You are correct, RDA only recognizes the “in series” relationship as a whole-part work level relationship. This works for most series. However, it seems evident that certain series have a much stronger relationship to the expression of a work. Loeb Classical Library is one example. People think of “the Loeb edition of the Aeneid” or “the Loeb translation of Aeneid” or whatever classical author or work. It is not helpful to them to link the series “Loeb classical library” to the work “Virgil. Aeneis”, which simply conveys that somewhere in the corpus of expressions of the Aeneid one of the expressions is in the Loeb classical library. It serves the user in this case to link the actual expression to the series, and it is, in fact, not really helpful to link the work to the series.


This is an expression to work relationship. At the moment, RDA doesn’t recognize any expression to work relationship (it’s not just confined to series) between different works. And yet such relationships do exist and are important. The RSC Relationship Designators Working Group is proposing to remedy this. We’ll see how that plays at the RSC meeting next month, and how it works out in terms later RDA revisions.


Meanwhile, as a classicist it is my opinion that certain translations and editions of classical authors are so closely tied to specific series that it is important to record the relationship; this is probably true of other types of series as well.




Robert L. Maxwell
Ancient Languages and Special Collections Librarian
6728 Harold B. Lee Library
Brigham Young University
Provo, UT 84602

"We should set an example for all the world, rather than confine ourselves to the course which has been heretofore pursued"--Eliza R. Snow, 1842.


From: Program for Cooperative Cataloging [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Lammert, Richard
Sent: Thursday, October 13, 2016 9:07 AM
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: "In series": using J.2.4 Whole-Part Work Relationships


RDA J.2.4, "Whole-Part Work Relationships," provides for the "in series" relationship. This is in section J.2, "Relationship Designators for Related Works" (my emphasis). Thus, a work can be part of a series, but an expression cannot be (in fact, RDA provides for no relationships that I can see relating expressions to works--unless I have missed something, which is entirely possible).


This becomes important in the real world in the way in which series are commonly viewed. Although the relationship as spelled out in RDA works in many cases, in some cases, it contradicts the way in which people think of series relationships.


Take, as an example, a Latin work by the author "Sine nomine," whose work "Opus magnum" is published in the Loeb classical library. Reading RDA closely (or rigidly, if you prefer), the following relationship is possible:

100 0  Sine nomine. $t Opus magnum

530  0 $i In series: $a Loeb classical library $w r


However, both of the following authorities make a relationship between an expression and a work, and therefore these relationships cannot be made according to J.2.4:


100 0  Sine nomine. $t Opus magnum. $l Latin $s (Loeb classical library)

530  0 $i In series: $a Loeb classical library $w r




100 0  Sine nomine. $t Opus magnum. $l English $s (Brown)

530  0 $i In series: $a Loeb classical library $w r


Is this close (or rigid) reading of RDA correct, or is there some provision I have missed for relating expressions to works? Or is this a case where RDA does not reflect the real world?


Richard Lammert


Rev. Richard A. Lammert           e-mail: [log in to unmask]
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