Falcon Library

Dan Sayers


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March 2, 2018

Rites of Passage Research

The best advice I can give you while researching your rite of passage is to not get discouraged if you don't find information right away. There's good information on every topic out there. You just have to keep going until you find it. 

If your rite of passage has a unique spelling, such as Seijin-no-Hi, Kinalda, Enkipaata, Quinceanera, Rumspringa, etc., you can probably get away with just searching the term. 

Choose your search terms wisely. For search terms that do not have unique spellings, I would search the culture/location along with the rite of passage and any other words that could be helpful, such as tradition or celebration. 

Using a Culture/Location, you might search Confirmation and Catholic or Catholicism. Catholicism is a similar term that might get you extra results. 

Using a rite of passage example, you might search "Sweet 16" or "Sweet Sixteen" or "Sixteenth Birthday" in your search box to make sure you're getting the best results for your searches about that particular rite of passage. 

Sometimes it's helpful to search the words "rite of passage" along with synonyms. For instance, if you search high school graduation, chances are you'll find links to businesses trying to sell you graduation gifts and party supplies and also a lot of news articles on how graduation changed due to Covid procedures. With high school graduation, I would search the term along with "rite of passage" and tradition and ceremony and custom. This search is going to be super long. In the search box, I would type high school graduation and history or rite of passage or coming of age or tradition or ceremony or custom. I would also do this with the Sweet 16 example above. 

I would start off with academic resources like the ones on Utah's Online Library. World Book Online has great resources on Bar Mitzvah, Bat Mitzvah, and Catechism. Gale Reference Collection (In Context High School) can be helpful for information about the Sunrise Ceremony, Cow Jumping, and Land Diving. 

Refseek.com and Sweetsearch.com are great academic search engines that try to filter out non-scholarly resources. I would consider searching there next if Utah's Online Library doesn't have anything. 

If all else fails, try Google. 

Wikipedia can be edited by anyone, and many times the authors of articles are very intelligent people who use and cite reliable sources. While I would never use Wikipedia as a source, you can look at the sources cited in Wikipedia and click on their links if you find the information is trustworthy. This is called mining a source because you're looking at the ideas used to create the article and digging deeper for information. 

Good luck finding great info! See me in the library if you need help.