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Primary Sources

Learn about primary sources and discover a wealth of sources in UH Special Collections and around the world.


Secondary sources are works synthesizing and/or commenting on primary and/or other secondary sources. Secondary sources, which are often works of scholarship, are differentiated from primary sources by the element of critical synthesis, analysis, or commentary.

Sometimes a work can be a primary source for one research question, but a secondary source for another.

Source: Guidelines for Primary Source Literacy