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Library Research Guides

Cultural Competence

Increase intercultural awareness and competencies for traveling abroad and living among culturally diverse populations.

Encyclopedias, Ethnographies, Series & Travel Guides

World

Countries and their cultures (2001 ebook)

National entries include information on history, ethnic relations, urbanism, government, society, economy, religion, health, arts, food, etc.

Native Peoples of the World (2013 ebook)

Introductory entries of native groups, countries and some related concepts.

Worldmark Encyclopedia of Cultures and Daily Life (2009 ebook)

Volumes organized by continent, entries by ethnic or national group. Covers history, language, politics, customs, religion, social issues, daily life, relations, etc.

Encyclopedia of World Cultures (1991 ebook)

Volumes organized by continent, entries by ethnic group. Includes introduction, history, economy, social relations and organization, religion, etc. This encyclopedia builds onto eHRAF information.

Music Online: Garland Encyclopedia of World Music (database)

Volumes by continent. Regional entries discuss instruments and styles of ethnic subclusters. Includes audio samples.

Encyclopedia of Religion (2005 ebook)

Entries include regional religions, religious concepts and figures. 

Encyclopedia Mythica (website)

Concise mythological, folkloric, bestiary and heroic entries. 

Giants, Monsters and Dragons: An Encyclopedia of Folklore, Legend, and Myth (2001 book)

Entries of mythical creatures.

They Eat That? (2012 ebook)

Encyclopedia of weird and exotic foods from around the world.

Food Cultures of the World Encyclopedia (2011 ebook)

Volumes organized by region, entries by country. Covers major foodstuffs, cooking, typical meals, eating out, special occasions, etc.

Encyclopedia of Food and Culture (2003 ebook)

Entries by concept. Includes regional entries that relate historical influences, variations, daily meals and food for special occasions.

Oxford Companion to Food (2014 ebook)

Entries by concept. Includes descriptions of food and regional or national cuisine.

Encyclopedia of sex and gender : men and women in the world's cultures (2004 book)

Encyclopedia begins with gender concept, differences, roles and institutions discourse, followed by ethnic group entries that include a cultural overview and gender-related information.


 USA & Canada

Gale Encyclopedia of Multicultural America (2000 ebook)

Entries by American ethnic group. Covers history, food, language, customs, greetings, social and gender dynamics, arts, media, etc.

Multicultural America: An Encyclopedia of the Newest Americans (2011 ebook)

Entries by immigrant groups in the U.S. Covers background, migration and assimilation, demographic profile, impact on the U.S., later generations, notable people, etc. Includes timeline, map and statistics.

Encyclopedia of Canada's Peoples (1999 book)

Entries by Canadian ethnic group. Covers origins, migration, community, family, culture, religion, politics, etc.

A Native American encyclopedia: history, culture, and peoples (2015 book)

Entries organized by region and ethnic group. Includes overview, history, religion, government, customs, economy, dress, war and contemporary issues.


Latin America

Encyclopedia of Latin American History and Culture (2008 ebook)

Entries by concept. Covers Portuguese-speaking regions and includes people, places, works, policies, languages, etc.

The Oxford Encyclopedia of Mesoamerican Cultures (2001 ebook)

Entries by concept. Includes people, arts, religion, major civilizations' geography, cultural ecology, language and history.

Encyclopedia of contemporary Latin American and Caribbean cultures (2000 book)

Entries by concept. Includes arts, literature, media, political and social institutions, biographies, etc.

Concise Encyclopedia of Latin American Literature (2000 book)

Entries by concepts, including types of literature, famous people, countries, etc.

Encyclopedia of Latin American and Caribbean literature, 1900-2003 (2004 book)

Entries by concepts, primarily of works, people and countries. Focuses on the experimental literary expression beginning at the end of the 19th century.

Encyclopedia of Latin American Theater (2003 book)

Entries organized by country. Includes overview, followed by short biographies.

Handbook of Mesoamerican Mythology (2000 book)

Introduction to the Mesoamericans, their history, and myths. Covers deities, themes and concepts.


Europe

One Europe, many nations: a historical dictionary of European national groups (2000 ebook)

Entries by ethnic group. Includes flag, map, descriptions of the people, their homeland, history, language, religion, etc.

Ethnic groups of Europe: an encyclopedia (2011 book)

Entries by ethnic group. Overview discusses history, demography, language, etc.

