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Literature Online Premium (LION): Content Description

A guide to all aspects of Literature Online including content, searching, and viewing results

LION's Canon Complete Contents

Primary Sources (over 350,000 works)

Texts by genre

  • Poetry (10239 volumes by 2886 authors)
  • Drama (7957 volumes by 1625 authors)
  • Prose (2241 volumes by 718 authors)

Literary Works in Journals

  • Poetry and Prose from Literature Online journals, 1990-present (25862 works by 3945 authors)

Primary Texts by Period

  • 600-1500: Anglo-Saxon and Medieval Literature
  • 1500-1660: Renaissance Literature
  • 1607-1785: American Colonial and British Neoclassical Literature
  • 1765-1837: Romantic and Early American Literature
  • 1830-1900: Victorian Literature and American Romanticism/Realism
  • 1900-present: Twentieth-Century Literature
  • National and Regional Literatures (Ireland, Scotland, Wales, Africa, South Asia, Australia, Canada)
  • Major Anthologies of English Poetry (6 volumes)


  • Annual Bibliography of English Language and Literature (search ABELL)
    contains over 880,000 citations for scholarly books, articles and reviews in the field of English studies, from 1920 to the present.
  • MLA International Bibliography (search MLAIB)
    contains more than 2 million records for books and articles published on modern languages, literatures, folklore, and linguistics.
  • Full-Text Journals (426 journals, 379311 articles)
  • New Essays on the American Novel (Cambridge University Press) (38 volumes, 251 essays)
  • Cambridge Companions to Literature (Cambridge University Press) (220 volumes, 3351 essays)


  • Reference Works (27 volumes)
  • Biographies (for 6881 authors)
  • Bibliographies (for 1540 authors)
  • KnowledgeNotesTM Student Guides (230 articles)

Video and Audio

  • Poets on Screen (879 clips)
  • Shakespeare Audio Plays (38 plays)
  • Poetry Archive (921 poems)

All above figures current as of January 2018

World Literature Collection

The world of Literature mapped in all its diversity and depth – more than 70,000 texts by authors of over 65 nationalities from Germany to Jamaica and Venezuela to Vietnam – the non-Anglophone literary canon assembled for the first time online.

Build upon the 1,000 years of established Anglophone literary tradition with works in Spanish, French, Dutch and Papiamento (to name a few) including texts in native languages and frequently in English for easy analysis.

The collection provides an exciting look at the interplay of literary traditions where influences as disparate as the Mahabharata and Charles Dickens are evident in the same piece, such as The Tamarind Tree, by Romen Basu. Postmodern literary techniques help tell ancient stories, and contemporary political parables are teased out of classic epics from the oral tradition. Some authors use formal English, while others play with the boundaries of language, merging English prefixes with local words or phrases, or writing English in the cadences of local languages.


Rich in sociological and historical significance, the literary texts in this collection are the writings of place, gender, and race. Students and scholars can explore works that have previously not been available, such as:

  • Find the origins of Anglophone literary tropes in the complete writings of Goethe, Schiller, Cervantes or de Vega.
  • Explore never-before-published works of various teatros created in the late 1960s and early 1970s, such as El Teatro Desengaño del Pueblo and El Teatro Chicano de Austin, along with never-before-heard audio tapes.
  • Discover Indian writer and composer Bankim Chandra Chatterjee’s national song in translation alongside his novel Rajmohan’s Wife (1864); the first novel in English published by an Indian, a host of reference and critical articles and works of contemporaries such as Tagore.

Portrait of Indian writer Chandra Chatterjee   Mexican american writer Josephina Niggli Chinese American writer Minfong Ho     Portrait of M. de Cervantes by El Greco

Black Writing Collection

The most inclusive library of Black writing ever assembled: over 70,000 poems, plays, prose works, ephemera, and fugitive texts by over 4,000 authors from more than 50 countries. These works represent the most important as well as the most forgotten voices. Available on the Literature Online platform for the first time, the collection encompasses over 500,000 pages of rare, out-of-print and in-demand works to explore every facet of the African, Caribbean and African Diasporic experience from the 18th century to the present day.

The Black Writing Collection permits unprecedented access to hundreds of thousands of unheard Black voices from around the world.With more modules added each year, the Collection only gets more indispensable.


As literary studies grows increasingly interdisciplinary and with researchers needing to explore more consistently beyond the boundaries of traditional sources, Black Writing offers unprecedented opportunities to improve research with the inclusion of rare and ephemeral voices.

  • Analyse the earliest expressions of Black writers from influential periodicals such as The Afro-American right up to the present day.
  • Discover Jamaica’s first Poet Laureate Thomas MacDermot’s Becka’s Buckra Baby (1904), considered to mark the beginning of modern Caribbean writing, and access his complete works in one place for the first time.
  • Appreciate lesser known figures in the Harlem Renaissance movement such as Georgia Douglas Johnson and Nella Larsen.
  • Understand the complex development of global black feminism through works by Maya Angelou, Sonia Sanchez and Bessie Head
  • Explore the origins and cultural influences of fables and folktales from Africa and the African diaspora.

Nella Larsen  Thomas McDermot    Georgia Douglas Johnson  Langston Hughes