Lower Elwha Education and Culture
Lower Elwha Education Departments
(Klallam Language and Culture, K-12, Higher Ed, and Tribal Library)
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Friday, May 22, 2009

Dewey Numbers

Debbie Reese's most recent post on her blog Native Americans in Children's Literature, "Carolyn Dunn on Coyote Speaks", has some interesting things to say about intellectual property, secrecy, cultural reclamation, and getting things right. At the end of the post she points out that the book she's discussing is shelved in folklore but should be shelved in religion.

In this library we occasionally move things around, but mostly follow the catalog numbers assigned by Library of Congress. And sure enough, some of our books about Native American religion and mythology are shelved in the 299s (a religion number) and some in 398s (a folklore number). We are wondering how Library of Congress catalogers decided, and if we should reexamine some of the choices, and (most of all) how we would decide which to change.

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