Gathering information about cultures, especially those different from your own, requires care and discernment. Every culture has practices and nuances that are hard to understand from the outside. Resources that attempt to define a culture may not capture those nuances.
Your best culture research will require using multiple types of resources and finding the similarities and differences between them. Listed below are the various encyclopedias or reference resources that house a wide variety of cultural information - but they are not the only resources you should use.
Remember to also consult books, articles, and the open internet.
General Search Tools
AU Library Search
Use this search box to browse the print and digital items the library has access to across disciplines.
Use the country comparison tool to rate countries on six cultural characteristics: power distance, individualism, masculinity, uncertainty avoidance, long-term orientation, & indulgence.
Country Profiles with Culture Description
A to Z International database attempts to pull information about countries all over the world to explain their cultures and customs. You may find these profiles helpful, but note that like all encyclopedic information, there might be holes, reductions, and inaccuracies.
Country cultural database featuring information on 175 countries including general culture and society, business, negotiations, women in culture and in business, greetings and courtesy, music, education, and a language video dictionary.
Oxford Handbooks Online provides introductions and a critical survey of the current state of scholarship on major topics. The handbooks date from 2004 to present. Subject areas include Criminal Justice, Law, Music, Political Science, History, Religion, Psychology, Literature and Classical Studies.
The sources that Gale Virtual Reference Library offers in eBook format include multi-volume encyclopedias, biographical collections, business plan handbooks, company history compilations, and specialized reference sources. Subjects covered include Arts, Biography, Business, Education, Environment, History, Law, Literature, Multicultural Studies, Nation and World, Religion, Science, and Social Science.