LTWR 307 Writing Workshop in Argument and Analysis

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Getting Started

Getting Started on "Prufrock"

As "The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock" by T.S. Eliot is arguably the best known of his shorter works, it should not come as a surprise that there are many sources available where this is written about, derived from, or referred to.

Being as that you have all ready read the poem, what you now need to find in the library resources are works that assist you in analyzing the work and Eliot's intent in order to make your argument.

That is what this page is for. There are many places to look, some more easily navigated than others, and a wide variety in quality of scholarship.

Let's find the best with the least amount of work!

Books & Catalog

Prufrock - Books

You can find useful chapters in scholarly books that critque this work from a variety of aspects.

Some ways to search are:

The ever-popular keyword (default) search using the term PRUFROCK--

  • You will find yourself digging through irrelevant and unscholarly material to get the 'good stuff'.

The subject term PRUFROCK--

  • provides a more focused result, but not many sources.


What about searching for criticism of Eliot? Specifically his poetry, or analysis of his work. "Prufrock" was not written in a vaccum, it was one of many works produced and many scholars have written on Eliot.

Try a subject search on Eliot. T. S and look for criticism as a sub-heading.


And that is just books! Let's look at articles in the databases next...

Articles & Databases

Prufrock - Articles

There are several ways to access articles through the Library and the thorough researcher will explore them all to find the best and most relevant resources for their paper. The following are listed from the not so useful to the most useful.

1) The Discovery Search is the default search tool on the library home page. This searches almost everything CSUSM has and because of that, I do not recommend it as a place to start because you will have too much that is not relevant to sort through.

2) Articles+ searches most of our full text databases. Note the "almost" as there are collections it does not search due to software incompatibillity. Again, not where I recommend to start, but it is better than Discovery.

3) Specific databases! These are the best choice as they are most focused on your disciplinary needs, rather than gathering from any old source. The databases I recommend are:

Literature Criticism Online is collected from the entire span of intellectual thought. In this source, you will find criticism contemporary to Eliot through material published in the past few years.

MLA International Bibliography as it is THE source for literature research, but be aware it has some limitations (explained on the MLA tab.)

There are other databases as well such as JSTOR, but MLA is really the place to start and will generally point you to those other databases, so start with MLA and the tricks on the next tab. 

Need Help?

Torie Quiñonez

Arts and Humanities Librarian
Office Location: 
KEL 3426
Office Hours: 
By appointment

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