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31 March 2008 @ 04:32 pm
Library of Congress  
The book I am reading has the following card-catalog subject heading classifications:

1. Conduct of life - Fiction
2. Interpersonal Relationships - Fiction
3. Self-perception - Fiction

Suddenly, I am on fire to read about what it takes to introduce a new classification into the Library of Congress. Can a single book incite one? Or do there have to be X number of books that qualify? Does it go before a committee?

Oh, Library Science and Book Geek friends, can you enlighten me?

I love that I live in a world where somebody who is not me or anyone I know came up with "Conduct of life" and "Self-perception" as relevant fiction classifications. The social anthropologist in me just went "yum".
 
 
 
To Mega Thereminrwx on April 1st, 2008 12:05 am (UTC)
search google for AACR2. the full details are in that series of books.

Artemis Jones: Librarianrimrunner on April 1st, 2008 12:16 am (UTC)
You know, I still HAVE an AACR2 around here, somewhere. Damned if I could tell you where, though. I haven't used it since 531.
To Mega Thereminrwx on April 1st, 2008 12:34 am (UTC)
i recommend asking the indexing spiders.

they will be in the webs.
To Mega Thereminrwx on April 1st, 2008 12:06 am (UTC)
http://catdir.loc.gov/catdir/pcc/saco/saco.html <-- also read around here and search google for links to a guy named 'Sandy Berman'.
Kburgunder on April 1st, 2008 03:38 am (UTC)
Ack, that web site overwhelmed me. Not knowing where to start, I just compulsively closed it. Apparently I'm not quite fascinated enough to do copious amounts of delving ;) (One of the down sides of being a molasses slow reader ... I delve at my peril)
To Mega Thereminrwx on April 1st, 2008 12:07 am (UTC)
(also, technically, those are Library of Congress Subject Headings (LCSH)), mostly telling you this to save time interpreting this material.
Kburgunder on April 1st, 2008 03:38 am (UTC)
Thank you!
Artemis Jones: Librarianrimrunner on April 1st, 2008 12:15 am (UTC)
Those look like they're LC subject headings; LC classification is a separate but related system that generates call numbers.

I think the guidelines are in the LC Subject Cataloging Manual, which I don't have (I'm not a cataloger). Proposals for new headings are supposed to include at least one source citation justifying the proposal, so in theory one book could do it; however, proposers are encouraged to include more than one citation.

Cataloging is governed by the Cataloging Directorate (yes, really!) and new/updated subject headings are posted every week. That said, they don't really tend to get updated all that fast, because if LC changes something, everything using LC has to change too or be out of date. Some of the headings related to computing and the Internet are especially entertaining.
Kburgunder on April 1st, 2008 03:38 am (UTC)
Sweet! Thank you.