Thursday, March 13, 2014

Subject Headings--מילות מפתח

Yes, still in Library Land here...if you want to know about my knitting, or something else go away and come back some other time.

Being in a bi-lingual library poses problems.  The majority of our materials are in Hebrew, but some are in English and a few in other languages.  (We have  a huge periodical collection in Italian, but that is an issue for another day.)

I had the other issue of books in two languages, for now I'm just cataloging them in Hebrew, and we will see what I do when we update the catalog (and that is another issue for another day.)  So, English language books should be easy for this native speaker, right? Wrong!  The ULI gives English subject headings for these books...which is somewhat logical, but if you are a bi-lingual Israeli, looking for books in the catalog, are you really going to search for your subject heading both in English and in Hebrew?  Are all the English subject headings cross-referenced to a Hebrew subject heading? (Maybe that is possible, if so, please teach me!) Anyway, it seems to be that the best thing to do for our majority Hebrew audience is to use Hebrew subject headings for English books as well. That way everything comes up together, and you can decide if you want to cut your teeth on the English or not. And nobody misses books that would have been appropriate.

Any thoughts from my librarian friends?

Also, any ASMI members going to the Workshop day at Yad Ben Zvi at the end of the month? I"ll be there, and would love to meet you!

***Another win for me! Asked the director if I could take the uncataloged non-Hebrew/non-English books and put them in storage for the future so I could have more space behind my desk and focus on the relevant languages...he gave me the thumbs up!


Anonymous said...

The NLI subjects are cross referenced. Haifa University is in the process fo switching over to use of the NLI database of LCSH & Hebrew translation of same (based on the Open U subject headings and Bar Ilan's) and if that conversion goes well, the colleges might follow suit. The NLI is planning to open their database to everyone, but I'm not sure if IDEA will support the linkages.

Robin Zalben said...

A decision has been made about our catalog, my feeling is that this is the type of thing I'll discuss during my training on the system...hopefully I'll be able to get things to work the way they should, and this will be one of my issues.

Anonymous said...

Ask your system if they can import the NLI authority files and if not, if they'd be willing to work with the NLI to find a way to do so. If they agree, I'll give you the contact info of the relevant NLI staffer.