Bloom’s Literature

Literature Resources and Criticism Selected by Harold Bloom
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    About This Product

    With a dynamic new design, exciting new features, and the largest addition of new content in the history of the database, the award-winning Bloom’s Literature has been rebuilt from the ground up, making it an even better tool for enriching the study of literature. We’ve added to the product more than 200 additional full-length performance videos (bringing the total number to more than 400!), the full contents of more than 1,000 classic literary works, more than 350 books edited by Harold Bloom, and thousands of images. In addition, Bloom’s Literature now features a comprehensive Shakespeare Center with everything your students and researchers need to study Shakespeare—including the full text of all of his plays—plus a redesigned “How to Write about” section with improved functionality and special sections covering how to write a good essay. Bloom’s Literature’s new, intuitive interface features a clean, dynamic design that provides easy access to all of this rich content.

    Click here (PDF) for an overview of the newly relaunched Bloom’s Literature.


    • Complete coverage: Bloom’s Literature contains a wide range of reference essays and scholarly criticism examining great authors—from William Shakespeare to J. K. Rowling—and their works.
    • Full-length videos of classic plays and films: Bloom’s Literature features streaming video of more than 400 famous productions, from comedies to dramas to musicals—including Hamlet (starring David Tennant), Death of a Salesman (starring Lee J. Cobb), Julius Caesar (starring Charlton Heston), and The Glass Menagerie (starring Katharine Hepburn)—plus video clips featuring major scholars such as Harold Bloom discussing important literary topics.
    • Hundreds of full-text, classic works: Bloom’s Literature includes a Literary Classics eBook shelf containing the full contents of more than 1,000 classic works of literature—most of which were selected from Bloom’s Literary Canon—including the essential works of the most important authors in world history and literature. Researchers can filter these titles by type of work to find what they need. This eBook shelf can be found under “Resources” in the Browse drop-down menu at the top of any page or under “Browse Resources” on the right-hand side of the homepage.
    • “How to Write about Literature”: Bloom’s Literature offers specific, user-friendly guidance on how to write good essays on the most frequently studied authors and works. These guides offer strategies and ideas on how to bring deeper analysis into essays and add an extra dimension to your writing. Subjects covered for each title and author include:
      • Themes
      • Character
      • History and Context
      • Philosophy and Ideas
      • Form and Genre
      • Language, Symbols, and Imagery
      • Compare and Contrast Essays
    • Essential writing help: Two general sections on the “How to Write about” page can be used as guides for any writing project:
      • How to Write a Good Essay includes easy-to-understand advice on writing papers on a variety of general topics.
      • Preparing to Write walks readers through the different steps of putting together an essay, including preparing a thesis statement and outline; writing an introduction, conclusion, and body paragraphs; and assembling a list of works cited. A sample essay is provided.
    • Shakespeare Center: Bloom’s Literature’s all-new Shakespeare Center houses in one convenient location a treasure trove of content on all things Shakespeare. Every play is covered in depth, along with the sonnets and longer poems, providing a complete research and study center for students and researchers and a robust repository of content for educators to use for lesson planning, assignments, and classes. Comprehensive essays provide history and context to Shakespeare’s life, times, and impact. Coverage of each play includes:
      • The full, searchable text of the play
      • Analysis of key passages
      • Critical articles by noted scholars, selected by Harold Bloom
      • Introduction and background
      • Detailed synopses
      • In-depth character studies
      • Difficulties of the play
      • The play today
      • Full-length performance videos and/or critical videos
      • Images and illustrations
      • “How to Write about” articles
      • Discussion questions
    • Authors: Bloom’s Literature features a wealth of content on the finest contemporary and classic writers from around the world. The most studied authors are featured on the home page and can also be accessed via a tab in the Author Index. Authors can be browsed by name, nationality, type, and dates of birth and death. A Quick Find option in the Author index allows users to quickly search for an author by last name.
    • Works: Bloom’s Literature provides overviews, synopses, analyses, and literary criticism of thousands of works. The most studied works are featured on the home page and can also be accessed via a tab in the Works Index. Works in the Works Index can be browsed by title, genre, or publication date; they can also be filtered by author.
    • Characters: Bloom’s Literature is packed with information on more than 49,000 major and minor literary characters. The most studied characters are featured on the home page and can also be accessed via a tab in the Character Index. The “Find a Character” tab in the Character Index allows users to search for a character by name or by work.
    • Literary criticism: Bloom’s Literature includes critical essays from Facts On File’s extensive collection, Harold Bloom’s acclaimed essays, and criticism from the Bloom’s imprint.
    • Topics and themes: Bloom’s Literature features in-depth, full-text entries on literary movements, groups, periodicals, and historical events.
    • Discussion questions: Bloom’s Literature features more than 10,000 questions providing research and writing suggestions on a range of literary topics. These questions are designed to inspire students and researchers to think critically, delve deeper, and ask (and answer) fresh new questions. Educators can use them in class to spark discussion, as a starting point for lectures, or assign for independent study.
    • Full-text poems: Students and researchers can find more than 2,600 full-text poems in Bloom’s Literature. Each poem:
      • Has a corresponding analytical entry in the database available via Search, allowing students and researchers to enhance their understanding by reading the poem alongside criticism of it.
      • Is presented in an easily readable format and is accessible both via Search and from a full-text poetry gateway page users can access via the “Browse” drop-down menu at the top of the page.
    • Authoritative source list: Bloom’s Literature features a complete inventory, by type, of the sources of the content in the database, including thousands of scholarly and critical books, hundreds of peer-reviewed journals and other periodicals, respected image and manuscript archives, famous film and television producers, and much more—sources researchers can trust.


