11e Colloque international dISKO-France Epistemological and theoretical foundations

11e Colloque international dISKO-France Epistemological and theoretical foundations

11e Colloque international dISKO-France Epistemological and theoretical foundations of Information Documentation science: a tribute to francophone pioneers Reflections on Suzanne Briet Michael Buckland School of Information University of California, Berkeley Paris, July 11-12, 2017 July 11, 2017 ISKO France - Briet 1 Dead birds as documents 1988: Writing a unifying perspective on archives, libraries and museums, what

is the status of museum objects? e.g. specimens of dead birds in Berkeleys natural history museum. Same purpose as books on library shelves. They function as documents. Dead bird specimens as documents! Then Boyd Rayward showed me the antelope-as-document in Briets Quest-ce que la documentation? (1951). My idea! -- but 37 years earlier. July 11, 2017 ISKO France - Briet 2 Briets antelope changed my life Publications, using antelope not dead birds:

Information and information systems. 1991. Information as thing. JASIS 1991 What is a document? JASIS 1997 Explored European documentation before 1945. Like finding a forgotten civilization! Comments on Briet and Paul Otlet. Emanuel Goldberg, 1881-1970: search engine in late 1920s, Dresden. Lodewyk Bendikson, 1875-1953: photographic techniques in documentation, California. July 11, 2017 ISKO France - Briet 3 The sources of ideas in Otlet and Briet Otlets major works Trait de documentation (1934) and Monde

(1935) are declarative: little argument and few cited sources. The selection, arrangement and presentation of ideas may be new, but perhaps the ideas themselves are not. Bibliographer-style rhetoric! Old wines mixed in new bottles? So, to understand Otlet better, we should study him less and study his sources and context more. So maybe the same strategy with Briet . . . July 11, 2017 ISKO France - Briet 4 Suzanne Briets writings >100 books and articles: - conventional writings on bibliography, documentation, libraries - literature & history: Arthur Rimbaud and the Ardennes region. Three exceptional books:

- Entre Aisne et Marne et au del. 1976. Autobiographical notes. - Direction concorde [Toward harmony], 1979. Meditations on life, religion, society, and the future. - Quest-ce que la documentation? 1951. A manifesto on documents, documentation, and documentalists. Also personal, e.g. Sections, each dedicated to her superiors: Julien Cain, head of the Bibliothque nationale. Louis Ragey, head of CNAM, site of her documentation program. Charles Le Maistre, president of FID. Briet was vice-president. July 11, 2017 ISKO France - Briet 5 Problems with Briets sources These three personal books often give no source, e.g. Quest-ce que la documentation? First paragraph:

Un document est une preuve lappui dun fait. Source? Une bibliographe contemporaine soucieuse de clart. Direction concorde: Many quotations, only surname of source. e.g. Footnotes on p 64 are typical: (1) Imitation (2) Rimbaud (3) R. Mnard (4) Saint-Paul (5) Pags (6) Ch. de Gaulle. Entre Aisne: Cryptic use of first name or initials, e.g. note headed H. A. K. . Not explained explicitly, about German librarian Hugo Andres Krss who protected French libraries during Occupation. Methodology: Identify / imagine source author, imagine source document, find specific passage of text. Simple, but slow. July 11, 2017 ISKO France - Briet 6 Briets Meditations: Direction concorde

Catholic, but an impersonal God, more generic theist. Does not expect guidance from God or the church but does believe in meditation / introspection. Guide: social psychologist Robert Pags: Itinraire du seul; essai. 1962. Construction of meaning. Lexigence: Roman. 1964. Pierre is comfortable, but wants a purpose in life; meets a charismatic guru Melchisdec; then Pierres wife, Lucile, begins her personal search . . . July 11, 2017 ISKO France - Briet 7 Conservative, feminist, optimist Sense of community. Equity but not equality.

