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Secondary Sources for Theology: Introduction

What are Secondary Sources?

Secondary sources are works that analyze, assess, or interpret a historical event, era, or phenomenon. Secondary sources often offer a review or critique of a Primary source. Secondary sources are generally written well after the advent of the Primary source.

Secondary sources do not offer new evidence.

Examples of Secondary sources include academic books, journal articles, reviews, conference proceedings, dissertations, and class lectures.

Why are Secondary Sources Important?

Secondary sources  are necessary to your research and writing because they

  1. help you find core or foundational sources that are relevant to your research, aka Primary Sources,
  2. help you find, evaluate, contextualize primary sources,
  3. help you refine your research questions,
  4. allow you to engage with the scholarly conversation around your topic,
  5. keep up with current research,
  6. introduce other points of view, and
  7. provide models for your own research and analysis.