The default search for most databases is Keyword. If you try doing a keyword and get way too many results, go back and change the search field to title or subject. Subject terms are usually a "controlled vocabulary" so there is a limited set of terms used. But if you use keyword/full-text searching you need to think about all the alternatives.
death OR dying OR Funeral
Sometimes you can use a truncation * to search for the various endings of a word.
lonel* will search for lonely OR Loneliness
IN BAS (Bibliography of Asian Studies) don't bother using the subject field. It only covers very broad categories like Japan -- Literature -- Fiction -- Studies & Criticism. Instead leave it as "entire record" To find out if we have the item you need, first you need to determine if it is a chapter in a book or an article in a journal. To do this - look at the Citation field. If it starts with In ... it means that the thing you want is a chapter in a book. Copy the title listed in the Citation field and paste it into the library catalog to see if we have it. If the Citation field lists a title and volume,issue numbers, then it is a journal. Click on the Find it @ your library button to see if we have it online or in print or if you need to request it through interlibrary loan.
IN JSTOR - you can limit the number of results by using the Advanced Search feature and selecting only Item Type Article. You can further limit it by Discipline if you need to (like you don't want any scientific articles). Also in JSTOR remember that some of the citations are for "external content" and the link may take you to Project Muse or another database.