Implications of Five Laws of Library Science on Dr. S. R. Ranganathan's Colon Classification: An Explorative Study

  • Received : 2011.10.15
  • Accepted : 2011.11.27
  • Published : 2011.11.30


There have been several milestones in the history of library classification but most of the schemes failed to meet the new challenges in the organisation of information. Dr. S. R. Ranganathan tried to revolutionise the whole thinking on classificatory approach, when he devised the Colon Classification (CC) in 1933. He developed the Colon Classification scheme with a sound theoretical background based on normative principles, Five laws of Library science, canons, etc. One important feature of CC is that, its use is not confined to information storage and retrieval alone. This paper presents an over view of different editions of the CC highlighting the salient features of the editions. Further the implication of Five Laws of Library Science has been described. The authors stressed that the features of such as greater hospitality, specificity and mixed notation has paved the way to design and develop the depth schedules on various micro level subjects and so far about 130 micro schedules have been published. The impressions by the leading LIS professionals during and after Ranganathan's time have been highlighted. The authors expressed the fear that when the library world would see the complete version of the seventh edition of CC? It may be due to lack of institutional support engaging in the research or financial constraints. The authors are of the opinion that any scheme to flourish needs a sound research body to bring out the revised editions as done in the case of Dewey Decimal Classification. The relevance of the CC in the contemporary world of Librarianship is discussed. Finally concludes that CC needs to be resuscitated as it is a precious national heritage; and still a force for the management of libraries.


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