RDA Tip of the Week: Relationships

Many fields in RDA records now include relator terms to describe more precise relationships between entities in a consistent way. Some relators appear in a subfield at the end of the field:

100 1_ ǂa Green, John, ǂd 1977-, ǂe author.
700 1_ ǂa Bourguignon, Laurence, ǂe translator.

Some appear at the beginning of the field:

700 1_ ǂi Based on (work): ǂa Key, Watt. ǂt Fourmile.
700 1_ ǂi Abridgement of (expression): ǂa Hughes, Laurence P. ǂt Two.

There may even be two relator terms in one field:

100 1_ ǂa DeSerranno, Daniel, ǂd 1968- ǂe author, ǂe illustrator.
700 1_ ǂa Brooks, James L., ǂe director, ǂe producer.

Some relationships do not need extra relator terms in a MARC record, as they are already precisely described by MARC fields and indicators; for example, 7XX with second indicator 2:

700 12 ǂa Martel, Yann. ǂt Life of Pi.

indicates that the work in that field is contained in the main work described in the record.

Encoding these relationships is causing some difficulty now (some catalogs consider “Cai, Luo, ǂe author” to be a different person from “Cai, Luo”, for example) but they will be increasingly useful in a linked data environment.


Areawide land capabilities and natural resources utilization study, FIVCO ADD : Greenup, Boyd, Carter, Elliott, Lawrence / prepared by Mayes, Sudderth & Etheredge, Inc. (OCLC #871201008)

This large folded map shares most metadata (title, creator, date down to the month) with a book we already have in storage, though its record doesn’t mention an accompanying map of FIVCO (“the five county area”).

If I’d had both of these in hand initially, I probably would have cataloged them together, with a physical description like:

300 __ ‡a 62 pages ; ‡c 28 cm + ‡e 1 folded map.

(note the lack of period after the cm, that would have been there under AACR2!)

Substantive accompanying materal does justify a new record in OCLC, so I didn’t want to just tack it on to our local book record. I passed it on to our map cataloger, who added it to our map collection with its own original record.


Икота : мифологический персонаж в локальной традиции / Ольга Христофорова (OCLC #871437486)

This book about demonic possession (or “Demoniac Possession” in LCSH) has a title proper which also translates to “hiccups”. Though the two are linked, a bit of reading confirmed that the word had another specific meaning: the Slavic concept of “ikota” is similar to the Jewish “dybbuk”, both being spirits that possess and control people. (Hooray for subject cataloging to distinguish between the two!)

I am somewhat relieved that the book is about demons, because I wouldn’t know where to classify a non-fiction book primarily about hiccups in LC; maybe with other reflexes or spasms, or with the diaphragm? I searched OCLC and found only a few non-fiction works (none classed in LC); mostly I found folklore and juvenile fiction. With all due respect to the hiccupotamus, this seems like an oversight.


Environmental geology today / Robert L. McConnell, Daniel C. Abel. (OCLC #635477370)

More like Environmental geology tomorrow! Though we have had the book in hand since February 2014, it has copyright date 2015 (even on the publisher web site) and no stated publication date.

The OCLC BibFormats page for field 260 has a nice table that says: in the case where the book is received one year but only has a copyright date of the following year, it should be treated as having a single date (the copyright date).


The Munsell book of color. Matte collection. (OCLC #871204356)

This binder of color chips appears to be a classic tool for precisely communicating colors; the earliest version in OCLC is from 1929.

The copy I have in hand has no dates on it, and vendor web sites don’t mention when it was last revised. No records in OCLC quite matched it, and the differences were major enough to justify a new record in OCLC: slight change in subtitle, different tools included in a pocket, etc.

It is not surprising that there are so many new and different editions. The back of the binder has a blank to record the date you first use the book, so you can keep track of when it expires (two years later), ceasing to be a faithful representation of those colors, so the publisher may not keep a large stock of the current edition.