Skip to Main Content

African American Life

Tips for Searching in This Topic

Search Tip #1

A search term can be used in combination with another search term to improve the relevance of your search results in databases, the Library's Discover and Catalog searches, and even in Google and other search engines.

To find materials about the arts and cultural aspects of Americans of African descent, start with the search term "African Americans" then add a second or even third search term.


  • "African Americans" AND "music history"
  • "African Americans" AND "literary criticism"
  • "Harlem Renaissance" AND influence

Search Tip #2

Try searching "African Americans" as a subject instead of a keyword to limit results to materials that are about African Americans. A keyword search only means that your searched term appears somewhere in the text of the books and articles in your results.

Search Tip #3

As an example, here are just a few of the subject terms we noted when retrieving the books listed on this page:

African Americans in the performing arts African Americans -- Race identity
American literature -- African American authors -- History and criticism African Americans -- Intellectual life
American poetry -- African American authors Essays -- African American authors
Speeches, addresses, etc., American -- African American authors Essays -- Women authors
African American aesthetics Harlem Renaissance

Databases in African American Art and Culture

Can't find it? Contact ILL!

Books and articles not found in UTD Library collections can be requested at no charge through Interlibrary Loan (ILL).

Delivery time: Books/Media: 5-10 business days; Article/Chapter PDF: 1-2 days.