As always — check out the full approved list, and be sure to read through the newest tentative list and to send feedback to LC! Your feedback matters, as PSD says:

“Each Tentative List includes an email address to which comments on the proposals may be submitted. PSD accepts comments from LC and SACO catalogers, other library and archive professionals, lawmakers, and members of the general public. The comment period lasts approximately one month, beginning with the publication of the Tentative List and continuing until the closing date indicated on the list.”

The following are newly approved headings which I proposed [or canceled LCSH in favor of NARs]

  • Gender nonconformity [Replacing Transgenderism]
  • Cross-dressers [Replacing Transvestites and removing the BT to Transgender people]]
  • Cross-dressing [Replacing Transvestitism]
  • Female impersonators  [Removing the BT to Transgender people]
  • Male impersonators [Removing the BT to Transgender people]
  • Dwarfs (Persons) [Split from Dwarfs]
  • Dwarfs (Folklore) [Split from Dwarfs]
  • Anteus (Greek mythology) [Canceled in favor of NAR]
  • Argos (Greek mythology) [Canceled in favor of NAR]
  • Calydonian boar (Greek mythology) [Canceled in favor of NAR]
  • Eeyore (Fictitious character) [Canceled in favor of NAR]
  • Hawkgirl (Fictitious character) [Canceled in favor of NAR]
  • Sawyer, Tom (Fictitious character) [Canceled in favor of NAR]
  • Unplanned pregnancy
  • Furry fandom (Subculture)
  • Predators (Fictitious characters : Dark Hose Comics[Replacing Predator (Fictitious character : Dark Horse Comics]
  • Xenomorphs (Fictitious characters)

Normally this where I say “Onto the headings!” but I want to pause for a moment to reflect and say some stuff.

This is the basically the last list where I have significant headings to be evaluated. Next month are a few strays, and maybe the month after that will be a revise and resubmit heading, but this is the last big haul.

As many of you know, I’ve started a new position at the Library of Congress. As someone who worked at an academic library with a diverse set of materials to be cataloged and a wide collection policy, I was able to propose a broad number of headings and changes based on the materials that crossed my desk and operated with very little supervision in that capacity. I was the only member of my institution making subject proposals and nobody except the PSD itself had oversight or comments on my work.

Now I’m working exclusively with audio-visual materials, and with colleagues and supervisors who have all made proposals and understand the process [the LCGFT audio visual terms  was co-developed by some of new colleagues!] I don’t imagine I’ll be encountering the variety of material that I did before to engender so many proposals nor have the free reign as an Official LC Cataloger to cause as much trouble with changes. [Speculation on my part]

I’m not throwing in the towel, nor giving up the ghost! I still believe in a more inclusive and up-to-date LCSH. This is where you come in. Do you have a heading you need in your work but you just don’t know how to propose it? Is there a change you’ve wanted to see to LCSH? Maybe I can help, let’s talk.

And now, onto the headings!

 A (The letter)

Letter People learning tool, Miss A
We had Letter People in my kindergarten, this is Miss Achoo


Blanching (Cooking)

This recipe calls for blanched brains, yum!


Chaps (Clothing)

remember, ALL chaps are assless


Children of assisted reproductive technology

Comedy Schwarzenegger was my favorite Schwarzenegger


Energy bars (Snack foods)

Ties nicely with the last one


Jesus Christ–Stature



Lucha libre

El Santo! Luchador magnigico!


Memory consolidation

I guess like, some version of this?



A fish that can kinda breathe air? CHECKMATE, EVOLUTION!



if the feedback gets too bad, he’ll prolly get a psychic nosebleed


Parent and child in motion pictures

Spooooooiler alert [Sarah Snook is amazing in this tho]

Solitude in popular culture

Without Silent Running, there’d be no MST3K


Women cricket players

I bet she totally stuck that wicket.

One Chapter Ends

I was offered a position at Brandeis University when I was about a month shy of graduation from Simmons School of Library and Information Science. I asked them if I could wait until I formally completed all my coursework before beginning the new job. They were amenable to that. [Neither of us knew I’d spend the first three weeks of my job in the hospital with pancreatitis tho]

It’s not easy for catalogers to find jobs right out of school, particularly without having to move. I know that I’m very fortunate and privileged to have done so. In some ways it seems like Brandeis was an inevitability for me. My father attended Brandeis as an undergrad in the 70s, while my sabba both got his PhD there and taught. Years later I end up being their Hebrew cataloger. I never thought I’d be using my Hebrew knowledge in my professional career — but the timing of the position vacancy and my availability was perfect.

