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Library Congress Subject Headings

Library Congress Subject Headings

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Transcript

  • 1. Library of Congress Subject Headings (LCSH) Maura Walsh Adeleine Whitman Jessica Wilson Tania Wisotzke Erin Wolfe
  • 2. Library of Congress (LC)
    • De facto National Library
    • Began as Legislative Library in 1800
    • Collections totaling more than 100 million items
    • Librarian of Congress appointed by President (now James H. Billington)
    • Serves as:
      • research library for Congress
      • US copyright center
      • Library for all three branches of government
      • Largest public library
      • Materials in over 450 languages
  • 3. LC Jefferson Building
  • 4. History of LCSH Timeline
    • 1897 – LC moves to new Thomas Jefferson Building
    • 1898 – LC introduces dictionary catalog; first subject headings from ALA list
    • 1902 – LC begins Card Distribution Service
  • 5. LCSH Timeline
    • 1909 to 1914 – LC publishes Subject Headings Used in the Dictionary Catalogues of the Library of Congress
    • 1975 – 8 th edition (2 volumes) published under title Library of Congress Headings
  • 6. LCSH Timeline
    • 1992 – Subject Authority Control Program (SACO) established
    • 1998 – LCSH ’s 100 th Anniversary http://www.loc.gov/loc/lcib/9808/lcsh-cel.html
    • 2007 – 30 th edition of LCSH published; 5 volumes contain over 280,000 subject headings
  • 7. LCSH - The Big Red Books
  • 8. What is the LCSH?
    • Controlled vocabulary
      • access points to bibliographic records
      • standardized records for libraries and databases
      • the most widely used subject access system in the world
  • 9. What is the LCSH? (cont)
    • A tool to facilitate finding similar items
    • Concise, precise, and specific
      • Answers the question:
        • “What is this item about?”
  • 10. A stairway in the Great Hall of the Library of Congress, Thomas Jefferson Building
  • 11. Who and Why?
    • Libraries
      • standardization
    • Catalogers and Indexers
      • Categorization of materials
    • Researchers
      • all materials on a topic (BT, NT, UF)
    • Patrons
      • way to search (cross-referencing)
  • 12. LCSH Construction
    • Provides three relational directions between terms (thesaurus format):
      • Equivalence (USE/UF)
      • Hierarchical (BT, NT)
      • Associative (RT, SA)
  • 13. LCSH Construction (cont)
    • Main heading
      • topical
      • form or genre
      • names
        • personal, corporate, geographic
  • 14. LCSH Construction (cont)
    • Subdivisions
      • topical
      • form or document type
      • chronological
      • geographical
  • 15. LCSH Construction (cont)
    • Free-floating subdivisions
    • Pattern headings
  • 16. LCSH Construction (cont)
    • Syntax and form can vary greatly
    • Highly ordered and precise, but...
      • User vs. consistency principles
      • Stability principle
  • 17. Inside the Library
  • 18. Issues
    • Difficult to locate information
    • No natural-language searches
    • No browsing
    • Slow to add/change headings
    • Adaptability/Flexibility
    • Bias reflected in headings
  • 19. LCSH Bias
    • Cutter's Rules
    • Literary Warrant
    • National and international reinforcement of U.S. Status quo
    • Gender/Culture/…
  • 20. Library of Congress Reading Room
  • 21. LCSH as Thesaurus
    • Definition of thesaurus
      • a list of words or group of words that can be used as subject headings or descriptors in a particular database, catalog, or index. …
    • Controversy over hierarchy
  • 22. LCSH across languages
  • 23. LCSH Across Languages
    • LCSH becoming internationalized
      • Positive implications
    • -global access
    • -multilingual access
      • Negative implications
    • -English centric
    • -Underrepresentation
    • -SHs lacking equivilancy
  • 24. LCSH in Online Catalogs Progress Adeleine, can you fill this in?
  • 25. Future of LCSH?
    • Possibilities
      • Social collaboration
      • Tagging/folksonomies (PennTags)
      • Combination LCSH
      • Wiki use in libraries (Ohio U. library)
      • Natural language processing
      • Ontologies
      • Faceted Navigation