Document (#11912)

Author
Riggs, F.W.
Title
Information and social science : the need for onomantics
Source
International forum on information and documentation. 14(1989) no.1, S.12-21
Year
1989
Abstract
The special language used by authors in writing up their research is differentiated into cryptic and delphic modes, depending on the ways the terms (names) for new concepts are produced. The 1st approach, characterstic of the language of natural and applied sciences, is based on the coining of absolutely new words (mainly acronyms) or word phrases. The 2nd one, widely applied by social scientists, relies on the assignment of new meanings to familiar terms. The latter confuses readers and hampers their understanding of the authors' ideas, making the precise indexing of social science publications dubious. Proposes a new, 'onomantic' approach that, in contrast to the conventional semantic paradigm, proceeds from the definition of a concept to identification of a corresponding unequivocal term, the final product being a dictionary of concepts, or 'nomenclator'.

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