Eastern Europe : an introduction to the people, lands, and culture (2005 book)

Volumes organized by region, entries by country. Covers geography and demography, minorities, language, political systems, cultural development, etc.

Encyclopedia of Eastern Europe: from the Congress of Vienna to the fall of communism (2000 book)

Entries by concept. However, there are country-specific entries on geography, art, culture, language, literature, etc.


Middle East & Northern Africa

Encyclopaedic Ethnography of Middle-East and Central Asia (2005 book)

Entries by ethnic group. Includes overview of geography and population, language, history, society, family, ethnic conflict, economy, religion, culture, etc.


Africa

Encyclopedia of African peoples (2000 book)

Entries by ethnic group. Visual guide to history, language, ways of life, social structure, culture & religion.

Encyclopedia of African Nations and Civilizations (2002 book)

Entries by region, country and major civilizations. Visual guide to history and peoples of countries.


Asia & Oceania

Encyclopedia of the peoples of Asia and Oceania (2009 book)

Entries by ethnic group. Includes an overview of location, time period, ancestry and language, followed by a timeline and details about history, cultural identity, etc.

Ethnic groups of North, East, and Central Asia (2014 book) & South Asia and the Pacific (2012 ebook)

Encyclopedic entries by ethnic group. Overview describes population and history.

Encyclopedia of Modern Asia (2003 ebook)

Entries by concept. Includes people, festivals, themes, and subject entries on architecture, cuisine, cinema, literature, etc.

The Encyclopedia of New Zealand (website)

New Zealand government's online encyclopedia with entries on different ethnic groups, regions, creative and daily life, government, social concepts, nature, etc.

Need more ethnographies? Look at books within the call number range: GN301-674.

Diversity

Class and Campus Life (ebook)

World

Worldmark Encyclopedia of Cultures and Daily Life (2009 ebook)

Volumes organized by continent, entries by ethnic or national group. Covers history, language, politics, customs, religion, social issues, daily life, relations, etc.

eHRAF World Cultures (database)

This ethnographic database covers multiple aspects of cultural and social life and can be browsed alphabetically by group name, or by region or country. Includes document collection. Text may include anthropological terminology.

Encyclopedia of World Cultures (1991 ebook)

Volumes organized by continent, entries by ethnic group. Includes introduction, history, economy, social relations and organization, religion, etc. This encyclopedia builds onto eHRAF information.

Ethnographic Video Online (database)

Videos of family, cultural identity, gender roles, arts, religion, etc.


 USA & Canada

Multicultural America: An Encyclopedia of the Newest Americans (2011 ebook)

Entries by immigrant groups in the U.S. Covers background, migration and assimilation, demographic profile, impact on the U.S., later generations, notable people, etc. Includes timeline, map and statistics.


Latin America

Endangered Peoples of Latin America: Struggles to Survive and Thrive (2001 ebook)

Chapters sorted by region and communities. Provides information on traditional economy, social and political organization, religion, and threats to survival.

Native religions and cultures of Central and South America (2002 book)

Anthology of essays on select religious beliefs, concerns and practices.

Latin America Reader series

Perspectives on Las Américas (ebook) & Perspectives on the Caribbean (book)

Americas (1993 video)

English & Spanish video on issues that prevail in Latin America.

Latin America in Video (database)

Spanish video database for a variety of fields browsable by country.


Europe

One Europe, many nations: a historical dictionary of European national groups (2000 ebook)

Entries by ethnic group. Includes flag, map, descriptions of the people, their homeland, history, language, religion, etc.

Ethnic groups of Europe: an encyclopedia (2011 book)

Entries by ethnic group. Overview discusses history, demography, language, etc.

Landscape and Culture in Northern Eurasia (ebook)

Queer Cities, Queer Cultures (book)


Middle East & Northern Africa

Endangered Peoples of Africa and the Middle East: Struggles to Survive and Thrive (2002 ebook)

Chapters sorted by region and communities. Provides information on traditional economy, social and political organization, religion, and threats to survival.

Everyday Life in the Muslim Middle East (book)

Popular Culture in the Middle East and North Africa (book)

Islamic Culture in Crisis (book)


Africa

Encyclopedia of African peoples (2000 book)

Entries by ethnic group. Visual guide to history, language, ways of life, social structure, culture & religion.

