Did Denominational Tags Make it into L9?

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David Wanat | Forum Activity | Posted: Tue, Oct 27 2020 7:36 PM

Before L9 dropped, we were told FL was looking into denominational tags. Did that make it into L9?

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MJ. Smith | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Oct 27 2020 7:46 PM

Partially - see it partially implemented in the revised Commentary Section of the Passage Guide and in the Authors section of the Factbook denomination entry. It is in the code but tagging still needs to be completed. Pointing out errors in how a person is classified is very useful to Sean right now.

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Blair Laird | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Oct 27 2020 7:54 PM

I think it's a difficult thing because authors can change their denomination over time. This means that something previously is written might be viewed differently if they change their denomination affiliation. Each book would need to be treated on its own rather than the author to be accurate. I am not sure what percentage of authors change denominations over time but I know it could cause an issue in tagging. I was curious if the possibility was taken into considerations. Perhaps it's such a low percentage that it is a non-issue 

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MJ. Smith | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Oct 27 2020 8:14 PM

Blair Laird:
I think it's a difficult thing because authors can change their denomination over time.

Blair, you are too much like me. Get over it. Wink Yes, you are absolutely correct. However, a group of users got together and classified a large number of authors to their satisfaction. They believed they had proven that it was possible. I thought they had proven what standards would satisfy them. Given the standards that it is appropriate to hold computer-generated, mid-range AI to, I believe you and I are right that there are authors who are difficult to impossible to classify and "they" are right that it can be done sufficiently well to be helpful and well-received.

Meanwhile I will consider the classification plight of 3 scholars who changed denominations after retirement in order to retire to the monastery of their choice.

Orthodox Bishop Hilarion Alfeyev: "To be a theologian means to have experience of a personal encounter with God through prayer and worship."

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abondservant | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Oct 27 2020 8:23 PM

MJ. Smith:

Meanwhile I will consider the classification plight of 3 scholars who changed denominations after retirement in order to retire to the monastery of their choice.



haha I agree that there are some who are complicated.

In that case, they should be whatever tradition they were when they wrote that particular title - a thing Logos can do now that its being handled by them, things the community couldn't do with the broad strokes of a collection rule.

I do agree with you though.

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SineNomine | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Oct 27 2020 8:23 PM

Blair Laird:
Perhaps it's such a low percentage that it is a non-issue 

I think it's worth thinking about.

Offhand I can think of G. K. Chesterton, St. John Henry Newman, Scott Hahn, C. S. Lewis, Metropolitan Kallistos Ware, and Jaroslav Pelikan as well-known convert authors who FL carries. I know FL carries both pre- and post- conversion works from Chesterton, Newman, and Lewis; I believe there's one from Ware, and probably also some from Pelikan. I don't think Hahn published anything before his conversion. I'm pretty sure all of these are better known as members of their destination ecclesial community (respectively, Catholic, Catholic, Catholic, Anglican, Orthodox, Orthodox) than wherever they were before (Anglican, Anglican, Presbyterian, atheist, Anglican, Lutheran), and the only one I'd potentially flag as it mattering that his pre-conversion work be findable according to his pre-conversion label is St. John Henry Newman, but, realistically, you can't look all that much at 19th century Anglicanism without running into him in short order, so it's not a big deal from my perspective.

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SineNomine | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Oct 27 2020 8:24 PM

MJ. Smith:
Meanwhile I will consider the classification plight of 3 scholars who changed denominations after retirement in order to retire to the monastery of their choice.

Does Faithlife carry their works?

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Blair Laird | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Oct 27 2020 8:32 PM

Yes I would certainly rather have the tagging then say it’s too difficult because of changing theology. There are certainly people who are easy to categorize. Its difficult with a cross denominational library to check where each person I am reading is coming from. It would be cool if the authors info could  be incorporated so you can click and see their education or past and present affiliations. The denominational tagging is essential for me when I want to know how a particular group views a certain doctrine. Without the tagging searching that info is hard. 

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PetahChristian | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Oct 27 2020 8:45 PM

I'd like to see the denominational (and theological) metadata exposed in the library (to simplify or eliminate collection rules).

MJ. Smith:
Meanwhile I will consider the classification plight of 3 scholars who changed denominations after retirement in order to retire to the monastery of their choice.

I don't see that as much of a plight as fascinating trivia. Good for them!

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MJ. Smith | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Oct 27 2020 10:57 PM

SineNomine:
Does Faithlife carry their works?

At least one of them, another is likely to be added.

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Sean Boisen | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, Oct 28 2020 9:06 AM

MJ. Smith:

Partially - see it partially implemented in the revised Commentary Section of the Passage Guide and in the Authors section of the Factbook denomination entry. It is in the code but tagging still needs to be completed. Pointing out errors in how a person is classified is very useful to Sean right now.

We're very grateful for the work of the forum users who contributed a lot of data on authors and their denominational associations.

In addition to MJ's point about grouping commentaries, we now have Factbook pages for a large number of denominations (specific organizations) and denomination groups (less formal groupings of affiliated denominations, like Baptists and Methodism). We've also built a fair amount of hierarchical organization of denominations and denomination groups: currently the See Also section of a denomination group shows links to the narrower specific denominations, and when breadcrumbs are added (coming soon), you'll be able to go the other direction, from a specific denomination to its broader denomination group. As MJ suggests, we're still both correcting and adding denominational affiliations for authors. Like everything else in Factbook, this will be ongoing work for the foreseeable future: Factbook really won't ever be "done" because we keep adding resources, authors, new connections between data, etc. 

We're also adding subject references to resources to indicate book-level primary subjects: so for my library the Factbook page for Baptists shows a few resources under Books from Your Library that are broadly about the Baptists. We still have a lot more annotation to do here, but these new denomination concepts will be used for subject references to help in discovering new content. 

