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Introduction to library research in the arts: Practice inclusive citing

An introduction to research concepts and techniques for University of Redlands students in fine, literary and performing arts, developed as an Open Educational Resource (OER)

Learning objective

  • Identify strategies for citing inclusively in your research projects.

Question to consider

  • How often are you aware of the social positionality of the authors of the sources you cite - their race, gender, sexual orientation, nationality, dis/ability or socioeconomic class?
  • What factors might cause you to be aware or not aware of these aspects of an author's identity?

Activity: Who are you citing?

This activity asks you to examine your citation practices to understand whose viewpoints you are including in your research. You'll need a recent literature review or completed research paper that you have written containing up to 20 sources.

First, read Maha Bali's blog post where she explains why inclusive citing is worthwhile and how she cultivated this practice herself.

Now, review the works cited list of your paper or lit review.

For each author cited, try to identify the author's self-identified race and gender expression using published statements (e.g. social media, an interview with the author, a biographical statement).

Discussion questions

  • Based on what you were able to infer about these authors, what races or genders do you find most often among your sources?
  • What do these findings tell you about the visibility of authors with minoritized racial or gender identity?
  • How can you use Bali's suggestions to strengthen a habit of inclusive citing in your future research?

Adapted from:

Bellamy, Liz . "Whose Shoulders Are You Standing On? Inclusive Citation Practices in Literature Reviews." CORA (Community of Online Research Assignments), 2020.

Key point

  • It is worthwhile to consider the positionality of sources that you cite. Inclusive citation habits can strengthen your research and help you engage fully with the reality of the topics you are studying.