    • Tablet/mobile-friendly videos and more than 5,000 images
    • Complete A-to-Z indexes for authors, characters, and works
    • Tag “clouds” for all content, linking to other content with the same tags
    • Browsable timelines
    • Harold Bloom’s Canon of Literature
    • Student and educator curriculum tools, including “Teaching Literature through Film”
    • New and improved search capabilities, including search assist technology
    • Read Aloud tool
    • Ability for users to set preferences for default language, citation format, and number of search results
    • Persistent record links
    • A variety of integration options and partners, including Canvas and D2L (Desire2Learn)
    • Dynamic citations in MLA, Chicago, APA, and Harvard formats, with EasyBib export functionality
    • Searchable Support Center with valuable help materials, how-to tips, tutorials, and live help chat
    • Google Translate for 100+ languages.

    SIIA CODiE Award Finalist, “Best Source for Reference or Education Resources” category

    The ComputED Gazette‘s Best Educational Software Award (BESSIES), “Post-Secondary English Literature Website” category

    Library Journal Best Database, “Best Niche Product” category


    “…highly recommended for the literature reference needs of…college students.”

    “The information is accessible and easy to understand…highly recommended.”
    American Reference Books Annual

    “For literary criticism, author information, and writing help…Bloom’s Literature…is key.”
    Library Journal

    “Searching is easy…Articles are long enough to provide substantial information…”
    American Reference Books Annual

    Bloom’s Literature: 2,500+ Critical Extracts Added

    More than 2,500 critical extracts from the Writers of English series have been added to Bloom’s Literature. The Writers of English series includes everything from classic science fiction and fantasy writers, to modern mystery and suspense writers, to great African-American poets and dramatists, and much more. Read More ›

    Bloom’s Literature: New “Most Studied” Pages and More

    Several popular features in Bloom’s Literature have just been enhanced, with a new look and new functionality that make the award-winning database even easier and more intuitive to use. Read More ›

    Bloom’s Literature: New Full-Text Classic Works and More

    A wealth of new content has just been added to Bloom’s Literature, including the following: New Literary Classics The full contents of more than 200 classic works of literature have been added to Bloom’s Literary Classics eBook Shelf, bringing the total number up to more than 1,000. Read More ›

    Bloom’s Literature: Continue the Conversation from The Great American Read

    Are your students and patrons watching The Great American Read on PBS? As part of its celebration of the joy of reading, this eight-part television series presents a list of American readers’ 100 favorite novels. To build on the excitement and add to the conversation, direct interested readers to Bloom’s Literature, where they can dig deeper into these novels, along with thousands of other classic and popular works. Through overviews and synopses, literary criticism and analyses, entries on topics and themes, discussion questions, full-length film versions, and even the full contents of the books themselves on Bloom’s Literary Classics eBook shelf, users can explore their favorite works of literature in greater depth. Read More ›

    Bloom’s Literature: Spotlight on Philip Roth

    American author Philip Roth—whose works have won multiple prestigious awards for literature including the Pulitzer Prize, the National Book Award for Fiction, and the PEN/Faulkner Award—recently passed away at the age of 85. Read More ›

    Bloom’s Literature: Catch Up on the Classics This Summer

    Bloom’s Literature makes it easy to stay connected to literature during the summer. Whether your students are reading for pleasure or for summer courses, point them to the Literary Classics eBook shelf, where they can access the full contents of more than 800 classic works of literature selected from Bloom’s Literary Canon—including the essential works of the most important authors in world history and literature. Read More ›

    Bloom’s Literature: SIIA Education Technology CODiE Award Finalist!

    Bloom’s Literature was named a 2018 SIIA CODiE Award finalist in the “Best Source for Reference or Education Resources” category. Finalists represent applications, products, and services from developers of educational software, digital content, online learning services, and related technologies across the PreK–20 sector. Read More ›

    Bloom’s Literature: BESSIE Winner!

    Infobase is very pleased to announce that Bloom’s Literature has won The ComputED Gazette’s 24th Annual Best Educational Software Awards (BESSIES) in the “Post-Secondary English Literature Website” category. Read More ›

    Bloom’s Literature: New Shakespeare Performance Videos and More

    New videos have been added to Bloom’s Literature, including profiles of legendary writers and interviews with them, plus productions of the world-renowned Stratford Festival. Read More ›

    Bloom’s Literature: 2017 Year in Review—Updates and More

    Bloom’s Literature has been updated and enhanced throughout the past year, increasing the educational value of this award-winning resource. Read More ›

    Bloom’s Literature: Spotlight on Ursula K. Le Guin

    American science fiction author Ursula K. Le Guin recently passed away at the age of 88. Literary critic Harold Bloom once said of Le Guin that she “raised fantasy into high literature” and that “no one else now among us matches her at rendering freely ‘that image of the thing I cannot see.’ ” If your patrons have expressed interest in exploring Le Guin’s works, Bloom’s Literature can lend insight, context, and background. Read More ›

    Bloom’s Literature: New Videos Added

    Infobase is pleased to announce that new videos have been added to Bloom’s Literature, including Olivier’s As You Like It, a classic full-length adaptation of Shakespeare’s comedy from 1936, starring Sir Laurence Olivier as Orlando. Read More ›

    Bloom’s Literature: Spotlight on Kazuo Ishiguro

    British novelist Kazuo Ishiguro just won 2017’s Nobel Prize in Literature. If your patrons have expressed interest in exploring Ishiguro’s works, Bloom’s Literature can lend insight, context, and background. Read More ›

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