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Commonwealth Studies: News resources

Findng News sources

The Bodleian libraries provide access to a wide range of current and historical news sources for African Studies. Key printed African Newspapers including the Cape Times, East African Standard, and the Rhodesia Herald are held in the Weston Library.  Search SOLO, Oxford Libraries' catalogue, to locate.

All online resources are listed on OxLIP+ under 'newspapers'. The largest full-text databases are Nexis UK and Factiva. Both databases include the text (but not pictures or formatting) of a vast range of newspapers and other news sources from across the world.

Historical newspapers include the Times Digital Archive, New York Times Archive, the Guardian and Observer newspapers and the Economist Archive

BBC World Monitoring (available here or via Nexis UK) transcribes reports from radio, television, news agencies, press and new media in over 150 countries, in over 100 languages, providing a distinctive foreign news and information service from open sources.

FBIS (Foreign Broadcast Information Service) has been the United States' principal record of political and historical open source intelligence for nearly 70 years.

Guide: Nexis UK

Nexis UK (also known as Lexis Nexis) contains the text of news stories from over 20,000 sources including newspapers, news wires, magazines, and websites.

The front page allows for general searching of news sources by country, language, or specific sources such as UK broadsheets. Searching should usually be restricted by date. There is also some subject and region searching although this is not always successful. 

The countries option button under the search tab gives you access to BBC Monitoring Reports.

The sources tab allows you to select specific sources to search by browsing country, subject or language folders or by searching for a specific title.


The Foreign Broadcast Information Service (FBIS) Daily Report has been the United States' principal record of political and historical open source intelligence for nearly 70 years.

FBIS Daily Reports, 1974–1996 consist of translated broadcasts, news agency transmissions, newspapers, periodicals, and government statements from nations around the globe. These media sources were monitored in their languages of origin, translated into English, and issued by an agency of the US government.  Oxford has access is to the following for Africa:

Sub-Saharan Africa, 1974–1980 and Africa, 1987–1996