Abortion, contraception, homosexuality, women with short hair, and men with long hair are threats to the race. Optimism. Pierre Perrier, colleague, cataloger, BN. 1924. Artiste ou philosophe: tude sur le role oppos de l'art et de la philosophie dans la civilization. 1931. Lunit humaine: Histoire de la civilization et de lesprit humain. Denunciation of human atrocities. 1948. Lunification humaine. Revue de synthse. Crosscultural contacts beneficial, now increased by telecommunications and Unesco. So future harmony! July 11, 2017 ISKO France - Briet 8 Raymond Ruyer

Philosopher interested in the origins of life, systems theory, imaginations of German Romantic writers, etc. Combines realism (independent material world) with idealism (reality as we know it is mentally constructed). Panpsychism. To increase acceptance of his ideas, Ruyer says they are not his ideas but were developed by scientists in the USA! 1974. La Gnose de Princeton : des savants la recherche d'une religion. Best-seller! 1977. Les cent prochains sicles : le destin historique de l'homme selon la nouvelle gnose amricaine. 1978. L'Art d'tre toujours content : introduction la vie gnostique. Briet does not know of the deception. She likes these ideas. July 11, 2017 ISKO France - Briet 9

A Comment on Bibliography Not simple progress from Gesners Bibliotheca universalis (1545) onwards. 1892 Founding of the Bibliographical Society, London, for both Intellectual Bibliography and Material Bibliography. Paul Otlet Un peu de bibliographie: UDC, RBU, etc. 1907 Victor Chapot: La bibliographie est une science assez rcente. Briet inherited this renaissance. July 11, 2017 ISKO France - Briet 10 Briet on documents Une toile est-elle un document? Un galet roul par un torrent est-il un document? Un animal vivant est-il un document? Non.

Mais sont des documents les photographies et les catalogues dtoiles, les pierres dun muse de minralogie, les animaux catalogus et exposs dans un Zoo. A radical departure from the customary emphasis on texts. Lantilope catalogue est un document initial et les autres documents [about the antelope] sont des documents drivs. Distinction found in anglophone textual studies but I had not seen it in anglophone documentation / information science. What precedent(s) for these ideas? July 11, 2017 ISKO France - Briet 11 Back to Robert Pags Before becoming a social psychologist, Pags was a clandestine anarchist activist, a militant, named Rodion. Also from 1946 a student in the UFOD documentation program at

CNAM organized by Suzanne Briet and Jean Clemandire. 1947 Thesis Transformations documentaires et milieu culturel. Published 1948 in FID Revue de documentation 15 (3) : 53-64. Same ideas as Briet! Explained. Gorilla in cage as a document! Graphic documents are about something and so secondary. A specimen (non-graphic) is about itself, auto-document, primary. Pags known in KO for his indexing language: Lanalyse code (CODOC): Limited vocabulary, complex syntax, very concise notation (Chiffres 1959; Demailly 1992). July 11, 2017 ISKO France - Briet 12 Document origins Two types: Documents by creation and documents by attribution (Meyriat 1978). But two kinds of attribution: Attributed by source and attributed

by interpretant. So, total, three types (Buckland 2017): Briets examples Made as a document Made into a document Regarded as a document July 11, 2017 Photograph of star Stone presented in museum Living animal ISKO France - Briet 13 Beyond Graphic Documents Traditional: Documents are texts. Graphic: Any graphic expression (images, sculpture): Meyriat, Shera.

Semiotic / phenomenological: Anything regarded as signifying: Pags, Briet, Gardin. Primary / secondary document distinction becomes problematic when all documents graphic. Then every primary document is also a secondary document. Significant intellectual advances in SIC are rare: The move from graphic to semiotic is fundamental. Among the most important developments in SIC in our time. July 11, 2017 ISKO France - Briet 14 Detachment and Context SIC (bibliography, communication, documentation, KO, librarianship) dominated by notions of sameness and transmission. Triumph of preservation of message / meaning through space and time.

Briets examples suggest the opposite: - Photograph taken, immediately obsolete, irreversible. - Stone is removed, prepared for presentation in new context. - Antelope transported from habitat, dpayse. Detachment from context = placing in a new context. Il ny a pas de hors-texte (Jacques Derrida 1967). But meaning depends on context (L. Fleck 1935; A. Giddens 1981). A central, fundamental problem neglected. (Exception: B. Frohmann 2012). July 11, 2017 ISKO France - Briet 15 After Briet The rich world of Briet, Gardin, de Grolier, Malcls, Pags, et al., dissipated. New emphasis on writing and the political compromise of SIC (Palermiti & Polity 2002; Ibekwe-SanJuan

2012). One may regret that there was not more emphasis on Knowledge Organization! July 11, 2017 ISKO France - Briet 16

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