Let me also point out that I worked for a year or so at an unpaid cataloging internship. Having real-world [read here: non-classroom] cataloging experience on my resume gave me an immediate leg-up on the people who couldn’t afford to accept unpaid work.
Two years and two months later, how have I grown? What did I learn? What’s next?


The first and foremost thing is that the classroom is wonderful, but it’s not the same as cataloging on the job. For one thing, there’s an ILS. I’d worked with Voyager at Emerson [though only briefly briefly in the cataloging module] and with Evergreen at the State Library of Massachusetts, but now I was working on Alma, several months after a data migration from Aleph. ILSes are weird and persnickety and tetchy and do not display all the beautiful data that you’ve entered into them. There was a frustration to overcome in the first few months — knowing that the complex 77X relationships I was entering into records would not be displayed to the public, nor would any differentiation between genre/form and subject be displayed, despite that being such an important part of my classroom training.


I hadn’t joined any professional organizations until I started at Brandeis. I felt that as a student I didn’t have anything to contribute to the larger conversation. Now of course I recognize that that was incorrect, and I love hearing from students and think we need to hear from them even more. But that’s where my head was at the time. I joined ALA [with ALCTS as a division] and added on GLBTRT and SRRT. I wanted to support the work that those two round tables were doing, so tossing a couple more bucks their way each year seemed like a good way to do that. I also joined NELA [New England Library Association], MLA [Massachusetts Library Association], and AJL [Association of Jewish Libraries]. My very first conference was right around the corner in October — a NELA conference in Dover, NH. I was slightly terrified at the idea of meeting all these new people and being expected to schmooze and dazzle. But it was totally fine! Smallish for my first conference, and turned out to be a lot less scary than I’d expected. I even made a new twitter friend!


The very next year ALA Midwinter was in Boston which was perfect for my first foray into national conferences. I was able to stay at my own house, eat my own breakfast and/or dinners if I wanted and just attend the conference during the day. I met loads of people from twitter, and saw from afar loads more whose work I’d read, or whose knowledge on list serv posts I admired.


It was at Brandeis that I first became involved in the NACO/SACO programs, first through the Judaica/Hebraica funnels and then as a full member of both. This work I found immensely rewarding. There was a joy and power in knowing that I’d created the record, and filled it with good controlled data which could represent a person/place/corporate body or work throughout library-dom. When it came to subjects, I was elated to be able to contribute to a body as vast and as storied as LCSH. I tentatively began doing some work on changing or updating headings as well as filling in gaps.



I also became more active on twitter during my time at Brandeis, finding new peers to collaborate with and bounce ideas off of. It was also during this period that I started this very blog. Blogging and twitter has led to more development opportunities than I could’ve imagined. Writing about my Emflix project here led to me writing a journal article about the same project in Code4Lib. Writing about a thought I had regarding faceting people terms in LCSH led to a presentation at the ALA conference in Orlando in 2016.


I want to talk about that presentation for a moment. I have deep regrets about certain aspects of that presentation. I spoke very glibly and indeed, inappropriately about the work and the people of the Policy and Standards Division of LC. Frankly, there was a lot that I didn’t understand then [and by know means do I understand it all now] about the history and processes of their work and I didn’t show them or what they do the proper respect, or even kindness. What is appropriate on twitter, or in casual conversations isn’t necessarily appropriate for the national stage and I really overstepped some lines in that presentation.


Despite this misstep — I continued to plunge into our shared organization’s work serving on a task force and serving as intern to a committee. There were projects at work that challenged me, forced me to really commit to specific workflows and keeping several different people in the loop. These are not traditionally things that I’ve done well, so I was glad to be pushed to be better at them. The work itself, was also challenging. As the Hebrew cataloger [I cataloged English materials as well as various other languages that crossed our desk but 30% of my job was solely Hebrew] I had to learn and become adept in an entirely separate set of practices that I’d never learned in school for encoding materials in RDA. In truth, I struggled with the Hebrew itself at times too. I hadn’t taken any kind of rigorous Hebrew course since high school and never expected that I’d suddenly have to remember both the modern language and the rabbinical sphere.


