What’s so Great About the Dewey Decimal System?

I thoroughly enjoyed the piece, “What’s so Great About the Dewey Decimal System?” The writing is accessible and the article itself is explanatory and informative. It not only describes Dewey Decimal Classification (DDC), but also explains Library of Congress Classification (LCC) and compares the two systems. I understand that Dewey and his system deserve immense acknowledgement and praise. However, the author only writes three sentences stating that Dewey “was no saint,” which is understandable and could be contributed to the time that Dewey lived in. But, radical cataloging, for example, helps to bring light to the social inefficiencies of such dominant systems like the DDC.


4 thoughts on “What’s so Great About the Dewey Decimal System?

  1. Diana, I like that you pointed out the accessibility of the writing in this reading. I completely agree and find it extremely refreshing because I feel as though a lot of the things we’ve read have been really vocabulary heavy and it’s nice to read something that sounds more casual.

  2. Diana: I too agree that this article was well written and clarified quite a number of points. There were a few parts that were very funny, i.e. the fact that he was “no saint”.

  3. I’m with you, too! I thought this article did a great job of comparing DDC and LCC and I understand the differences (and pros and cons) of these systems much more clearly now, especially why academic libraries use LCC and school libraries use DDC, which I was curious about previously. Yes, Dewey’s personal influences show up in his system. It would for anyone trying to categorize all of the knowledge that exists! Personal influences show up in all classification schemes, as we are reading about this week.

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