Encyclopedia of African Nations and Civilizations (2002 book)

Entries by region, country and major civilizations. Visual guide to history and peoples of countries.

Global Nollywood the transnational dimensions of an African video film industry (ebook)

Perspectives on Africa (book)

Art & Life in Africa

Visual galleries and topic essays on art in and related to everyday life, education, ancient times, medicine, cultural exchange, etc. Country pages display key facts and figures, historical summary and local artworks.


Asia & Oceania

Encyclopedia of the peoples of Asia and Oceania (2009 book)

Entries by ethnic group. Includes an overview of location, time period, ancestry and language, followed by a timeline and details about history, cultural identity, etc.

Ethnic groups of North, East, and Central Asia (2014 book) & South Asia and the Pacific (2012 ebook)

Encyclopedic entries by ethnic group. Overview describes population and history.

Charting the Pacific (website)

Discover stories of lives in the Pacific and explore maps, country profiles, and regional statistics and issues.

The Encyclopedia of New Zealand (website)

New Zealand government's online encyclopedia with entries on different ethnic groups, regions, creative and daily life, government, social concepts, nature, etc.

Oceania (book)

Popular Culture Co-production and Collaborations in East and Southeast Asia (ebook)

Everyday Life in Southeast Asia (ebook)

Coconet TV (website)

Interactive timeline, games, photos, blogs, videos about and from people in the Pacific.

Tribal Asia (2004 book)

A photobook of tribes in ancient Arabia, India, mountains, Central Asia and Malay archipelago.

Society and Culture Complete Report ebook series

Entries by country. Information on gift-giving, greetings, holidays, life cycles, religion, sports, stereotypes, folklore, women, etc. Identical report and additional information on Global Road Warrior.

Culture Shock series

Travel guide titles by country. Covers land and history, society, customs, local views, lifestyle, food, touristic activities, language, work and fast facts. Commentary can be blunt and colloquial.

Cultures and Customs series

Introduces region's territory and history, then covers religion, customs, media, cinema, literature, and arts in more depth. 

Culture Smart series

Travel guide titles by country. Covers country overview, various ethnic groups, values and attitudes, customs and traditions, etiquette, local lifestyle, entertainment, transportation, business and communication.

Endangered Peoples of ... : Struggles to Survive and Thrive series

Chapters sorted by region and communities. Provides overview, traditional economy, social and political organization, religion, and threats to survival.

Encyclopedia of Contemporary Cultures series

Entries by concept. Includes arts, literature, media, political and social institutions, biographies, etc.

Popular Culture in the Contemporary World series

Overview of contemporary regional popular culture. Covers music, social movements, sports, performances, tourism, literature, icons, language, media, cinema, religion and arts.

Ethnic Groups of the World series

Entries by ethnic group. Overview discusses history, demography, language, etc.

Historical Dictionaries

Encyclopedia titles by country. Brief entries on concepts, major historical and recent events, places and people.

Facts on File library of world history series (encyclopedias)

Encyclopedias of peoples, civilizations, empires, historical periods, concepts, and more.

Etiquette Guides ebook series (China, Korea & the Philippines)

Titles by country. Includes information on character and values of the people, social etiquette, business etiquette and useful expressions.

Perspectives on... : a reader in culture, history, and representation series

Anthology of essays on history, politics, society and culture that provide a multiperspective view.

Latin America Reader series

Indiana series in Middle East studies

Kyoto CSEAS series on Asian Studies

Need guides focusing on travel/touristic sites but with some cultural information? Try Lonely PlanetFodor's, Rough Guide, Frommer's, Blue Guide, Michelin Green Guide, etc.

Travel Guides

Culture Shock series

Travel guide titles by country. Covers land and history, society, customs, local views, lifestyle, food, touristic activities, language, work and fast facts. Commentary can be blunt and colloquial.

Cultures and Customs series

Introduces region's territory and history, then covers religion, customs, media, cinema, literature, and arts in more depth. 

Culture Smart series

Travel guide titles by country. Covers country overview, various ethnic groups, values and attitudes, customs and traditions, etiquette, local lifestyle, entertainment, transportation, business and communication.

Etiquette Guides ebook series (China, Korea & the Philippines)

Titles by country. Includes information on character and values of the people, social etiquette, business etiquette and useful expressions.