Overall, my time at Brandeis has been filled with incredible opportunities and professional growth. I entered fresh from library school with no knowledge of how the work is done outside the classroom but my colleagues, were incredibly patient with me as I caught up. I know I’m leaving stronger, and I’d like to think I’m leaving them better off too.


Looking towards the future, I expect challenges in location — I’ve never lived outside Massachusetts or even the greater Boston area and will have to adjust a new pace, a new social standard.


I imagine the new job will have challenges that I don’t even know what they are yet — new people, new expectations, perhaps a more formal setting, I’m not sure precisely what to expect. I hope to continue my professional contributions to the field, and also to leave more of a mark on the scholarly record although that isn’t my strongest suit.


I’m excited and nervous for what comes next — but I know that I’m in good shape to face it.


As always — check out the full approved list, and be sure to read through the newest tentative list and to send feedback to LC! Your feedback matters, as PSD says:

“Each Tentative List includes an email address to which comments on the proposals may be submitted. PSD accepts comments from LC and SACO catalogers, other library and archive professionals, lawmakers, and members of the general public. The comment period lasts approximately one month, beginning with the publication of the Tentative List and continuing until the closing date indicated on the list.”

The following are newly approved headings which I proposed [or canceled LCSH in favor of NARs]

  • Privilege (Social psychology)
  • BR563.W45 [class number for Christianity — History — By region or country –America — North America — United States — By race or ethnic group, A-Z — Whites]
  • Hawkman (Fictitious character) [Canceled in favor of NAR]

Onto the headings!

Animals in education

cat wearing glasses, reading a book and holding a pencil
This cat could teach us a thing or two


Anthropomorphism in architecture

building shaped like a cow
Comoorcial real estate


Baltimore Riots, Baltimore, MD., 2015

sign that says
Justice for Freddie — also not the heading I would’ve proposed.


Birds of prey in literature

Cover of comic book Birds of Prey
Too cool to look at that explosion


Christians, White

Mike Pence meeting with Freedom Caucus to take away health care
Seems like a representative cross section of America


Destruction art

okay I searched for “exploding art” and didn’t find any, but I did find this:


image from
Go ahead, gamify your library. But when it’s Black Mirror all over place, don’t come crying to me.


Homecoming in art

Still from Spider-Man: Homecoming
There’s TWO homecomings here.


Monsters in education

Cover of
Spoiler: the librarian IS a monster, but also the girl’s parents are monsters so they eat him


Satirical maps

Mercator projection map
yeah, a satire on the ACTUAL relative size of the continents #NeverMercator


Science fiction–Songs and music

image of Rush's 2112
Attention all planets of the solar federation


Smell in design

image of the smell-o-vision from a 4D theater
I saw Wonder Woman in ‘4D’ and the smell aspect added nothing at best and was annoying at worst


As always — check out the full approved list

The following are newly approved headings which I proposed [or canceled LCSH in favor of NARs]

  • Anti-vaccination movement
  • Charity–Religious aspects–Buddhism [Christianity, etc.]
  • Death of God in literature
  • Farhud, Baghdad, Iraq, 1941
  • Intersectionality (Sociology)
  • HM488.5 [class number for Intersectionality]
  • Card games [LCGFT term]
  • Green Arrow (Fictitious character) [Canceled in favor of NAR]
  • Lane, Lois (Fictitious character) [Canceled in favor of NAR]
  • Luthor, Lex (Fictitious character) [Canceled in favor of NAR]
  • Strange, Adam (Fictitious character) [Canceled in favor of NAR]

Onto the headings!

Avarice in motion pictures

still from "Fight Club" depicting the 'Greed' crime scene
No, “Greed in motion pictures” isn’t a UF


Cello and electric guitar music

Still of 'Heiven' a Finnish metal band that has a cellist
For some reason only the string players hold their instruments, but I assure you there’s a guitar too


Cooking (Poppies)

Still from 'Wizard of Oz' when they're in the poppy field
Arguably, the Wicked Witch was cooking up a plan with those poppies? Kinda?


