Re: [RDA-L] Collective RDA and PCC wisdom sought

Posting to RDA-L

On 22/02/2017 09:10, Hal Cain (via rda-l Mailing List) wrote:

I cannot read the phrase “of Dante Alighieri” as a statement of responsibility.  Otherwise you might say the same of “The Gospel of Matthew” — which would be absurd.  If responsibility were being emphasized, it would be “by” not “of”; and you would have to treat “The works of Cardinal John Newman” or “The complete works of Aristotle” similarly.  What we have is a noun with an adjectival phrase, explaining what the noun refers to.

I don’t know if I agree with this, there seems to me little doubt that the purpose of “Dante Alighieri” is to show who wrote (i.e. is responsible for) the book. But it seems as if this is a great place for “cataloger’s judgment.”  Whatever is picked for the 245$a, there should also be an added title because either side can be correct.

If “Convivio” and Dante”, presented together as Adam shows us, are divided, then recognition by the catalogue user is impaired.  If a short, standardized form of title is desired, that’s what a preferred title, formerly uniform title, (Convivio) provides.

Concerning  what the catalog users recognize, my experience has shown me that they neither understand nor care about such details, whether “of” or “by” or nothing at all is used. In fact, such trivialities serve as the stuff of jokes about cataloging and catalogers.

In catalogs that display the entire 245 string (as lots of catalogs do) users will notice no difference at all except for the inclusion, or omission, of “/” if the catalog uses ISBD punctuation, that is, for the rare user who notices the “/” at all.

For other catalogs that do not display the 245$c, such as Worldcat, they will see things such as:
Selected political speeches of Cicero
Author:     Marcus Tullius Cicero; Michael Grant
Political speeches
Author:     Marcus Tullius Cicero; Dominic H Berry

which is just as irrelevant to a searcher who is interested in Cicero’s political speeches as the “/”.

I have seen in some catalogs, that the word “by” is always inserted before the 245$c in the public display, as we see in Worldcat in the multiple display:, e.g.
Political speeches
by Marcus Tullius Cicero; Dominic H Berry

Selected political speeches of Cicero
by Marcus Tullius Cicero; Michael Grant

Lend me your ears : great speeches in history
by William Safire;

Therefore, it looks as if catalog displays will always be unpredictable for the user, while catalogers will work from more technical displays.