Geographic area codes are assigned in bibliographic records to bring out by code the geographic areas that appear or are implied in the headings assigned to the work being cataloged.  Generally, codes are assigned for headings in a subject added entry for a geographic name (field 651) or headings in other fields which contain a geographic subdivision (subfield $z).  Codes are also assigned for headings representing ethnic groups, nationalities, civilizations, topics qualified by ethnic groups or nationalities, individual named entities including corporate bodies, and events.

Geographic area codes may be included in authority records for geographic areas associated with the established heading of the record.

The following guidelines describe application of the codes in specific situations:

Geographic entities (General).  The appropriate code for a geographic feature, region, or jurisdiction is assigned, if such a code exists.

Local entities.  For a local geographic feature, region, or jurisdiction, the appropriate code for the country or first order political division in which the entity is located is assigned.  Separate codes for the first order political divisions of the following countries have been provided:  Australia, Canada, China, Great Britain, and the United States.  Codes have also been provided for some individual regions within Russia (Federation).  For any work dealing with one of these regions as a whole, the indicated code is assigned.  For an entity, such as a city, located within one of these regions, the code for the corresponding republic is assigned instead.

Entities located in several countries.  For an entity located in several countries, codes are assigned for each country, or for a larger encompassing region.  If an entity is located in several first order political divisions, for countries having separate codes for political divisions, codes are assigned for each division.

Historic jurisdictions, empires, kingdoms, etc.  Codes are assigned that correspond to modern-day jurisdictions or areas, generally coding for the greatest territorial extent of these entities.  For works that discuss a jurisdiction during a period when its territory was more limited and for works focusing on a specific location within a historical jurisdiction, the appropriate code for the particular place is assigned.

Parts of regions.  When a work deals with both a large geographic region for which a specific code exists and a locality within the region, code for both the region and the locality.  If a single, specific code does not exist for the region, code only for the part of the region covered by the work.

Multiple area orientation.  When a work deals with several geographical locations, a code is assigned for each or for a larger encompassing region.

Ethnic groups, nationalities, civilizations, etc.  Codes are assigned for the jurisdictions or areas where ethnic groups, etc. are located.  For an individual element in the population, a code is assigned only for the present locality, not the place of origin, as long as the people are citizens or permanent residents.

Foreign members of a population.  Codes are assigned for both the place of origin and current location of peoples who are in an area other than their permanent homeland, including travelers, temporary residents, aliens, and foreign students.

Influence of one nation on another.  For the impact of one place on another, codes are assigned for both places.

Special topics modified by names of ethnic groups or nationalities.  A code is assigned for the jurisdiction or areas where the ethnic group or nationality is located.  If the work is limited to a special locality, a code is assigned only for that locality.  If the work deals with an area outside of the area normally associated with the people, codes are assigned for both places.

Language.  When assigning a code for language (usually only if the work deals with geographic aspects of the language), a code is assigned for the location of the language.  No code is assigned to grammars, textbooks for learning a language, histories of linguistic changes such as changes in phonology, etc.  No code is assigned to a work if the subject heading assigned is intended to bring out the language of a publication.

Named entities.  Codes are assigned for the location of individual named entities, including corporate bodies, buildings and structures, roads, waterways, railroads, monuments, camps, parks, gardens, etc.  For government agencies, codes are assigned for the jurisdictions the agencies serve.

Events, exhibitions, movements, etc.  A code is assigned for the location of the occurrence.

Biography and genealogy.  Codes are assigned to works of biography (individual or collective) and to works of genealogy, for the location of the individual, group, or family if geographic areas are localized.

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