Through the Miranda project, we adapted the Folger's current taxonomies to best describe our collections for our users. We came up with unified taxonomies which we employed in Miranda. We continue to refine and adjust them as the project moves forward. We will make every effort to keep this page up to date, but there may be slight differences between this list and what is available on the Miranda platform. The latest updates and rationale have been included in italics.
Below, we have included definitions for our genre and format taxonomy terms.
Categories in this taxonomy describe the intellectual content of items, as opposed to their format or structure. We are working through places where there are gaps or overlaps in categories with the Format taxonomy.
- Art: Visual (artistic) materials, including architectural drawings, historical art, landscapes, art related to performances or other events, portraits, and prints and printmaking materials
- Commentary: Treatises or series of comments that explain or annotate another work.
- Communications: Items intended to convey awareness, knowledge, or information to others. Including but not limited to: cards, telegrams, letters.
- Derivative works: Works that are based on one or more pre-existing works, such as a translation, musical arrangement, dramatization, fictionalization, motion picture version, sound recording, art reproduction, abridgment, condensation, or any other form in which a work may be recast, transformed, or adapted.
- Humor: Comical works intended to provoke laughter and provide amusement
- Literary: Previously "literary and performing art." Works of drama, dance, music, prose, poetry, cinema, television, etc. This term was shortened for simplicity while remaining descriptive of the content included in this category.
- Music: This is a new term in the taxonomy. An artistic composition that combines vocal and/or instrumental sounds to produce an audio piece, which may or may not have been intended for performance.
- News: Letters, reports, serials, newsbooks, corantos, or other written communications that communicate news. May be published at stated, frequent, or regular intervals and contain news, articles, editorials, features, advertisements, and/or other items of current interest. This category also includes news clippings: illustrations, pages, articles, or columns of text removed from books, newspapers, journals, or other printed sources and kept for their informational content.
- Official Documents: Records, in law, having the legally recognized and judicially enforceable quality of establishing some fact (from AAT, "official documents"). May be related to financial, legal, government or personal official documents. May include deeds, licenses, legal notices, or official documents of a personal nature
- Performance materials: Documents or materials used in or related to a performance. May be used by performers, or ephemera that results from a performance, intended for audiences. Examples include playbills, prompt books.
- Promotional materials: Printed matter or objects devised to advertise or promote products, causes, or other concerns, especially those items given away to prospective consumers, clients, or contributors.
- Recreational material: Previously known as "Realia." Physical objects (not books or audio-visual materials) that were produced for use, decoration, or entertainment. This term was changed in order to be more descriptive of the contents and purpose of the items that fit into this category.
- Reference: Works intended primarily for consultation rather than for continuous reading.
- Religious works: This category is new. Works related to religion, sacred or religious beliefs and practices, including religious texts, sermons, and devotional literature.
These categories describe the original format of an item, not the format of its digital representation. They describe the structure or format of an item, not its intellectual content. We are working through gaps and overlaps in these two taxonomies.
- Text: a manuscript or printed document, including books and letters. WE are currently using the two terms on the second level of the hierarchy: "Manuscript text" and "Printed text."
- Printed text: a document of any kind created through the process of printing, including books or music scores.
- Manuscript text: a document of any kind, written entirely by hand. May include books, letters, or official documents.
- Audio: Previously labeled "sound." Refers to sound recordings, stored electronically, in any media. May include items such as podcasts or audiobook recordings, or recordings of lectures or performances
- Image: Refers to images, in any medium but usually referring to paintings, drawings, prints, photography, or digital works
- Notated Music: A new addition to this taxonomy, indicates visual representation of musical works where components of musical sound are expressed using a system of symbols and/or words. These can be in manuscript, print, or electronic form.
- Object: Previously labeled "3D Object." Refers to items that have, or appear to have, the three dimensions of length, width, and height. May include ceramics, human hair, statues, a bust of Shakespeare carved in salt
- Data[set]: a set of data or information that can be interpreted and reinterpreted in quantitative analysis of a subject
- Interactive resource, also known as "online resource": These are online tools that are characterized by an interaction between the user (interactor) and the tool (resource), in which the interactor performs actions that the computer code of the resource responds to appropriately. Items in this category may include a map with information on specific cities that pops up when clicked, or a chart whose data can be manipulated through menu selections.
- Video: Refers to manifestations of motion pictures, stored electronically, in any media