Cataloging Legal Literature 4th Edition

Cataloging Legal Literature Online

While RDA (Resource Description and Access), the new descriptive cataloging standard, may leave many decisions to the cataloger’s judgment, the past two decades have witnessed significant developments on the national scene which encourage compliance with national standards. A cataloging center’s participation in a bibliographic utility, in cooperative cataloging programs such as CONSER, BIBCO or NACO, requires conforming to the MARC formats and Library of Congress-PCC practices. To assist the law cataloger in preparing catalog records which meet these standards, Cataloging Legal Literature, 4th Edition (CLL4) describes the authors’ understanding of the current descriptive and subject cataloging practices for legal materials. Throughout the manual, illustrations of descriptive or subject cataloging and MARC tags are offered. Examples of subject cataloging are based on guidelines published in the Library of Congress’ Subject Cataloging Manual (SCM), as well as identifying Library of Congress practices for assigning subject headings.

“It is an indispensable tool for law catalogers.”Cataloging & Classification Quarterly, v. 26, n. 2 (1998)


About the Fourth Edition Print


Designed to assist catalogers working with legal materials, Cataloging Legal Literature, 4th Edition (CLL4) is not a general self-help book for the beginning cataloger. One goal is to help the law cataloger deal with the ambiguities of 21st century cataloging. First year law students have to learn how to think like lawyers. The questions, some unanswered, posed here are to help a cataloger analyze materials and think like a law cataloger. The authors’ intent is to supplement existing primary and secondary cataloging sources by discussing and examining cataloging practices for legal materials. Cataloging Legal Literature, 4th Edition (CLL4) must be used in conjunction with RDA, LCSH, SHM, and general handbooks on descriptive and subject cataloging. This manual does not provide a full discussion on all of the RDA instructions or Library of Congress subject headings; only those that represent common problems for legal materials have been included.While much attention is paid to standards, flexible thinking about the needs of the law user, is also one of our goals.

What’s New in the Fourth Edition


Cataloging Legal Literature, 4th edition (CLL4) incorporates relevant excerpts from the columns of Technical Services Law Librarian, the official publication of the Technical Services Special Interest Section of the American Association of Law Libraries, the Cataloger’s Desktop, RDA, Classification Web, Library of Congress Subject Headings (LCSH), the Subject Headings Manual (SHM), and catalog records from the Library of Congress and other catalogs as needed. We have hoped to make CLL4 as authoritative as we can by also including hypertext links to all of the major resources that make up a law catalogers’ desktop today. Whenever possible, we have provided links to freely available resources; however, links to the RDA Toolkit and Cataloger’s Desktop, both of which require paid subscriptions, are critical.

The previous editions were in large part an annotated AACR2 for legal rules and uniform titles, with some description examples and subject cataloging recommendations. In this edition, Part 1 covers the most common and troublesome legal publication questions with a much greater emphasis on electronic resources. The subject chapter includes many of those same cataloging recommendations, but now includes some examples of genre/form terms. Part 2 is a greatly expanded combination of the A-Z sections that covered subject headings and the illustrated glossary. This A-Z section also now includes genre/form term examples.A chapter on LC Classification as well as classification tips included in the A-Z section is completely new to CLL4, classification coverage having been previously excluded.While previous editions placed an emphasis on Library of Congress examples, that is no longer possible in today’s “cooperative” environment; plus, examples had to be revised to make them conform to RDA.

Cataloging Legal Literature Online

Part 1:

For the first time, CLL4 will also be available in digital format as a searchable resource via HeinOnline. Part 1 includes hyperlinks to cataloging resources cited, extensive MARC examples, and charts.

Searching: Use the main search bar and Advanced Search link to search the database.

Search by:

  • Text
  • Term
  • Definition
  • Alert
  • Description
  • Subjects
  • Classification
  • History

Part 2:

Part 2 of CLL4 is an alphabetical listing of legal terms and publication formats. These terms will link users to RDA instructions, subject practice, classification information, and cataloging examples.

Browse terms such as:

  • Actions
  • Appeal proceedings
  • Bar journals
  • Citations
  • Foreign relations
  • Indexes
  • Journals
  • Law reviews
  • Opinions
  • Session laws
  • Trademarks
  • And more!

Simply click on the term you would like to know more about to view its RDA provisions, classification tips, MARC examples, and more.