's EncyclopediaREF 803 B43 1996
Brewer's Dictionary of Phrase And FableR 801.95014 H31
Brewer's Dictionary of Modern Phrase And Fable[Online]
Dictionary of Celtic mythology (also available online)REF 299.16 M19
Dictionary of English Folklore[Online]
Handbook of Norse mythologyREF 293.13 L64
The lore of Ireland : an encyclopaedia of myth, legend and romance REF 398.209415 Oh5
Norse mythology: a guide to the Gods, heroes, rituals, and beliefs[online]
Oxford Reference Online has a number reference books on mythology and folklore [online]

Internet Mythology Sources

Encyclopedia Mythica online covers Norse and Celtic mythologies, among others.

To comment or request help, please e-mail Reference or call 503.399.5231.

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Updated: 13 August 2014