English Literatures Collection Development Policy


    The English Literatures collection supports the programs of instruction and research offered by the UCSB Department of English. The policy seeks primarily to support the department's curriculum through the doctoral level, and all faculty research and scholarship.



    • Subject Areas. This policy covers the full range of literatures in English including, but not limited to, literary theory, comparative literature, literary criticism, and history of literature, from Anglo-Saxon to modern times in all genres. Materials for the Medieval Studies Program and the American Cultures Center at UCSB fall within the scope of much of this collection development policy. Current faculty scholarship includes ethnic literature, gay and lesbian literature,cinema, Anglo-Saxon literature, history of theater, Medieval studies, sociology, anthropology, feminism, African and Caribbean literature, fantastic literature, music, and aesthetic theory, all of which is supported by this collection policy. A significant amount of material in the Department of Special Collections is directly relevant to literary studies and is within the scope of some areas of this policy.
    • Chronology. Coverage is comprehensive from the Anglo-Saxon period to the present. Criticism, literary theory, and literary history are collected widely in all time periods. Subjects other than literature that fall within the scope of the subject areas listed above are collected selectively on a title-by-title basis and cover all time periods.
    • Language. The collection consists primarily of literary texts and criticism in English. Translations of major foreign language literary works are collected selectively. Reference materials and other secondary works of history and criticism are collected almost exclusively in English, with occasional scholarly works in other languages purchased selectively, usually by faculty request.
    • Publication Dates. Emphasis is on current publications. Whenever possible, retrospective acquisitions are made to upgrade specific areas of the collection or to replace lost or damaged books.
    • Geographic Areas. Literary works from every part of the world are represented in the collection. Emphasis is on publications from Great Britain and the United States, but English language materials that originate elsewhere are widely collected. In response to faculty interests, there is a new emphasis on acquisition of current and retrospective publications from or about the Caribbean and Africa.


    • Monographs and Texts. Primary emphasis is on monographs and monographic series. Most reference works are collected, particularly bibliographies, literary encyclopedias, catalogs, and indexes. Includes selected materials for course reserves (including duplicate copies as necessary), reference material, and variant editions as content warrants.
    • Serials. Coverage includes major scholarly journals and newspapers in English, with particular emphasis on journals indexed in the Modern Language Association Bibliography . Subject-specific serials are collected selectively, most often by faculty request. Festschriften and proceedings of major national and international conferences are purchased regularly.
    • Microforms. This policy covers materials in all formats. Microform sets and various other facsimile formats are collected actively, especially in the areas of early English and American imprints and manuscripts.
    • Multimedia. Active collection in VHS and DVD formats, especially in the area of theater. CD-ROM format is collected selectively.
    • Exclusions. Reprints are generally not acquired unless augmented, revised, or containing other new intellectual content. Textbooks are not included in this policy. Sound recordings, ephemera, dissertations and theses are collected very selectively or not at all.

    Systemwide Resources: Materials not owned by the UCSB Libraries are most often readily available via Interlibrary Loan from other UC libraries. ILL is used heavily and is monitored to provide insight into collection areas requiring increased attention. Frequently-borrowed material is considered for acquisition.

    Constoria and Cooperative Agreements: When possible, consortia and cooperative agreements are used to augment collections, primarily through the California Digital Library. UCSB actively works with other University of California campuses to pool resources, negotiate purchases, and share materials.


Author: faulkner [at] library [dot] ucsb [dot] edu (Jane Faulkner).
Policy Last Updated: October 2004