Here is a short list:
A textbook. Textbooks introduce
a topic to non-specialists and generally include a bibliography of
books and articles consulted. A good chapter can provide an overview
and the bibliography can point to more information.
A general encyclopedia covers the entire range of human knowledge
in brief. A search for a basic concept recalls every mention of that
concept in the encyclopedia, indicating different contexts for it
and some of the fields of study that have explored it.
Subject Encyclopedias cover
the knowledge base of a single discipline in brief. A search here
can familiarize you with some of the different contexts within which
your topic has been discussed in a discipline.
Periodical Indexes. Searching
a simple term in a general periodical database like
EbscoHost Academic Search Premier
retrieves articles from magazines and journals
that include your topic. This will give you a chance to see what's
being written on your topic in magazines like Time, Sports Illustrated, or
Psychology Today, and journals like Communication Quarterly,
Journal of Sociology, or Urban Studies.
Hot topic Web sites
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