Use subject dictionaries and encyclopedias to define terms and concepts in the context of American government and politics.
- Oxford Guide to the United States Government - See the entry for bean soup, or this one on federalism.
- Congress and the Nation - See this article on the Background on Congressional Organization, 1789-1945
Looking for information on a particular politician or political figure? Try these resources:
- Politics in America gives a biographical sketch of every member of Congress. See this article on Nancy Pelosi.
- A Dictionary of Political Biography, by Oxford Reference Online, includes an A to Z listing of political figures. Entries focus more on world politics. Here is the entry for Hillary Clinton.
- For more biographical resources, see this list on the Political Science Subject Guide - Biographies.
Already have a political figure in mind? Search our catalog for books and other materials. Watch the video on the main Search page to find out more about what the library offers and how you can get to it!
Every issue has at least two sides. Be ready for debate by staying on top of the issues. The Library is here to help!
- CQ Researcher is the perfect resource for staying on top of global and national issues.
- Opposing Viewpoints similarly places issues in the context of debate. Each entry pulls together selected resources surrounding a specific topic.
- For instance, see this entry on Government Bailouts of Private Industry.
Once you've chosen an issue, don't forget to Search our catalog for books and other materials.
See also this recent Library Blog post about Fetching Newspapers.
If you need more scholarly information regarding a topic or issue, the Library's subscriprtion article databases are usually your best bet.
- CQ Electronic Library (CQ Press)
Combines many CQ Press resources for research in American government, politics, history, public policy, and current affairs.
- CQ Magazine - Each issue of CQ Weekly looks forward and back. Your readers get in-depth reports on issues looming on the congressional horizon, plus a complete wrap up the previous week's news, including the status of bills in play, behind-the-scenes maneuvering, committee and floor activity, debates and all roll-call votes.
- CIAO - Columbia International Affairs Online
A resource that aggregates dispersed content about theory and research in international affairs. CIAO includes working papers from university research institutes, occasional papers series from NGOs, foundation-funded research projects, proceedings from conferences, books, full-text journal articles and policy briefs, and teaching materials including original case studies written by leading international affairs experts, course packs of background readings for history and political science classes, and special features.
- Congress.gov - research about laws, votes, legislation and Congress
Falvey Library has a wide selection of resources concerning elections and campaigns. Try these to start:
- CQ Voting and Elections Collection
- American National Election Studies
- Encyclopedia of U.S. Campaigns, Elections, and Electoral Behavior
- Elections A to Z
Public Opinion and Polling
Here are some selected resources for public opinion and polling. For a comprehensive list of library resources in this area, see the Polling Information Topic Guide.
- Encyclopedia of Political Communication
- Routledge Companion to News and Journalism
- Recent books concerning mass media and American politics from Falvey Library