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Chapter 18. Seek and Ye Shall Find > Book Learning - Pg. 202

Seek and Ye Shall Find 202 Book Learning Books are "user friendly"--they're light, easy to use, and familiar. They can't crash as computers can, either. Best of all, since it takes time to write and publish a book, they tend to be reliable sources, but more on that in Chapter 19, "Cast a Critical Eye." Right now, you'll learn how to find the books you need to complete your research. Since libraries have a lot of books--a university library can have over a million volumes, a community library over 100,000 tomes-- classification systems were created to track the volumes. Knowing how these systems work can help you find the books you need to complete your research. It's all based on the concept of call numbers. Word Watch The Dewey or Library of Congress classification designation for a book is its call number. Books are divided into two broad classes: fiction and nonfiction . Fiction is catalogued under the author's last name. Nonfiction books, however, are classified in two different ways: the Dewey Dec- imal classification system and the Library of Congress classification system. The systems use com- pletely different sets of letters and numbers, as you'll learn. Dewey Decimal Classification System Write Angles Be sure to copy down the call number exactly as it appears in the card catalogue. Otherwise, it will be tough --if not impossible--to find the book. Melvil Dewey (1851­1931) had a thing for order, which may have made life at home somewhat tense, but it did revolutionize libraries. Before Dewey came along, many libraries filed books by color or size, a chaotic system at best. Dewey's classification system, published in 1876, divided nonfic- tion books into 10 broad categories: 000­099 100­199 200­299 General works such as encyclopedias Philosophy Religion (including mythology)