Couples on television

still from Once Upon a Time that shows Regina and Emma almost kissing



Sydney Opera House on crest of giant wave
they always come for our landmarks first


Flipped classrooms

upside down classroom
Even I think this is silly


Governors–Farewell addresses

Still from Rick Perry's farewell address
Not every farewell address rises to “One Last Time” level


Hockey on television

Still from Simpsons on Ice episode of Simpsons
All I know of hockey I learned from this episode and Mighty Ducks



House in a bathtub fulla vicodin
I don’t have a pain management problem, I have a pain problem


Lamas in art

painting of a llama blowing a bubble
I wanna see that spiritual leader blow a bubble as dope as this


Man-faced bulls

Man wearing a bull mask
Close enough


Polar bear–Counting

Picture of three polars bears


RagaMuffin cat

Two ragamuffin cats
The official policy of this blog is rescue cats, never buy from breeders


Siberian cat

Siberian cat
Doesn’t mean I’m NOT gonna post pictures of all cats tho


Sorcerer’s apprentice (Tale)

Cosplayer of Sorcerer's Apprentice
Admit it, you can hear the music right now


Space ships in motion pictures

Star Trek Discovery
What’s the deal with this? We need a new streaming whatever? Excited to see Yeoh in the chair


Tea bowls

Tea bowl with ceramic teeth on it
I would not like to drink from this


Virtual reality headsets

80s woman wearing VR headset
I look forward to trying VR one day and being half this cool


Women superheroes in motion pictures

Wonder Woman 'No Man's Land' scene
I cried


Women superheroes on television

Still of Vixen from Arrow
Please do not fight over animated vs live action Vixen, we have BOTH



Hanukkah music

Sheet music for a Hanukkah song
What, you don’t have string quartets at your Hanukkah parties?


Paranormal drama

Promo still for Supernatural
It has a UF of Supernatural drama, so it counts


Rock operas

Savatage's Wake of Magellan
Savatage actually has a lotta great rock operas


Visual albums

Beyonce's Lemonade


As always — check out the full approved list

The following are newly approved headings which I proposed [or canceled LCSH in favor of NARs]

  • Sex workers
  • Lap dancers [added BT to Sex workers]
  • Strip teasers [added BT to Sex workers]
  • Prostitutes [added BT to Sex workers]
  • Sex surrogates [added BT to Sex workers] 
  • Board games [LCGFT term]
  • Kings and rulers [added RT to Queens]
  • Cthulhu (Fictitious character)
  • Jennings (Fictitious character)

Here’s the post I wrote a post about Sex workers before I proposed the term.

Onto the headings!

Baseball in dance

Dancers dressed as baseball players
I hope he takes the glove off before trying a lift


Baseball in motion pictures

Still from "League of their own"
Name a better baseball movie than LoTO. I’ll wait


Camelidae in art

Joe Camel smoking a cigarette
Smoking is COOL, kids!


Debt in popular culture

                         This thread is very good.

Extraterrestrial beings on television

Rigel from Farscape
I’m never *not* gonna rep Farscape


Framing (Cinematography)

Still from Mad Men
For more amazing cinematog with Moss, see Handmaid’s Tale


Holocaust deniers

a dumpster on fire

Human-alien encounters on television

Gillian Anderson as Scully meeting some fans dressed as aliens
Pretty sure I don’t remember this episode


Iron in human nutrition

Magneto pulling iron from guy's blood in X2
Remember, too much iron is bad for you


Mothers of rock musicians

Image of Geddy Lee and his mother
Geddy’s mom is actually in the book that justified the creation of this heading


United States–Foreign relations–2017-

Dumpster fire

United States–Politics and government–2017-

Dumpster fire

Video game designers

Picture of Tracy Fullerton
Tracy Fullerton is working on a game about Walden that sounds p cool


LCGFT terms


Animal fiction

Comic book cover with Animal from The Muppets
Nailed it


Campus fiction

Cover of "Campus Tramp"
Lawrence Block is really tossing us catalogers a bone


Mumblecore films

Still from "The Overnight"
Don’t let Adam Scott’s terrible facial hair trick you: The Overnight is v funny



Novelization of The Nightmare Before Christmas
A novelization doesn’t seem like it’ll quite capture what makes this movie good


Opera adaptations

Still from The Fly, the opera
I hope there’s an aria: “Be Afraid, Be Very Afraid”


Rock lyrics

Neil Peart lyric sheet for "Closer to the Heart"
If you already think Neil Peart’s lyrics are pretentious [unsubscribe plz] wait’ll you see the way he wrote ’em

Guess the movie!

