The Changing Terms in Sears
Keywords:Sears List, Cataloging, Access, Terminology
Librarians are considered the keepers of knowledge. However, the very method in which this knowledge is kept can cause confusion, not only for patrons seeking the knowledge held, but also for librarians unfamiliar with methods used in classifying books. Changing terms, or terms that do not change and thus portray what today could be considered bias or prejudice, cause confusion or even embarrassment in searching the vast knowledge base available. Librarians are known for organizational work, particularly catalogers who organize knowledge in the library into a seemingly accessible order. This article focuses on selected concepts of importance to the Judaic library and Judaic library collection: Judaism, Jews, Israelis, and the Holocaust, which have increased in coverage in small and medium-sized libraries; and it traces how the subjects for these concepts have changed over time. The focus is on the headings used in the Sears List of Subject Headings, and those used in the Library of Congress Subject Headings list are not addressed.
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