Relationship designators

A very important feature of RDA is the provision of relationship designators. These are terms added to entities in MARC records to specify the relationships between all the entities defined by FRBR/RDA. They replace the relator codes that were part of AACR2 but were infrequently used. Because relationships play such an important role in RDA, the relationship designators do as well.

Relationship designators that go after a name entity go in subfield $e (except when attached to the 111 and 711 [meeting names] fields, in which case they go in subfield $j). When the relationship designator records the relationship between works, expressions, manifestations, or items, it precedes the entity in the MARC field and goes in subfield “$i”.

Relationship designators are commonly attached to people and specify a relationship between a person and a resource. The terms to be used in this case are found in appendix I. For example, the record of a book written by Ed Smith, edited by Linda Jones and Frank Simmons, translated by Albert Wang, and illustrated by Leslie Brown might have the following fields:

100 1# Smith, Ed, $d 1967- $e author.
245 10 This old book / $c by Ed Smith
700 1# Wang, Albert, $e translator.
700 1# Brown, Leslie, $d 1981-, $e illustrator.
700 1# Jones, Linda $d 1965- $e editor.
700 1# Simmons, Frank $d 1945- $e editor.

All these personal name entries now specifically “relate” to the title in the 245 field. An example of relationship designators given for a film might be as follows:

700 1# Hecht, Ben, $d 1893-1964, $e screenwriter, $e director, $e producer.
710 2# Miramax Films, $e production company.
710 2# Miramax Home Entertainment (Firm), $e production company.

There are a wide variety of relationship designators. Some can give information about the physical book itself (this example is from LC).

700 1# Morrison, Jarrett $q (Jarrett Stephen), $d 1973- $e wood-engraver.
700 1# Rimmer, Jim, $e compositor.
710 2# Bowler Press, $e printer.
710 2# Press and Letterfoundry of Michael & Winifred Bixler, $e compositor.
710 2# Wookey Hole Mill, $e papermaker.

Relationships can also exist between works, expressions, manifestations, and items. The terms used to describe these relationships are found in Appendix J and include terms such as “abridgement of,” “remake of,” “adapted as,” “basis for libretto,” “concordance,” “supplement to,” and many, many others. The resource that is in relationship to the resource that is in the 1XX/245 fields goes in the 7xx field as an authorized access point with the relationship designator preceding it. (Some of this same information is found in the note fields in AACR2; notes are of course still allowed in RDA) Let’s consider a record for a movie of Pride and Prejudice. In AACR2, our record might include these fields:

500 $a Based on the novel by Jane Austen.
700 1# $a Austen, Jane, $d 1775‐1817. $t Pride and prejudice

In RDA we might find this:

700 1# $i motion picture adaptation of (work) $a Austen, Jane, $d 1775‐ 1817. $t Pride and prejudice

Here we see the relationship designator followed by the authorized access point for Pride and Prejudice. The relationship designators between WEMI can work reciprocally as well, so a record for the book Pride and Prejudice might have an added entry with “adapted as a motion picture” followed by the name of the film. Note the “$i” subfield for the relationship designator.

Sometimes, a relationship between two WEMI entities does not need a relationship designator to specify a relationship:

100 1# $a Shakespeare, William, $d 1564-1616.
245 10 $a Hamlet ; $b King Lear / $c William Shakespeare.
700 12 $a Shakespeare, William, $d 1564-1616. $t Hamlet.
700 12 $a Shakespeare, William, $d 1564-1616. $t King Lear.

Here, the second indicator “2” in the 700 fields indicates that this is an “analytical entry” – i.e., the resource in the 245 field “contains” the resources in the 700 fields.

The other types of relationships for which relationship designators may be used are those between people, families, and corporate bodies (Appendix K), which would be likely to go in name authority records, and relationships between subjects, which have not yet been set by RDA.

It should be noted that LC only requires one relationship designator: “illustrator” when used for an expression intended to children. But it is likely that we will see many more relationship designators than this.


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