Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Biography/Core biographies/Cultural depictions of core biography figures

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Welcome to my worksheet talk page. Right now this idea is in its infancy and there doesn't seem to be any standard place to discuss this in Wikipedia namespace, so I'm inviting interested editors to discuss matters here. We can move this to another namespace if interest reaches critical mass. Durova 19:29, 18 October 2006 (UTC)

Formatting for cultural pages[edit]

Cultural depictions of Joan of Arc is table formatted in keeping with standard practice for many featured lists. This makes things easier on the reader and a bit harder on the editor. So far visitors have succeeded in adding information with relatively few problems. It might be a good idea to insert a hidden code note at the top of the page to suggest that non-tech editors leave additions on the talk page. Durova 17:23, 18 October 2006 (UTC)

Do you mean the yellow notice at the top of the page? If so, looks good to me. Durova 14:38, 19 October 2006 (UTC)
Yes, something like that. Regards, David (talk) 03:00, 20 October 2006 (UTC)
It looks good to me too. It could be copied whole, perhaps (or someone could turn it into a template?) Andrew Dalby 09:23, 20 October 2006 (UTC)
Re making it a template, do you think the wording is too specific...?  Maybe it could be a template with one or two parameters... Regards, David (talk) 02:16, 21 October 2006 (UTC)


While I agree that dates are very important, some date information at the Joan of Arc cultural list has simply been unavailable online - particularly for outdoor sculpture. I add this information whenever I can find it. Durova 17:23, 18 October 2006 (UTC)

In that case the date-range for the author is used ie. (1900-1985) -- Stbalbach 21:02, 25 October 2006 (UTC)


Over at Talk:Homer I opined that the "Cultural depictions of X" format was "clunky". What I mean by this is that the title sounds odd to me, and doesn't communicate effectively: my first question is "what's a cultural depiction?" Looking up "cultural depiction" on google suggests that the phrase usually means pop cultural representations or concepts; in fact, "popular" is often combined with "cultural depiction". Yet with many of these figures, we want to inlcude not only the pop culture stuff (TV shows, movies, rock songs), but also paintings, sculpture, literary fiction, poetry, etc.

I would prefer a titling format like Homer in art, literature and popular culture or Homer in the arts and popular culture--these titles make it clear what type of material a reader can expect to see in these lists, and communicates that these articles are for all types of representations, not just the list of pop culture/trivia one finds at the bottom of many articles. This convention could also be applied to the many "X in fiction" articles--I recently moved Atlantis in fiction to Atlantis in art, literature and popular culture, for example. --Akhilleus (talk) 19:39, 18 October 2006 (UTC)

I'd like to see what other Wikipedians think about this. When we renamed Joan of Arc in art to Cultural depictions of Joan of Arc there was a pretty small group to brainstorm on a title. I've posted to Wikipedia:WikiProject biography and will open an RfC. Durova 20:38, 18 October 2006 (UTC)
The idea of having separate pages with this theme is a very useful one. As regards titling, I agree with Akhilleus's point. Although "Cultural depictions of ..." is accurate, it sounds very academic. "... in the arts and popular culture" is more real and immediate; and the title would then begin with the name of the subject, which is a good thing, I think. Andrew Dalby 21:07, 18 October 2006 (UTC)
If I remember correctly, the reason we didn't go with that for the Joan of Arc list was the ghost of my eleventh grade English teacher scolding about parallel construction. Does anyone have a pedant-proof version for YeOldeFamousDeadGuy in (adjective) arts and popular culture? Durova 00:59, 19 October 2006 (UTC)
My 2¢/€/etc:
  1. "Cultural" is inclusive to me, i.e. embraces "art" and "pop" culture;
  2. Yes, Cultural depictions of X is more academic, but is also (1) shorter and (2) given 1. above, seems more inclusive than "X in A, B, C,..." (i.e. when an example of "in D" is added, the page's title will need to include D; then, when an example of "in E" is added, ...)
  3. On the other hand, perhaps X in art and popular culture melds the less academic but still inclusive...?
Regards, David Kernow (talk) 06:07, 19 October 2006 (UTC) (via WP:RFC/STYLE)
In the broadest sense this might expand into other areas: a good number of core biography figures have had other things dedicated to them. For instance see Shakespeare garden and the large number of articles that have Shakespeare festival in the title. Others have universities, cities, asteroids, chemical elements, or houses of worship named after them. It's hard to anticipate all the ways that these very influential people get commemorated. Durova 22:18, 19 October 2006 (UTC)
One of the reasons I favor the "in art, literature, and popular culture" format is that I think it's pretty inclusive. "Art" covers just about any cultural production--sculpture, painting, architecture, a pile of tin cans in a gallery, a performance by a mime, a television show, a play, a short story, a musical performance, etc. "Literature" is just about anything that's written down. "Popular culture" is another huge category, covering all kinds of artistic production, but also general zeitgeist-y stuff like catchphrases, advertising, ringtones, etc. All three categories overlap significantly; for instance, Watchmen qualifies as all three (in my opinion), and is mentioned in Cultural depictions of Alexander the Great. If that article were instead Alexander the Great in art, literature, and popular culture I don't think we'd need to add "and in graphic novels".
As regards the parallel construction issue, "in art, literature, and popular culture" is a nice ascending tricolon. Do high school English teachers like those? --Akhilleus (talk) 22:22, 19 October 2006 (UTC)
I could go with whatever title achieves consensus. As an interim measure I'll use my current proposed naming for pages where the active editors agree on a change. Renaming would be easy if a different consensus develops, so please extend good faith toward the edits I perform while discussion is underway. Durova 22:36, 19 October 2006 (UTC)

I would prefer " the arts and popular culture" versus "cultural depictions" - the later is unusual, and not really accurate. Many things derive from other works, that are not depictions. "Depiction" is a word used for the visual arts.

The word "derivative" is what is used by many academics when making lists like this. "Derive" is a more accurate description - something is not "in" something else (that could be a copyright violation). But something does "derive" from something else. It also switches the focus of the article to the derived work, not the original work (which already has its own article). -- Stbalbach 21:12, 25 October 2006 (UTC)

Invitations to comment[edit]

I've posted to Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Biography, WP:RFC, and Wikipedia talk:Manual of Style. If this generates a critical mass of interest I'll move it into Wikipedia namespace as a proposal. Durova 20:53, 18 October 2006 (UTC)

WPBIO would be a suitable home for this. I'll move it. --kingboyk 16:08, 20 October 2006 (UTC)

Shakespeare and Tolkien comments[edit]

Just adding some comments here from somewhere else. I think more on cultural depictions of Shakespeare would be good. Only one article listed, and that is Shakespeare on screen, which is rather limited. Also, don't forget that many of these areas have groups of articles that could either be merged, or given an overview in Summary style. An example is the articles grouped together at Template:After Tolkien navbox, and indeed in general the "After..." format might be worth considering. Carcharoth 00:46, 30 October 2006 (UTC)