Relevant Travel & Etiquette Information

Global Road Warrior (database)

This database provides basic country facts and lengthier articles on business, security, health, utilities, communication and entertainment. Addresses some stereotypes and demonstrates popular phrases in foreign languageseBook versions available in Mirlyn.

CultureGrams (database)

Simple and easy to read overviews of over 200 countries, focusing on different populations’ customs, lifestyles and societies from an American perspective. Includes a Kids, USA, Canada and World Edition.

GoinGlobal

Commisceo Country Guides (website)

Country guides discuss language, culture, customs and etiquette. This website also features additional blog posts regarding cultural awareness.

World Business Culture

Business culture and etiquette guide to countries.

TransitionsAbroad

Articles on work, study, travel and living abroad. This website has a large leisure travel section and its own online magazine.

Passport to Trade European Business Culture

Select a country to read more about its business culture (communication, etiquette, etc.). Also includes information about the country, its history, cultural taboos, education, transport, being a foreigner in the country, and additional resource links.

Etiquette 101: Listen Up! (article)

How to say hello, good-bye, please, thank you and help in various languages, and country-specific greeting tips.

JourneyWoman What Should I Wear & Where (website)

"What to wear" tips for women traveling to select countries.

CultureCrossing etiquette guide (website)

Community-built basic, work and study etiquette guides by country.

Eating Abroad: the cultural resonance of food (article)

An article that shares food tips for travelers.

AfricaGuide

General African arts and culture, food, tribe, music, festivals information, basic country overviews, photo library and articles related to touristic travels in Africa.

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Print Books

Diversity

Atlas of American Diversity (1998 book)

Introduction to some of the large ethnic groups in the U.S. and includes some overviews, maps and charts of their population growth, projections, regional concentrations and other demographic information.

Taking on Diversity (book)

World

Culture Smart series

Travel guide titles by country. Covers country overview, various ethnic groups, values and attitudes, customs and traditions, etiquette, local lifestyle, entertainment, transportation, business and communication.

Popular Culture in the Contemporary World series

Overview of contemporary regional popular culture. Covers music, social movements, sports, performances, tourism, literature, icons, language, media, cinema, religion and arts.

Religion & Everyday life and Culture (2010 book)

Vol. 1: Practice in history, entries by regions. Vol. 2 & 3: Practice in public and in private, entries by theme.

Giants, Monsters and Dragons: An Encyclopedia of Folklore, Legend, and Myth (2001 book)

Entries of mythical creatures.

Holiday Symbols and Customs (2009 book)

Entries of ancient and modern world holidays, describing origins, symbols and customs.

The Folklore of World Holidays (1999 book)

Entries of holidays by date and region, describing customs and beliefs.

Encyclopedia of Sex and Gender: Men and Women in the World's Cultures (2004 book)

Encyclopedia begins with gender concept, differences, roles and institutions discourse, followed by ethnic group entries that include a cultural overview and gender-related information.


USA & Canada

Encyclopedia of Canada's Peoples (1999 book)

Entries by Canadian ethnic group. Covers origins, migration, community, family, culture, religion, politics, etc.

A Native American encyclopedia: history, culture, and peoples (2015 book)

Entries organized by region and ethnic group. Includes overview, history, religion, government, customs, economy, dress, war and contemporary issues.

美国纪行 : 一个中国学者眼中的美国生活 by 黄安年

Across the Pond by Terry Eagleton

eBooks

Diversity

Census Atlas of the United States (2007 ebook)

The U.S. Census Bureau's publication that includes hundreds of maps related to population distributions sorted by factors such as age, sex, race, ethnicity, language, education, income, housing, etc.

The Costly (and Humorous) Impact of Cultural Blunders (PDF)

Culturosity.com's humorous examples of intercultural miscommunication to illustrate why cultural awareness and competence are important.

Decoding Other People's Accents (PDF)

American Translators Association's article on some sound substitutions from foreign language speakers, followed by 3 questions to ask yourself in order to help "decode" accents.

Obamistan! Land Without Racism (ebook)

Diversity Explosion (ebook)

American Ethnic History (ebook)

Class and Campus Life (ebook)

 

World

Countries and their cultures (2001 ebook)

National entries include history, ethnic relations, urbanism, government, society, economy, religion, health, arts, food, etc.

Native Peoples of the World (2013 ebook)

Introductory entries of native groups, countries and some related concepts.

