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UDC/DDC harmonization project. Religion Ia McIlwaine Chair, UDC Consortium. Why Religion?. In 2000 UDC published totally new scheme Attempts universal approach No Christian predominance Historical reflection of development

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UDC/DDC harmonization project

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Udc ddc harmonization project

UDC/DDC harmonization project


Ia McIlwaine

Chair, UDC Consortium


Why religion

Why Religion?

In 2000 UDC published totally new scheme

  • Attempts universal approach

  • No Christian predominance

  • Historical reflection of development

    DDC pronounced Christian bias, accompanied by a range of options to overcome this

    Is looking for simplification and modernization


Nature of udc

Nature of UDC

  • Main Table plus

  • Range of auxiliaries

    Common forms, Time, Place, Language, Race, Persons

  • Also

    Common Properties, Activities, Materials


Examples of recurring concepts

Examples of recurring concepts








Facet indicators in udc

Facet Indicators in UDC

+ / : all used to combine separate numbers

= Language

(0…) Common forms

(1/9) Place

(=…) Ethnic groupings & nationality

“…” Time

-0 Commonly recurring concepts – -02 Properties, -03 Materials, -04 Activities &c, -05 Persons


Facet indicators

Facet indicators

Also special auxiliaries for recurring concepts within a specific subject field

– e.g. -1/-9 Literary forms in class 82 - Literature

.0 e.g. .03 Styles in Class 7 –Fine Arts

‘ e.g. Alloys in Metallurgy, 669

669.35’5’6 – Copper-zinc-tin alloys (combining 3 separate numbers)


Other features of udc

Other features of UDC

The ability to join two (or more) numbers together to create a compound notation

Use of alphabetical notation

Many compound concepts do not appear in the schedules, except as “Examples of combination”


Examples of combination

Examples of combination

005.92:004.63Management of electronic records

504.4:551.515.3Hurricane damage

601.2:576.31Morphological behaviour


Special auxiliaries

Special auxiliaries

Tables, applicable only within a stated set of numbers

(usually a discipline, or subdiscipline)

not universally applicable (so reusing the same notation)

Examples :

styles in art

literary forms


2 religion theology

2 Religion. Theology

21 Prehistoric and primitive religions

22 Religions originating in the Far East

23 Religions originating in Indian sub-continent

24 Buddhism

25 Religions of antiquity. Minor cults and religions

26 Judaism

27 Christianity. Christian churches and denominations

28 Islam

29 Modern spiritual movements


Special auxiliaries in class 2

Special auxiliaries in Class 2

2-1 Theory and philosophy of religion. Nature of religion. Phenomenon of religion

2-2 Evidences of religion

2-3Persons in religion

2-4 Religious activities. Religious practice

2-5 Worship broadly. Cult. Rites and ceremonies

2-6 Processes in religion

2-7 Religious organization and administration

2-8 Religions characterised by various properties

2-9 History of the faith, religion, denomination or church


Examples of application

Examples of application

26-454-242Teaching in the Torah on divorce



-242Torah. The Law. The Pentateuch

27-528-274.6Scriptural authority of Christian liturgy



-274.6Authority of Scripture


Differential facets

Differential facets

These are necessary for concepts peculiar to one faith only, normally by expanding a base number from the Auxiliary table, e.g. to provide a different sequence for books of the Bible in Judaism from that in Christianity


Ddc s solution

DDC’s solution

Option A:

Class the religion in 230–280, its sources in 220, comprehensive works on the religion in 230;

in that case class the Bible and Christianity in 298


Ddc s solution1

DDC’s solution

Option B: Class in 210, and add to base number 21 the numbers following the base number for the religion in 292–299, e.g., Hinduism 210, Mahabharata 219.23; in that case class philosophy and theory of religion in 200, its subdivisions 211–218 in 201–208, specific aspects of comparative religion in 200.1–200.9, standard subdivisions of religion in 200.01–200.09


Ddc s solution2

DDC’s solution

Option C: Class in 291, and add to base number 291 the numbers following the base number for that religion in 292–299, e.g., Hinduism 291, Mahabharata 291.923

Option D: Class in 298, which is permanently unassigned


Ddc s solution3

DDC’s solution

Option E: Place first by use of a letter or other symbol, e.g., Hinduism 2H0 (preceding 220), or 29H (preceding 291 or 292); add to the base number thus derived, e.g., to 2H or to 29H, the numbers following the base number for the religion in 292–299, e.g., Shivaism 2H5.13 or 29H.513


Ddc s solution4

DDC’s solution

Option A vacates the numbers devoted to Christianity for use by another religion. Options B and C provide preferred treatment (and shorter or equivalent numbers) for a specific religion. Both explicitly derive notation directly from the schedules for the preferred arrangement.


Ddc s solution5

DDC’s solution

Option D provides preferred treatment and shorter numbers for a specific religion by relocating it to 298, a permanently unassigned number. Option E provides preferred treatment (and shorter or equivalent numbers) for a specific religion. Option E also uses notation derived from the schedules, but introduces the use of mixed notation.


