How do I report an offensive term found in HOLLIS?

The language in Harvard's catalog records was created by librarians, publishers and vendors around the globe over many decades.

Some catalog information (subject headings, author names) forms part of a global, interconnected dictionary used by librarians to create a consistent experience for researchers. Other information comes from a variety of sources, including the author, publisher and librarians both at and beyond Harvard.

In recognition of our own responsibility and to honor our duty to the values of respect and inclusion, Harvard Library is committed to pursuing options to address any terms in Harvard's catalog that cause concern or offense to library users. 

Harvard Library will seek solutions with peer institutions and partners such as the Library of Congress Subject Authority Cooperative Program (SACO) to maintain the global directory and effect changes as widely as possible. Should those efforts fail, we are committed to seeking local solutions. 

If you would like to suggest a change to an offensive term in Harvard's catalog, please submit an inquiry through HOLLIS Feedback

Service Alert:
  • Ask a Librarian, including chat and email, will be suspended on Thursday, November 23 and Friday, November 24. Regular service hours resume on Saturday..
  • If If you're experiencing an ongoing technical issue when you attempt to access library materials with your HarvardKey during these times, please report it to Library Technology Services.


Monday-Thursday 9am-9pm



Sunday 12noon-7pm

Chat is intended for brief inquiries from the Harvard community.


Talk to a librarian for advice on defining your topic, developing your research strategy, and locating and using sources. Make an appointment now.

These services are intended primarily for Harvard University faculty, staff and students. If you are not affiliated with Harvard, please use these services only to request information about the Library and its collections.