Worldmark Encyclopedia of Cultures and Daily Life (2009 ebook)

Volumes organized by continent, entries by ethnic or national group. Covers history, language, politics, customs, religion, social issues, daily life, relations, etc.

Encyclopedia of World Cultures (1991 ebook)

Volumes organized by continent, entries by ethnic group. Includes introduction, history, economy, social relations and organization, religion, etc. This encyclopedia builds onto eHRAF information.

Encyclopedia of Religion (2005 ebook)

Entries include regional religions, religious concepts and figures. 

Oxford Handbook of Global Religions (2006 ebook)

Book sorted by religious cultural region, with entries on societies and communities in contemporary context.

They Eat That? (2012 ebook)

Encyclopedia of weird and exotic foods from around the world.

Food Cultures of the World Encyclopedia (2011 ebook)

Volumes organized by region, entries by country. Covers major foodstuffs, cooking, typical meals, eating out, special occasions, etc.

Encyclopedia of Food and Culture (2003 ebook)

Entries by concept. Includes regional entries that relate historical influences, variations, daily meals and food for special occasions.

Oxford Companion to Food (2014 ebook)

Entries by concept. Includes descriptions of food and regional or national cuisine.

Culture Shock series

Travel guide titles by country. Covers land and history, society, customs, local views, lifestyle, food, touristic activities, language, work and fast facts. Commentary can be blunt and colloquial.


 USA & Canada

Gale Encyclopedia of Multicultural America (2000 ebook)

Entries by American ethnic group. Covers history, food, language, customs, greetings, social and gender dynamics, arts, media, etc.

Multicultural America: An Encyclopedia of the Newest Americans (2011 ebook)

Entries by immigrant groups in the U.S. Covers background, migration and assimilation, demographic profile, impact on the U.S., later generations, notable people, etc. Includes timeline, map and statistics.


Latin America

Endangered Peoples of Latin America: Struggles to Survive and Thrive (2001 ebook)

Chapters sorted by region and communities. Provides overview, traditional economy, social and political organization, religion, and threats to survival.

Encyclopedia of Latin American History and Culture (2008 ebook)

Entries by concept. Covers Portuguese-speaking regions and includes people, places, works, policies, languages, etc.

The Oxford Encyclopedia of Mesoamerican Cultures (2001 ebook)

Entries by concept. Includes people, arts, religion, major civilizations' geography, cultural ecology, language and history.

Glencoe World Geography textbook - Ch.9: The Cultural Geography of Latin America (PDF)

Simple overview of Latin American people, history and culture. Includes graphs and maps for ethnic groups, languages, migration and urbanization, historical empires and religions.

Perspectives on Las Américas (ebook)


Europe

One Europe, many nations: a historical dictionary of European national groups (2000 ebook)

Entries by ethnic group. Includes flag, map, descriptions of the people, their homeland, history, language, religion, etc.

Landscape and Culture in Northern Eurasia (ebook)


Middle East & Northern Africa

Endangered Peoples of Africa and the Middle East: Struggles to Survive and Thrive (2002 ebook)

Chapters sorted by region and communities. Provides overview, traditional economy, social and political organization, religion, and threats to survival.


Africa

Into Africa: A Guide to Sub-Saharan Culture and Diversity (2009 ebook)

General introduction to African communities, communication, customs, business etiquette, travel tips and regional differences.

Society and Culture Complete Report ebook series

Entries by country. Information on gift-giving, greetings, holidays, life cycles, religion, sports, stereotypes, folklore, women, etc. Identical report and additional information on Global Road Warrior.

Global Nollywood: The Transnational Dimensions of an African Video Film Industry (ebook)


Asia & Oceania

Ethnic Groups of North, East, and Central Asia (2014 book) & South Asia and the Pacific (2012 ebook)

Encyclopedic entries by ethnic group. Overview describes population and history.

South Asia and the Pacific (2012 ebook)

Encyclopedic entries by ethnic group. Overview describes population and history.

Encyclopedia of Modern Asia (2003 ebook)

Entries by concept. Includes people, festivals, themes, and subject entries on architecture, cuisine, cinema, literature, etc.

Etiquette Guides ebook series (China, Korea & the Philippines)

Titles by country. Includes information on character and values of the people, social etiquette, business etiquette and useful expressions.

Popular Culture Co-production and Collaborations in East and Southeast Asia (ebook)

Everyday Life in Southeast Asia (ebook)