Ddc s solution6

DDC’s solution

Each of these options presents some problems and none gives the opportunity to provide an even-handed approach to the great religions of the world


Ddc survey

DDC survey

56 responses from 13 countries

9 used one of the options

None used D or E

So, wholesale replacement of these options by one alternative arrangement under consideration perhaps using UDC as a model


Mapping at major religion level

Mapping at major religion level

23 Religions of the Indian 294Indic religions

Subcontinent Hindu religion in

the broad sense 294.5 Hinduism

231Vedism294.509013 Vedic religion

232Brahmanism294.5(in class here note)

233Hinduism narrowly294.5Hinduism

234Jainism294.4 Jainism

235 Sikhism294.6Sikhism


. . .. . .


Mapping at major religion level1

Mapping at major religion level




(UDC – blue; DDC -green)

Both schemes place general topics of religion first - these have not been touched yet




UDC provides different notations for Jewish and Christian Bible, so even same book, e.g. Psalms, Genesis, Exodus, will have different numbers

DDC puts Bible ahead of both Christianity and Judaism – this to remain at present – other solutions may be explored later


Rearrangement of ddc

Rearrangement of DDC







Yoruba (African people) – religion(299.68333)


Ras Tafari(299.676)







Udc ddc harmonization project


“New religions” or “minor religions” are collocated with their origin, where relevant, otherwise the root number is extended geographically, then chronologically, hence the placing of, e.g. Wicca, Ras Tafari


Buddhism as a case study

Buddhism as a case study

UDC base number 24 + DDC notation

DDC 294.333 Buddhist mythology =



  • Moves to chronological position

  • Retains DDC number building & internal/auxilary tables

  • Meaningless notation in either system

  • Retains limited development


Buddhism case study 2 detailed mapping

Buddhism Case Study 2: Detailed Mapping




  • Structural differences and inconsistencies in both systems

  • Differences in enumeration/synthesis

  • Differences in main religion auxiliary table

  • Differences in common auxiliaries




UDC expansion developed using DDC’s concepts (but not order)

No problem in creating notations, but order differs dramatically

Differences in common auxiliaries also create a problem






28-441Taharah. Mental and physical purification

28-442Food and diet

28-442-027.568Halal. Permitted food

28-442.2-027.583Haram. Forbidden food

28-442-426.4 Fasting

28-442.5Rules concerning specific foods and drinks

28-442.5:636.4 Pork

28-442.5:663.2/.5Rules concerning alcoholic drinks


Fundamental problems that need to be addressed

Fundamental problems that need to be addressed

28-442Food & diet



(The -0 numbers are from Common auxiliary of Common Properties)

:636.4Pork (from class 63)

:663.2/.5Alcoholic drinks (from 66)

Note 663.2 to 663.5 specify a range of alcoholic drinks, expressed by using the slash for consecutive numbers


Greater detail in udc

Greater detail in UDC

28-426Objects in worship. Furnishings and decorations

28-526.1Furniture. Platforms Lecterns

28-526.1-032.2 Fountains

28-526.11Dikka. Platform

28-526.13Minbar. Pulpit

28-526.15Kursi. Lectern

28-526.4Tasbih. Subhah. Beads


Greater detail in udc1

Greater detail in UDC

28-565Major fasts and festivals

28-565.5Rajab (7th month of Islamic year)

28-565.51Laylat al-Mi’raj (‘Night of the Ascent’ of Muhammed into heaven) (Rajab 27th)

28-565.6Ramadan. Month of fasting (9th month of Islamic year)

28-565.62Laylat al Qadr. ‘Night of Power’ (commemorating the sending down of the Koran to Muhammed) (Ramadan 27th)

28-565.7Shawwal (10th month of Islamic year)

28-565.71‘Id al-Adha. Feast of the Breaking of the fast (Shawwal 1st)

28-565.8Dhu-l-Hijja (12th month of Islamic year)

28-565.81Annual pilgrimage ceremonies in and near Mecca (Dhu-l-Hijja 8th-13th)

28-565.83‘Id al-Adha. Feast of the Sacrifice. ‘Id al-Hajj. Feast of the Pilgrimage (Dhu-l-Hijja 10th)


Same concepts in ddc

Same concepts in DDC

No detail for physical contents of mosques and festivals are handled thus:


297 36 special days and seasons

297.36Special days and seasons

Including Jum'ah (Friday prayer); `Ashura' (Tenth of Muharram); Mawlid al-Nabi (Prophet's birthday); `Id al-Adha, `Id al-Fitr

Class here rites and ceremonies associated with special days and seasons, Islamic religious calendar

See also 297.37 for sermons for special days and seasons

297.362Sawm Ramadan (Annual fast of Ramamadan)

Including Laylat al-Qadr

Class comprehensive works on fasting in 297.53


Conclusions to date

Conclusions to date

  • Basic overall arrangement can easily be implemented

  • This will create greater interoperability

  • Improve the structure of both schemes

  • UDC framework works at basic level for DDC

  • Level of detail more problematical, and needs to be resolved


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