Film and Television: Reference Works


Image Credit: Acrobats/entertainers, n.d. The Bill Douglas Cinema Museum. Available from Victorian Popular Culture. Adam Matthew.



Abel, Richard. Encyclopedia of Early Cinema. New York: Routledge, 2005.
This comprehensive work, international in scope, provides coverage of cinema from its beginnings through the first quarter of the 20th century. 

Grant, Barry Keith, ed. Schirmer Encyclopedia of Film. New York: Schirmer Reference, 2007. 
The digital edition of this four-volume work is available through the Gale Virtual Reference Library. The encyclopedia provides a comprehensive and accessible introduction to film and film studies. Also included are more than 230 career profiles. 

Harpole, Charles, ed. History of the American Cinema. New York: Scribner, 1990–2000.
Chronicles the emergence of American cinema through the 1980s. 

Pendergast, Tom, and Sara Pendergast, eds. The St. James Encyclopedia of Popular Culture. Detroit: St. James, 2000. 
Digital edition available through the Gale Virtual Reference Library. The encyclopedia provides a comprehensive and scholarly overview of popular culture in the 20th century. Major topics include film and television.

Women Film Pioneers Project 
"The Women Film Pioneers Project is a digital publication and resource that advances research on the hundreds of women who worked behind the scenes during the silent era." The resource includes short career profiles and overview essays. 



Encyclopedia of Dance
Articles on all aspects of dance, including theatrical, ritual, dance-drama, folk, traditional, ethnic, and social dance.

Encyclopedia of Television
Includes 1,000 original essays from more than 250 contributors and examines specific programs and people, historic moments and trends, major policy disputes and much more.

Film Language Glossary
Multimedia definitions of essential film studies terms.

Gale Virtual Reference
History of the American Cinema is now available electronically through the Gale Virtual Reference Collection. This essential resource, also available in print, documents American film history decade by decade currently through the 1980s. In addition, Gale Virtual Reference includes The Columbia Companion to American History on Film: How the Movies Have Portrayed the Past, International Dictionary of Films and Filmmakers, Movies Made for Television: 1964-2004, and Schirmer Encyclopedia of Film.

Glossary of Film Terms
Written and designed for the web by Joel Schlemowitz. Definitions of film terms.

International Dictionary of Films and Filmmakers
Comprehensive resource provides thorough coverage of films and filmmakers.

Oxford Encyclopedia of Theatre and Performance
Provides information about theater and performance from ancient Greece to the present.

Oxford English Dictionary
The OED.

Oxford Reference Online
Searchable full-text of about 100 language dictionaries and reference books published by Oxford University Press. See section "Performing Arts".