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David Wanat | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, Oct 28 2020 9:19 AM

MJ. Smith:

Meanwhile I will consider the classification plight of 3 scholars who changed denominations after retirement in order to retire to the monastery of their choice.

I'd like to hear the story on that

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David Ames | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, Oct 28 2020 2:16 PM

abondservant:

they should be whatever tradition they were when they wrote that particular title

Question: What denomination are ones writings in during the last few years before one officially / publicly switches?

The one they were in or the one that their ideas were moving towards?

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Jan Krohn | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, Oct 28 2020 2:38 PM

Both.

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MJ. Smith | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, Oct 28 2020 3:40 PM

David Wanat:
I'd like to hear the story on that

The best known is Jaroslav Pelikan who wrote as a Lutheran although most thought he sounded Catholic and retired Eastern Orthodox. See wikipedia for a very brief account. Okay, he didn't literally enter a monastery .

The next best known in George Maloney, S.J. I can't find his obituary or biography at the moment but he's the one who literally explained it as a retirement decision as he knew of no Eastern Rite retirement monastic settings for the Eastern Rite ... only the Latin.  See ...http://www.byzcath.org/forums/ubbthreads.php/topics/140626/Re:%20Fr.%20George%20Maloney,%20vichna

The third spent some time as an Anglican but I'm drawing a blank on his name..

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Jan Krohn | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, Oct 28 2020 5:29 PM

Some more converts that come to my mind with works in Logos (albeit mostly monographs), Hank Hanegraaff (Evangelical to Eastern Orthodox), Robert Spencer (Evangelical to Eastern Orthodox), Stephen Ray (Evangelical to Catholic).

Most (if not all) reformers should have started off as Catholic, but I suspect that if they started writing before their conversion, that would be negligible. In fact, any founder of a new church is likely to have converted at some point, when the newly founded church split off from their old denomination. Whether, for example, the Wesleys, or Count Zinzendorf, or John Nelson Darby, or Stone and Campbell wrote any substantial works before their conversion would be a matter of research.

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Sean Boisen | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, Oct 28 2020 5:35 PM

Jan Krohn:

Some more converts that come to my mind with works in Logos (albeit mostly monographs), Hank Hanegraaff (Evangelical to Eastern Orthodox), Robert Spencer (Evangelical to Eastern Orthodox), Stephen Ray (Evangelical to Catholic).

Most (if not all) reformers should have started off as Catholic, but I suspect that if they started writing before their conversion, that would be negligible. In fact, any founder of a new church is likely to have converted at some point, when the newly founded church split off from their old denomination. Whether, for example, the Wesleys, or Count Zinzendorf, or John Nelson Darby, or Stone and Campbell wrote any substantial works before their conversion would be a matter of research.

It's a good point, and we've made an editorial decision to generally associate authors with the denomination they're most known for. For example, Wesley started out as an Anglican, but most people would expect to see his works categorized under Methodism. But for more modern conversion examples, we'll probably assign both denominations rather than try to find a line where e.g. an Evangelical became a Catholic.

There are limits to how much you can do with this categorization: it's primarily a tool for filtering and grouping resources, not a fine-grained assessment of the content of individual resources.

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abondservant | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, Oct 28 2020 7:09 PM

David Ames:

abondservant:

they should be whatever tradition they were when they wrote that particular title

Question: What denomination are ones writings in during the last few years before one officially / publicly switches?

The one they were in or the one that their ideas were moving towards?



If they are merely changing for the view, then their original denomination.

If the theological underpinnings of their point of view shifted dramatically (like the Bible Answer Man becoming orthodox); then I still think they have to be listed as whatever the author was when he wrote. Its never going to be perfect.

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Ken McGuire | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, Oct 28 2020 7:34 PM

MJ. Smith:
The best known is Jaroslav Pelikan who wrote as a Lutheran although most thought he sounded Catholic and retired Eastern Orthodox.

In many ways he had been Eastern leaning for his whole career. One of the special things about The Christian Tradition (and we still need to get that into Logos some day) is his 2nd volume where he gives an amazingly detailed examination of the development of the Eastern Church - something that was quite unique at the time. And I heard that back in the 1950s he was even pushing the Eastern fathers when teaching a Concordia St Louis.

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Rosie Perera | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, Oct 28 2020 7:47 PM

Blair Laird:

I think it's a difficult thing because authors can change their denomination over time. This means that something previously is written might be viewed differently if they change their denomination affiliation. Each book would need to be treated on its own rather than the author to be accurate. I am not sure what percentage of authors change denominations over time but I know it could cause an issue in tagging. I was curious if the possibility was taken into considerations. Perhaps it's such a low percentage that it is a non-issue 

It's a good thing I'm not an author, because I've gone through at least four denominations in my lifetime: was baptized in an Episcopalian church, raised in a Congregational church, made my first adult decision to join a church in a Presbyterian church, attended a transdenominational seminary with Baptists, Anglicans, Pentecostals, Presbyterians, Reformed leaning Catholic, Christian & Missionary Alliance, and a Mennonite on the faculty (and probably others I'm forgetting), and am now a Mennonite/Anabaptist with an appreciation for the good things that many other traditions have contributed to my ecumenical faith. I think it's important to be deeply rooted and grounded in one particular tradition that you worship in, but be able to dialogue freely with and learn from others, and not necessarily limit your viewpoints to just the statement of faith of your particular denomination. Some denominations are less doctrinaire anyway and encompass people with a variety of beliefs on certain points of theology. John Stott, for example, was an Anglican Evangelical all his life, but admitted some agnosticism about his belief on hell as a perpetual state of torment, allowing for the possibility of annihilationism.

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