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US Politics Within Archives: Home

Introduction

Welcome to the Yale LibGuide for PLSC 778, Archival Methods in Political Science. This LibGuide offers information on archival and database sources related to United States history, politics, and international affairs. As you might be aware, Yale holds an array of materials on these subjects, and the resources on the LibGuide are a representative sample (albeit a significant one) of what Yale has to offer researchers and scholars. While material in online databases can be accessed through a full text search, the same cannot be said for archival materials. Online finding aids provide an overview of correspondents, subjects, and activities in the papers of an individual or group, but do not provide a description of each folder, let alone each item. Conducting archival research is therefore often painstaking, glacial, and a frustrating process--one that inevitably leads to dead ends and lost time. For every nugget of historical value, therein lies boxes and folders of generic correspondence, irrelevant subject files, and folders of memorandums--initially thought to reveal spectacular insights--that contain innocuous, meaningless exchanges. The limitations of the archive are multiple--rarely does one find what they wanted or expected. This is also the joy and reward of conducting archival research: the many surprises one can find (that are not in the finding aid), the new directions archival research can take your thesis, and for the archives to provide context, clarity, and focus for your research project.

Political Terms to Explore in Archives

Political Protest/Activism

Manifesto

Rights

Protest

March

Assembly

Suffrage

Revolution(ary)

Foundations of Government

Constitution

Enumeration of Rights

Contract

Record

State

Monarchy

Raj

Intellectual/Political Thought

Body Politic

Agreements

Contract

Government

Republic

Treatise

International/Foreign Affairs

Diplomacy

Consul

Ministry

State (craft, -sman, etc)

Treaty

Negotiation

Agreement

Embassy

Ambassador

Political History

Report

Constitution

Laws

Courts

Papers

 

Senior Archivist for American Diplomacy

Michael Brenes's picture
Michael Brenes
Contact:
Manuscripts and Archives
Yale University Library
120 High Street
New Haven, CT 06511
203-436-2851

Librarian for American History

James Kessenides's picture
James Kessenides
Contact:
james.kessenides@yale.edu

Subject Guide

Bill Landis's picture
Bill Landis
Contact:
(203) 432-1069
Website

Librarian for Political Science. Global Affairs, and Government Information

Kenya Flash's picture
Kenya Flash