Previously in this ‘series’

*i’m changing the rule from last time and just pretending all the things that aren’t in LCSH or the NAF, are, sorryNotSorry


651 _ 0 LV-426 (Satellite)

650 _ 0 Xenomorph $x Eggs $x Incubation.

650 _ 0 Xenomorph $x Growth.

650 _ 0 Xenomorph $x Life cycle.

650 _ 0 Xenomorph $x Chemical defenses.

650 _ 0 Xenomorph $x Embryos $x Transplantation.

650 _ 0 Xenomorph $x Effect of altitude on.

650 _ 0 Xenomorph $x Effect of fires on.

650 _ 0 Male pregnancy.

650 _ 0 Miners $x Death.

650 _ 0 Human-alien encounters.

600 1 0 Ripley, Ellen, $d 2092-2179 $x Adversaries.

600 1 0 Ripley, Ellen, $d 2092-2179 $x Career in courage.

600 1 0 Kane, Gilbert, $d 2083-2122 $x Relations with extraterrestrial beings.

600 0 0 Ash $c (Android) $x Knowledge $x Special order 937.

600 0 0 Jonesy $c (Cat)

610 2 0 Nostromo (Ship)

650 _ 0 Ships $x Abandoning of.



As always — check out the full approved list

All the _____, Mogul headings have been changed to ______, Mogul Empire

The following are my headings [or canceled headings in favor of name authority records]

  • Atom (Fictitious character)
  • Bachelors in rabbinical literature [BM496.9.B34]
  • Vigilante (Fictitious character : DC Comics, Inc.)

Another heading I proposed, Nakba, Palestine, 1948 — was not approved. I wrote up my thoughts about that non-approval.

Onto the headings!

Big Blowup, 1910

Memorial to the firefighters who died

Cooking in mass media

She always said she was salty on twitter.

Christian Science Plaza (Boston, Mass.)

I wouldn’t trust them to recommend a doctor, but that’s a dope plaza.

Civil rights of corporations



What about Victorian helmet safety?

Guerillas in motion pictures

See, because this movie has both.

Guy Fawkes masks

I bet Guy Fawkes would be real confused if he came back today

Hides and skins — Symbolic aspects

Most iterations do not have the cutlass tho

Lunch counters

Not pictured: racism

Marijuana in literature

Nailed it

Patient rooms

celebration-patient room.jpg
okay, well all the rooms i’ve stayed in were not this nice

Water buffalo meat

Good luck.

Women video gamers

I saw her speak once, pretty good stuff!

Necessary But Not Sufficient

By now you may’ve seen the new grant that I’m sponsoring through ALCTS: here’s the announcement and here’s the grant itself.
As I think transparency [particularly when it comes to bureaucracy], I thought I’d take a minute to explain some of the hows and whys that this has come to be.

There is a general backstory and a specific backstory.

First, the general:

Librarianship is not a diverse profession. Much has been written on the ways and means to address this: a brief bibliography [courtesy of Jessica Schomberg] is linked.

I also recommend this tweet storm by Anna-Sophia Zingarelli Sweet

This is a complex issue and it cannot be solved by throwing money at it. The inequalities that exist in society and of course librarianship are not going to vanish through more private grants.

I want to make that very clear, so I put it right in the title. It’s insufficient. It’s insufficient to give money to people who are already on the path to librarianship because we’re missing people who were never encouraged to pursue this career. We’re missing those who can’t afford to pursue the career.

It’s insufficient because bringing one person to an ALA conference doesn’t mean that the’ll be respected, or listened to, or given room at the mic. It’s insufficient because they may return with bold ideas and a mind full of change and be facing an institution which embraces neither.


It’s necessary — which leads me to the specific:

A few weeks after ALA Annual 2016 [Jun 23-28] I saw a peer on twitter lamenting that she was unable to attend a conference for lack of funds. This colleague, so early in her career, and in a field in which so few people look like her, had already impressed me with her confidence and voice as a cataloger.

I reached out to her and offered to pay the registration fee — she graciously declined, and I understood that there was an impropriety to what I’d offered, even if it came from a good place. Offering money to [and taking from] people, although ostensibly a nice thing to do, is laden with social and cultural rules and expectations.

But I still wanted to make a difference and help others like her get to the professional conferences and and meetings where big things happen. I briefly flirted with the idea of starting some kind of grant on my own, but that would still have some of the “rando giving you money” vibe. I knew that I needed the power and weight of an institution of some kind behind me. I needed to go legit.

