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The Invention of Wings by Sue Monk Kidd

LSC-Kingwood Common Read for 2016 -2018

Getting Started

One of the first steps in any research project is to acquire a basic understanding of the scope of your chosen research topic.

Many of us have skipped this step, but doing so is to your own detriment in the success of writing a good research paper. Getting a broad understanding, knowing what's going on, or more generally understanding the context about your topic will save you a lot of hassle later. Knowing in broad terms within your topic will help you create a research question or a thesis statement that you will then research.

Reference material are the best places to start. In the Get Background Information box are some examples of great resources that cover topics related to issues covered in Sue Monk Kidd's book. Click on the book links, log in using your library card number, and click on the entry that you wish to read. Note that we give you suggestions about what you'll find in the book under the call number.

As you read through some of the reference entries:

  • Write down any questions that come to mind. These might be the start of a research question.
  • Jot  down keywords or important terms. These terms will be useful when you start diving deeper in your search for information. Make a mind map; how do these terms connect to one another? Are there synonyms or related terms that may be useful.
  • Keep in mind that not everyone has the same interests or perspective. If you're unsure about your research path, check in with Professor Beaman to make sure you're on the right course.
  • Download the Keyword Activity worksheet below to help guide you though the brainstorming process.

Get Background Information

slave narratives from project gutenbergSlave Narratives:  A Folk History of Slavery in the United States from Interviews with Former Slaves
by United States Works Project Administration
Project Gutenberg




American Negro Slavery from Project GutenbergAmerican Negro Slavery:  A Survey of the Supply, Employment and Control of Negro Labor as Determined by the Plantation Regime
by Ulrich Bonnell Phillips
Project Gutenberg



American Negro Slavery from Project GutenbergThe Grimke Sisters
by Catherine H. Birney
Project Gutenberg



Other Reference Resources

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