Genre Headings LCGFT
3 August 2011
See at end for multiple URLs for LCGFT of some genres. The
complete list may be seen on ClassWeb. Narrower terms may be
consulted under broad genre terms in LCSH:
LC's Voyager is not yet equipped to handle LCGFT. There is no "Genre"
search key, and they are identified in the last column of hit lists as
"not applicable". You can locate them by searching Keword (All) in
In 2007 the Library of Congress' Policy and Standards Division (PSD,
then called the Cataloging Policy and Support Office, or CPSO) began
to develop genre/form terms in the area of moving images. Since then
terms for recorded sound, cartography and law have also been included.
Genre/form terms for music, and religion will be incorporated.
PSD's intent has been to develop a thesaurus distinct from Library of
Congress Subject Headings (LCSH), but until recently the authority
records have been assigned MARC21 coding indicating that they are part
of LCSH. When the terms have been assigned in bibliographic records,
they have been coded with second indicator "0" (zero), which is used
for LCSH. They have also been assigned LCCNs with the same prefix as
subject headings, "sh." Additionally, approved genre/form terms have
been published in the Supplementary Vocabularies volume of LCSH and
instruction sheets governing theirdevelopment and use have appeared in
the Subject Headings Manual (SHM).
PSD now to formally separates genre/form terms from LCSH, in both
MARCrecords and in printed products. The details are outlined below.
*Title of thesaurus and MARC source code Since 2007 the genre/form
headings have been referred to as a genre/form list or a genre/form
thesaurus, because the thesaurus did not yet have a formal title. PSD
has now coined the title Library of Congress Genre/Form Terms for
Library and Archival Materials (LCGFT). This title appeared in print
for the first time in the Supplemental Vocabularies volume of the 32nd
edition of LCSH.
On May 26, 2010 the Network Development and MARC Standards Office
(NDMSO) announced that it has assigned the MARC source code "lcgft" to
the thesaurus. (For the NDMSO announcement see:
*MARC21 records Within a MARC21 authority record, the thesaurus to
which the heading belongs, is through a combination of 008/11 and
subfield $f of the 040 field.
Authority records for genre/form terms are coded as follows.
008/11: z ("Other")
In bibliographic records, genre/form terms are always contained in the
655 ield, coded by a combination of second indicator "7"and the source
code in subfield $2. LC genre/form terms in bibliographic records are
655 -7 $a [Term]. $2 lcgft
This formula has been employed successfully for many other thesauri
and lists of terms and PSD expects that its use for the LCGFT will be
*Documentation A separate manual for genre/form terms is being
written. It will include instructions and guidelines on proposing and
applying LC genre/form headings, and will be formatted similar to the
way that the SHM is. (Until it is developed, instruction sheets for
genre/form headings will continue to reside in the SHM.) PSD is also
investigating the possibility of extracting LCGFT from Supplementary
Vocabularies and publishing it separately.
Questions or comments on these plans may be directed to Janis L.
Young, LC's genre/form coordinator, at
LCGFT may now be viewed at htto://id.loc.gov
[Adapted from an LC announcement.]