On July 19th — I emailed Keri Cascio, our wonderful, hardworking, and talented ALCTS Executive Director. I explained what I wanted to do and over the next many months she put into motion [along with Susan Wynne] the complex forms and discussions necessary to get this off the ground. This simply could not have become a reality without her, and she has my deepest gratitude.

To sum up:

It is necessary because it will bring one more person to the table — someone to whom we need to be listening and to whom we haven’t been.

It is insufficient because it is a tiny speck amidst an entire culture [both at large and in libship] of Nice White People who think that we’re open and welcoming and that we’re all doing what needs to be done.
It is my honor and privilege to be a part of this grant, and it is my duty to find ways to do more.

The Breadth of Women and Men, Pt. 3

Bolded words refer to extant LCSH terms

Links to previous parts: Part 1, Part 2.

Having matched [as best I could] the NT terms of Men and Women in Part 1 — I then looked at the NTs of Men which did not have a match to the NTs of Women but which had a counterpart in LCSH that for some reason or other was not in the hierarchy of Women. I’m now turning to the NTs of Women and going to perform the same analysis.

The following terms are NTs of Women which do not have an equivalent term in the NTs of Women. For each I’ll provide either one of three options for potential equivalents:

  1. None: This indicates that there isn’t a term in LCSH that I think could be an equivalent candidate as an NT of Women.
  2. N/A: This indicates that I don’t think an equivalent term could exist. That is, the concept is limited, not just in LCSH.
  3. [Specific term which exists in LCSH]: In some cases I’ve found a specific term which matches, but is not currently an NT of Women.

Advertising and women                                       None
Architecture and women                                     None
Assyrian women                                                     None
Beauty contestants                                                None
Buddhist women                                                    None
Computers and women                                        None
Crones                                                                       N/A
Dalit women                                                           None
Dance for women                                                  None
Daughters-in-law                                                   Sons-in-law
Discounts for women                                           None
Exercise for women                                            Exercise for men
Fascism and women                                           None
Gentile women                                                     None
Hindu women                                                      None
Internet and women                                          None
Jaina women                                                        None
Jewish religious education of women         None
Large-breasted women                                    N/A
Libraries and women                                       None
Mass media and women                                  None
Matriarchy                                                          Patriarchy
Medically uninsured women                         None
Mentally ill women                                          None
Minority women                                               None
Museums and women                                      None
National socialism and women                     None
Physical education for women                    None
Pregnant women                                              Male pregnancy
Puerto Rican women                                       None
Queens                                                                 Kings and rulers
Racially mixed women                                   None
Radio and women                                            None
Retired women                                                 None
Runaway women                                             None
Samaritan women                                           None
Scolds                                                                  N/A
Sedentary women                                            None
Self-defense for women                                 None
Self-employed women                                    None
Separated women                                           None
Sexual ethics for women                              None
Sikh women                                                      None
Syriac women                                                   None
Taoist women                                                   None
Technology and women                                None
Television and women                                  None
United States. Navy—Women                     None
Video games for women                               None
Women’s mass media                                    Men’s mass media
Yezidi women                                                  None
Zoroastrian women                                       None


Notice that there are significantly more NTs of Women — and the vast majority are unmatchable as it stands. Remember too that a rule of BT creation is that for any […] and […] heading, a BT is made for the second term. What that means is that for all the […] and women headings, the BT connection to Women is obligatory. But what that doesn’t mean is that these are the only headings that are coinjoining women and a concept — for example:

  • Women and anarchism
  • Women and animals
  • Women and city planning

None of these have Women as a BT because the first term is women and the BT is made to the second term.

I highlight these examples to show that LCSH isn’t saying “These are all the concepts which are inherently included in the concept of a woman, enumerated and collated for your convenience.” LCSH’s structure and rules make it so that gleaning total semantic meaning from the hierarchies is impossible.

There are many unmatched racial/ethnic/religious/class/status qualified terms. There is little doubt in my mind that when a book is published about a specific group of people, unless that book says in the title that it’s about the men of that group even if it only has the men as examples or case studies or discussion points — the subject heading [….] men will not be created. The men are neutral, and the women are a marked difference.


Nakba, Palestine, 1948

Over the course of the war of Israel’s statehood — over 700,000 Palestinians fled or were expelled from their homes.

