If you are hitting a paywall when trying to read an article...
Note the difference between peer-reviewed literature (in Sociological Abstracts, for instance) and working papers (NBER). Working papers are often timely and valid to use, but haven't gone through formal peer review.
Web of Science is good for identifying and ranking key journals and highly-cited articles in any field or subfield of the social sciences.
You could also find a journal that's just perfect for your topic. Search our list of e-journals.
See how others have done it: search for dissertations and theses below.