BIC Subject Categories and Qualifiers

This is BIC’s Subject Categories and Qualifiers Scheme, version 2.1 released November 2010, the standard classification scheme for the UK book trade and some other English language markets, available from

Note that BIC has announced that there will be no further development of the BIC scheme, and that Thema is its preferred subject scheme for current and future use. Browse the latest version of the Thema international, multilingual subject category scheme here.

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Code Description
A The arts
See also: HPN “Aesthetics”
AF Art forms
Use AF* codes for ‘art book’ treatments. See also: WF “Handicrafts, decorative arts and crafts” for ‘how-to’ and hobbyist approaches
AFC Painting and paintings
AFF Drawing and drawings
AFH Prints and printmaking
AFJ Other graphic art forms
AFK Non-graphic art forms
AFP Ceramic arts, pottery, glass
See also: WFN “Pottery, ceramics and glass crafts”
AFT Decorative arts
Use for ‘art book’ approaches. See also: WF “Handicrafts, decorative arts and crafts” for ‘how-to’ and hobbyist approaches
AFW Textile artworks
See also: AKTX “Textile design and theory” for commercial art
AFY Body art and tattooing

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