Databases to Inspire

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As many of us gear up for WR150 or, perhaps, start thinking about teaching a new theme next fall, Ken Liss has shared a few BU databases that might help you next semester or inspire you in designing a new class…

American Film Scripts Online

This database not only has over 1,000 scripts, but also includes facsimile images of original screenplays with handwritten notes and annotations from films like Martin Scorsese’s Mean Streets and Charlie Chaplin’s Gold Rush.

AP Images

The database from the Associated Press includes a treasure trove of images as well as audio sound bites, graphics, and text.

The Berg Fashion Library

Interested in textiles, art history, theatre, or anthropology? This database includes not only images, articles, but also searchable ebooks on anything fashion-related.

The Database of the Vanderbilt Television News Archive

The focus on this archive is on “creating, preserving and providing access from the U.S. national television networks” and so this database as been recording news broadcasts since August 5, 1968. The collection has newscasts from ABC, CBS, NBC, CNN and Fox News, but it is also worth taking note that this collection includes all of the commercials that appeared with the original broadcasts.

Ethnic NewsWatch

A social science database that includes journals, magazines, and newspapers from ethnic and minority presses. Ethnicities include: African American/Caribbean/African; Arab/Middle Eastern; Asian/Pacific Islander; European/Eastern European; Hispanic; Jewish; Native People. And along with the current collection of “Ethnice NewsWatch” (1990-present) – there is also an archive called “Ethnic NewsWatch: A History” which spans from 1959 to 1989.

rock’s backpages

This database calls itself the “online library of pop writing,” but the archive actually covers all genres of popular music (from “rockabilly to hip hop”). It has over 25,000 pieces of music journalism that span the last 50 years.

Roper Center: Public Opinion Archives

Specializing in data from surveys of public opinion since the 1930s, this database primarily focuses on the United States, but over 50 other countries are represented. For a sense of just how deep these archives are – there are more than 20,500 questions on education since 1936 and over 12,300 questions on Terrorism since 1966.

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