690 Tag: LGBTQ Resource

In 2005, at the request of the executive coordinator of the Larry Kramer Initiative, the library appointed a task force to explore ways to increase the visibility of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer materials in Yale University Library.  In addition to the request from LKI, this task force was responding to requests from students, faculty, and other researchers for greater access to this material, along with widespread professional recognition that such material had historically been under-cataloged in library collections.  One of the task force’s recommendations was to create a “virtual” collection of LGBTQ material, accessible via a 690 tag added to appropriate records; while the task force recognized that subject cataloging has greatly improved for much LGBTQ material, it also noted that in some areas, particularly belles-lettres and some non-Western resources, subject cataloging still might not be able to provide the minimal-level access that a 690 tag would.

The task force developed the following Scope Note for the 690 tag:

The 690 MARC tag “LGBTQ resource” is applied to material that may be of interest to persons studying issues related to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and/or queer topics.  The application of the tag means that the item’s content either has an explicit lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender focus or may support further research in the subject area.  The sexual identity of the author(s) has no bearing on the assignment of the tag.

Cataloging staff (including FASTCAT and student support staff) should add this 690 tag “LGBTQ resource” to the following types of material. 

  • Any item that contains a banner flagging it as an LGBTQ resource.  Such banners will be added by acquisitions staff (e.g. to items acquired with LGBTQ-specific funds) and by selectors reviewing material for content. 
  • Any item for which an LGBTQ-specific LC subject heading is either already present in or added to the catalog record.  Staff may use cataloger’s judgment in determining what constitutes an LGBTQ-specific LCSH, but a list of such headings can also be found on the Yale Library LGBTQI Subject Guide
  • Any item for which, based on cataloger’s judgment, the tag would be appropriate, even if the item lacks a banner and does not qualify for an LGBTQ-specific LCSH.  Such a situation may particularly apply to belles-lettres material, items from the backlog that predate the policy, and area units. The workflow would also apply to remote digital resources controlled by Yale if the practice has been to assign LCSH to the bibliographic records, although units that do not assign LCSH should not be discouraged from assigning the equivalent metadata field in their records. (Note that YUL cataloging does not apply Special Provisions for Increased Subject Access for Fiction in SCM H 1790, although fiction subjects are accepted on cataloging copy)
  • Any batch-loaded resource, such as microfilm sets, when we can reasonably assume that all set titles are LGBTQ-related, e.g. a set paid on an LGBTQ fund.

Excluded from this workflow:

Records using LCSH for remote digital resources if the resource is not controlled by Yale. Examples would include: batch loaded records for e-books and serials provided by vendors and batch loaded records for government documents. The maintenance of these records is controlled by the creator of the record, not by the Yale library.

In the MARC record, the tag will appear as:

690   4 ‡a LGBTQ resource.
Effective Date: 
July 6, 2007