I haven’t yet seen any official announcement from the AAA about the change,1 but if you now click on the “Login to use AnthroSource now” link from the top of the AAA website, you will get directed to this glorious webpage. Those who know me will be surprised to learn that I am not being the slightest bit ironic when I say the page is glorious. It truly is. Not only does it look great, but at long last searching through the back catalog of AAA journals is simple and easy. Even better, when you find something you can quickly access the content you are looking for without any hassles. If you are an AAA member you will have access to that content as part of your membership fee and won’t have to use your school’s VPN to get the content you want. Bravo to Wiley and AAA for pulling this off, it really should make AAA membership that much more attractive for everyone.
Having said that, I probably won’t be using this portal for my own research purposes. The first reason for this is that AnthroSource limits you to just two search options: you can search an individual journal, or you can through the entire catalog of all AAA journals. I almost never want to conduct either of these searches. The AAA archive is great, but I prefer to conduct narrower searches. For instance I might want to exclude archaeology journals, and journals focusing on Latin America and Europe, without confining myself to just one journal. Secondly, there are a number of Wiley anthropology journals not included in the AAA’s catalog that I would like to search along with the other cultural anthropology journals. These include: Anthropology Today, The Australian Journal of Anthropology, the Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute, Oceania, and Social Anthropology. Third, AnthroSource doesn’t currently offer an advanced search interface. That means you can’t limit the date range for searches or restrict your keyword search to the abstract or title of articles, etc.
Fortunately, it is already possible to conduct such a search via Wiley’s Advanced Search Page. All you have to do is list the titles of journals in quotes, separated by the word “OR” and select “Publication Titles” from the drop down menu. For instance, you could copy the entire block of text below and paste it in the “Publication Titles” field to search six of the leading anthropology journals on Wiley, including two that aren’t in AnthroSource:
“American Anthropologist” OR “American Ethnologist” OR “Anthropology Today” OR “The Australian Journal of Anthropology” OR “Cultural Anthropology” OR “Journal of Linguistic Anthropology” OR “Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute”
You can add additional titles if you like, or replace this with your own list of journals – just be sure that the title matches how the journal is listed in the Wiley database. If there is an upper limit to the number of journals you can list in a single search, I’ve not yet encountered it. If you are logged in you can save your searches from the advanced search screen, which not only saves you time, but also allows you to create “search alerts.” Neither of these features are currently available for AnthroSource. Unfortunately, once you find what you are looking for this way, even if you are logged in to AnthroSource, the advanced search interface won’t unlock AAA content for you. If your institution doesn’t offer access to Wiley content you may find yourself having to search for it again via AnthroSource in order to get the PDF.
I still dream of a single search engine that will search all my favorite Anthropology journals (and only those journals), no matter whether they are on Wiley, JSTOR, or somewhere else. For instance, I’d love to add Current Anthropology and HAU to the above search, but there is currently no way (that I know of) to do this as a single search. Still, I think such narrow disciplinary searches can yield important results that you might not find on Google Scholar. For this reason I’m glad to see AnthroSource getting a shiny new look, even if I won’t be using it.
- There is an announcement on the site from before AnthroSource went live, but nothing (that I can find) actually announcing the launch. UPDATE: An email announcement went out the day after I posted this. (This kind of thing happens to me a lot, living in a time zone that is twelve hours ahead of the US.) ↩