Influence of

How is the influence of one topic on another reflected in the subject headings?
According to the Library of Congress Subject Cataloging Manual: Subject Headings there are a number of ways to describe the influence of one topic on another in the subject headings.

The most common ways are to use the subject subdivisions: “Influence,” “… influences,” and “Foreign influences.”
1. The free-floating subdivision “Influence” is used under names of individual persons and authors, sects or religions, sacred works, forms and movements in the visual arts, types of organizations and names of individual organizations and individual wars, for works discussing their influence.

  • Examples:
  • Christianity–Influence.
  • Art, Byzantine–Influence.
  • Metaphysical school (Art movement)—Influence. Missions— Africa –Influence.
  • World War, 1939-1945–Influence. Harvard University .
  • Graduate School of Design—Influence.

The subdivision “Influence” is not further subdivided by history, period or topical subdivisions. These other aspects are brought out by assigning additional subject headings. Also an additional subject heading is assigned for the person or topic influenced.

  • Example:
  • Title: The influence of Hegel on Marx.
  • Marx, Karl, 1818-1883.
  • Hegel, Georg Friedrich, 1770-1831–Influence .


2. The subdivision “… influences” is used for works discussing the cultural influences of a particular civilization on another. This subdivision is only used under headings for civilizations of particular places larger than cities, or under particular aspects of those civilizations, including art forms, literary forms, philosophies, intellectual life, etc., under ethnic groups, or under names of disciplines divided by place.

  • Examples:
  • Japan —Civilization–Zen influences.
  • Civilization–Jewish influences.
  • Mural painting and decoration, Medieval–Byzantine influences.
  • English literature–Italian influences.
  • Japan–Intellectual life–Western influences.
  • Medicine— Germany –Dutch influences.
  • Indians of North America –African influences.

Specific time periods of the influenced civilization or the special aspect of a civilization are brought out by assigning additional headings.

  • Example:
  • Title: American and French culture, 1850-1900.
  • United States —Civilization–French influences.
  • France —Civilization–American influences.
  • United States —Civilization–19th century.
  • France —Civilization–1830-1900.

3. The subdivision “Foreign influences” is used under the same headings under which “… influences” is used, for works discussing general outside cultural influences.

  • Examples:
  • Great Britain —Civilization–Foreign influences.
  • Art, Japanese–Foreign influences.
  • American fiction–Foreign influences.
  • Indians of North America –Foreign influences.

Again specific time periods of the influenced civilization are brought out with additional subject heading.

  • Examples:
  • Title: Foreign influences on Meiji Japanese art.
  • Art, Japanese–Meiji period, 1868-1912.
  • Art, Japanese–Foreign influences.

Please note that the influence of one topic on another that is not covered above, is brought out by using the subdivision “Effect of […] on.” These are established individually in the subject heading thesaurus.

  • Example:
  • Body temperature—Effect of drugs on.

Also there are special provisions for the use of the subdivision “Influence” under sacred works and under individual literary authors.