Amongst Palestinians this loss of home and land is known as the Nakba [al-Nakbah, Arabic for catastrophe]

I was cataloging a resource, Palestinians in Syria: Nakba memories of shattered communities by Anaheed Al-Hardan and was trying to determine some good subject headings.

Reading the table of contents, the back of the book and the preface — it was clear that this was a resource partially about the shared memories/feelings/affect that the Nakba had on the Palestinian people.

A cursory search of LCSH revealed that there was no heading for this particular expulsion [which I could then propose a subdivision of — Influence under]

Thus I created a proposal for the term — this is that proposal:

010 $a sp2017000197

040 $a MWalB $b eng $c DLC

150 $a Nakba, Palestine, 1948

450 $a Catastrophe, Palestine, 1948

450 $a Nakbah, Palestine, 1948

550 $w g $a Israel­-Arab War, 1948-­1949

550 $w g $a Population transfers $x Palestinian Arabs

670 $a Work cat: 945105294: Palestinians in Syria: Nakba memories of shattered communities, 2016: $b Preface (…the Nakba, or catastrophe, that resulted from the establishment of the state of Israel on Palestine in May 1948. This catastrophe saw the dispossession of more than half of historic Palestine’s population, some 800,000 people.)

670 $a 854503654: Auron, Yair. ha­Shoʼah, ha­-teḳumah ṿeha-­Nakbah, 2013: $b (English title: The Holocaust, the rebirth and the Nakba)

670 $a 820884307: Masalha, Nur. The Palestine Nakba, 2012: $b Introduction (1948 was the year of the Palestine Nakba (Catastrophe), the uprooting of the Palestinians and the dismemberment and de-Arabisation of historic Palestine.)

As you can see, I added two additional sources demonstrating the preferred form of the name and to generate UF references.

Yesterday the PSD evaluated my proposal and rejected it for the following reason:

Nabka refers to the 1948 expulsion of Palestinian Arabs from British Mandate Palestine (today’s Israel, the West Bank, the Gaza Strip, and Jordan). The existing heading Population transfers—Palestinian Arabs is synonymous, or nearly synonymous, in meaning to the heading being proposed; it should be assigned to the work being cataloged. The proposal was not approved.

While I’m unsure why the PSD defined the term for me, when I’d clearly understood it myself in the proposal, the second half is completely wrong.

I then sent Libby Dechman [the policy specialist responsible for the list] the following email [and a big thank-you to Anna-Sophia for reading it and providing me with feedback!]

Dear Libby,

Having seen the PSDs decision to not approve the above heading, I was hoping to have an opportunity to explain why I think it is a necessary heading.

In the explanation given you write:

“The existing heading Population transfers—Palestinian Arabs is synonymous, or nearly synonymous, in meaning to the heading being proposed”

The crux of my objection is that it is not at all synonymous with Population transfers–Palestinian Arabs, because it is only an instance of that. My proposal specifically included Population transfers–Palestinian Arabs as a BT term, because there are other instances where this happened.

1. From 1949-1956 thousands of Palestinians continued to be removed after the Nakba.

2. In 1967, 280,000 to 325,000 Palestinians were removed after the Six Day War.

3. In 1991 some 200,000 Palestinians were driven out of Kuwait aftter the Gulf war.

4. In 1999  roughly 1000 Palestinians were expelled from South Mt. Hebron


In the event that the problem lay in my construction of the proposal, a named event in accordance with H1592, I had considered two other constructions:

1. Palestinian Arabs–Palestine–History–Expulsion, 1948 (c.f. Acadians—Nova Scotia—History—Expulsion, 1755; Jews—England—History—Expulsion, 1290)

2. Palestinian Arabs–Relocation, 1948 (c.f. Japanese—Canada—Evacuation and relocation, 1942-1945)

I had also considered the BT Forced migration–Palestine

My point is that this occurrence, the Nakba, is but one among many, an instance among the general–a perfect example of a BT/NT relationship. Some resources are written about the general and various forced movements of the Palestinians, and other resources are written about the specific instance of the Nakba.

I hope I’ve justified why I think this heading deserves a second look and why it is not synonymous with Population transfers–Palestinian Arabs.

I appreciate any guidance you can give me on a better or more fit construction if you deem that necessary.

Thank you so much for your time,


I’ll update this post when/if I hear back.