Skip to Main Content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.

Comparative Literature

Searching in Catalogs

Browsing By Call Number Area

When you have located a book whose call number you retrieved from a CLIO search, don't leave the stacks just yet! Spend some time browsing around the book you have found---you may find other titles that are relevant to your research.


Most of the books in Barnard and Columbia's collections are organized by the Library of Congress Classification System. The call numbers for books begin with a letter or pair of letters, and these letters---along with the numbers that follow---correspond with the books' assigned subject headings. Getting familiar with the Library of Congress Classification System can be helpful as you browse the stacks.


Check out the Library of Congress Classification Outline for more information on the subject areas your call numbers correspond to. 

Accessing Books and/or Book Chapters Online

Ebooks and ebook chapters

To limit your search in the CLIO Catalog to ebooks, select the "Online" option in the Format box on the left side of the results screen:

When you click on a link to access an ebook, please note that you might be prompted to log in with your UNI and password. Once you do this, you should be able to view your ebook!

Look out for options to download portions of the text (like chapters, or pages in a specified range). Not all ebook formats include this option, but many do. 


Scanned books available to read online via HathiTrust

Many books (and even some periodicals) that are normally available only in print, can now be read online via Columbia Libraries, in a partnership with the HathiTrust Digital Library. These books are not visible as "online" resources or ebooks in the catalog. Instead, they can be found by limiting your search results by Location, and selecting HathiTrust ETAS:


To read a scanned text online via HathiTrust, you will need to:

  • Click on the link reading "Log in for temporary access."
  • Most likely, you will be prompted to then enter your UNI and password.
  • Scroll to the bottom of the page and click on the "Temporary Access" link.
  • Click on the "Check out" button at the top of the next screen to virtually "check out" the text to read for an hour (with automatic renewal if you are still reading after an hour). 

Keep in mind: You won't be able to download chapters easily from the reader. For saving individual pages, you might wish to use the screen capture feature on your device. 


Using Interlibrary Loan to Request a Scan of a Book Chapter

In some cases, you might wish to access a chapter from a book that is not available to read digitally. To do this, you can make use of Interlibrary Loan. You'll need to know in advance the page numbers you wish to access. 

From the CLIO Catalog, you can access the "Scan" option in the box on the right hand side of the item record. 

Interlibrary Loan: This page will take you directly to the ILL form (for when you want to bypass CLIO). You can use the form to request a digital scan of a book chapter or article, as long as you have the basic information (title/author of source, page numbers). You can do this regardless of whether Columbia has a book in its collections.