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Chapter 03

Using libraries and the Internet

This chapter deals with how to make the best use of libraries and the books and electronic resources they contain. It also offers advice on how to use the Internet discriminatingly as a research tool.

To see a sample from this chapter, click here.

Cross references from Music in Words

Library classification systems

When you use a library, it is a good idea to familiarize yourself with its classification system (the method by which the books are catalogued and stored). Most American libraries use the Library of Congress system.

Library databases

Two important databases for music research which you may be able to access through your library are RIPM (Répertoire international de la presse musicale/Retrospective Index to Music Periodicals 1800-1950) and RILM Abstracts of Music Literature (RILM stands for Répertoire international de littérature musicale/International Repertory of Music Literature). You can find out more about them from their homepages. http://www.ripm.org/

See also the Cross references section on the Chapter 8 webpage.

Helpful external Web sites

Public Libraries.com gives a state by state guide to each public library in the USA.

A similar resource is offered by Libcat.

Canadian Library Gateway gives a comprehensive search facility for libraries in Canada.

LibDex offers a guide to public and academic libraries in Canada.

The Jean Gray Hargrove Library at Berkeley University provides excellent advice on how to find and use library resources.

JSTOR is an online archive of articles from periodical publications made freely available on the Internet. Included here are articles from journals related to a range of subjects other than music as well as items published in music journals. The search engine allows full-text search by keywords.

The University of Indiana was one of the pioneer institutions in gathering useful information from the worldwide web. Two addresses are given here: the first is for the William and Gayle Cook Music Library, which offers a range of online facilities, the second for its Worldwide Internet Music Resources page.

Yale University's Music Resources on the Worldwide Web provides hundreds of links classified by topic.

The Golden Pages. An enormously impressive and encyclopaedic portal.

A free online course on different aspects of the Internet is offered by Log in to Learn.

A similar learning package known as Safari is provided by the library of the Open University of the UK.

Chapter bibliography

World Guide to Libraries Plus. CD-ROM. Munich: K.G. Saur, 1996-.

World Guide to Libraries Plus is an electronic resource that may be available in your library. It gives the contact details for over 80,000 libraries worldwide, as well as summarizing their holdings. It is updated annually.

Buckley, P., and D. Clark. The Rough Guide to the Internet. 13th rev.ed. London: Rough Guides Ltd., 2007.

Books about the Internet go out of date very quickly, so always look for the most recent edition. Also check Internet guides that are actually on the Internet, such as those mentioned above.

See also the bibliography and links for Chapter 8.

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