UBC Faculty Research and Publications

Centring LGBT2QIA+ Subjects in Knowledge Organization Systems Bullard, Julia; Dierking, Amber; Grundner, Avi


This paper details two interdependent knowledge organization projects for an LGBT2QIA+ library. The authors, in the context of volunteer library work for an independent library, redesigned the classification system and subject cataloguing guidelines to centre LGBT2QIA+ subjects. We discuss the priorities of creating and maintaining knowledge organization systems for a historically marginalized community and address the challenge that queer subjectivity poses to the goals of knowledge organization. The classification system features a focus on identity and physically reorganizes the library space in a way that accounts for the multiple and overlapping labels that constitute the currently articulated boundaries of this community. The subject heading system focuses on making visible topics and elements of identity made invisible by universal systems and by the newly implemented classification system. We discuss how this project may inform knowledge organization for other marginalized subjects, particularly through process and documentation that prioritizes transparency and the acceptance of an unfinished endpoint for queer knowledge organization.

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