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Library and Information Science Paper (ID LIS069047)

Development of the Concept of Facet in Ranganathan's Writings
No.69, p.47-81
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Purpose: This study discusses the development of the concept of facet in Ranganathan’s writings.

Method: Each writing of Ranganathan was chronologically investigated.

Results: The writings of Ranganathan on‘ facet’ can be divided into three phases. In the first phase, the concept of facet and the facet formula were established. The Colon Classification(CC) has two characteristics :(1) it adopts a notation consisting of plural independent elements, and(2) each element constitutes a facet. In the second phase, the concept of the fundamental category was modified. In the past, it was assumed that the fundamental category serves as a guide that a classifier uses in facet analysis. As the need to deal with detailed and complex subjects gradually increased, a new role was assigned to the fundamental category so that it could manifest a large number of facets. However, the use of the fundamental category also resulted in a new problem: consistency in classification practice could not be maintained. In the third phase, Ranganathan proposed a solution to this problem by using postulates and principles. In this phase, he also attempted to clarify the relationship between faceted classification and analytico-synthetic classification and the position of the CC in existing classifications. However, he changed his idea in each writing. This is because Ranganathan was not able to clearly distinguish among three points of view: the two characteristics(1) and(2) of CC and(3) classification enables facet analysis and synthesis of notations.

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