Like Nailing Jell-O to a Wall: The Maintenance of Library of Congress Subject Headings – November 15, 2016

Have you ever wanted to know how Library of Congress Subject Headings is maintained? Has the recent media spotlight on LCSH caused you to wonder about culturally or politically sensitive subject headings? If so, please join the New York Technical Services Librarians for a presentation by Janis L. Young, a senior cataloging policy specialist at the Library of Congress, whose job is to keep LCSH up to date.

After a brief non-technical discussion of LCa��s procedures for adding and revising headings, Ms. Young will relate anecdotes that illustrate the pleasures and challenges of maintaining the most widely used subject vocabulary in the world. Some of those challenges are due to internal factors, such as decisions and policies that were made decades ago but continue to have an impact today. Others are external to LCSH itself, including the perpetual evolution of the English language and the constantly shifting political and cultural climate, both of which progress at breakneck speed in todaya��s fast-paced digital environment.

About the Presenter

Janis L. Young is a senior cataloging policy specialist in the Library of Congressa�� Policy and Standards Division (PSD). She maintains LC subject headings and classification numbers and is the editor of both the Subject Headings Manual and the Classification and Shelflisting Manual. She is also the coordinator of LCa��s projects to develop genre/form, medium of performance, and demographic group terms. Ms. Young serves as LCa��s liaison to several ALA committees and is a past member of the Standing Committee of IFLAa��s Classification and Indexing Section, and has written articles for the Encyclopedia of Library and Information Sciences and Cataloging & Classification Quarterly.


The New York Public Library – Stephen A. Schwarzman Building Margaret Liebman Berger Forum, Room 227 476 Fifth Avenue (at 42nd Street), New York, NY 10018


Tuesday, November 15, 2016 5:00 a�� 7:45 PM (Refreshments: 5:00-6:00 PM; Program: 6:00-7:45 PM)

To Attend

Registration is required.

About John Pell

John Pell is an assistant professor and librarian at Hunter College in New York City.

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