Wikipedia:WikiProject Mesoamerica/Guidelines

PacalII.jpg This is a subpage of WikiProject Mesoamerica. Some or all of this subpage may be transcluded on the main Project page(s). Portions of this page which are not meant to appear on the main Project page(s) should be placed between "noinclude" tags.

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Article watchlistsCategoriesRecognised contentMonitoringAssessmentsResourcesCitationsJournalsGuidelinesParticipants This subpage lists any guidelines and conventions which have been identified, proposed or maintained by the project, such as those concerned with standardizing terminology usage in articles, the consistent presentation and layout of articles, and other aspects.

The guidelines and conventions recognised by the project are briefly listed under the "Summary" section immediately below, which appears on the main project page. The recommended format is *Num. Name — brief description.

Further explanation, exclusions etc are given in the "Details" section further below (which does not appear on the Main page).

New proposals and discussions may be entered at the corresponding talk page.

SummaryEdit

Summary of guidelines/conventions for editing Project-related articles. See WP:MESO/G for full details:

  • M01. Mesoamerica— it's Mesoamerica, not "Meso-America", "MesoAmerica" or "Meso America".
  • M02. English spelling— 'American' spelling is to be preferred over 'Commonwealth' or British spelling, for most articles. In any case, spelling should be consistent within an article.

Q'eqchi7 (talk) 14:46, 10 July 2012 (UTC)*M03. "Maya vs. Mayan"— as a rule, only use the form Mayan when referring to languages; otherwise, Maya is used for everything else. In these senses, the two words are true adjectives, thus: "Maya architecture", "Mayan phonetics". The words may also be used as adjectival nouns, in which case "the Maya" can mean the people (as does "the French"), and "to study Mayan" can mean to study the Mayan language family. Both words can also be regular nouns, with regular -s plurals: "Three Mayas were taken to hospital" or "Three Mayans were hired as translators".

  • M04. Orthography of Mayan words— other than for certain widely recognised placenames and some others, it is recommended that when writing Mayan words and terminology that the orthography follow the conventions of the Academia de Lenguas Mayas de Guatemala (1988), a standard adopted by many current sources. The orthography in the former 'standard' (derived from 16thC Yukatek) should also be given where different, and in any case the orthography employed in an article should be consistent and the distinctions made clear between competing orthographies.
  • M05. Use of diacritics/accentsDiacritics (accent marks) should not be used in the names of archaeological sites, cultures, locales, etc. where the name wholly derives from an indigenous Mesoamerican language that doesn't use diacritics. Modern-day localities, municipios, or Spanish-derived names may use diacritics as appropriate.


DetailsEdit

Details of applicability / exceptions / explanations for each to go here.

M01. MesoamericaEdit

  • Guideline/convention: It's Mesoamerica,', not "Meso-America", "MesoAmerica" or "Meso America".
  • explanation/rationale: This is the form almost universally used.

M02. English spellingEdit

  • Guideline/convention: 'American' spelling is to be preferred over 'Commonwealth' or British spelling, for most articles.
  • explanation/rationale: Although the MoS allows for either American or Commonwealth spelling, the general convention observed seems to be that each are used for articles relating to their own jusrisdiction.
  • exceptions: A possible exception is for articles relating to Belize, but these probably need to be considered on a case-by-case basis.

M03. Maya vs. MayanEdit

  • Guideline/convention: as a rule, only use the form Mayan when referring to languages; otherwise, Maya is used for everything else (both singular and plural).
  • explanation/rationale: By convention in Mesoamerican/Mayanist studies, the form Maya is used as both a singular and plural noun, and as an adjective- thus, "the Maya civilization" and not "the Mayan civilization", "my life among the Maya" and not "among the Mayas". The exception to this is in the field of linguistics, where Mayan is used, thus: "Mayan languages". It is by no means a hard and fast 'rule' or always observed in the scientific literature, but it is one which is consciously recognised by many in the field, and it is proposed that for consistency's sake wikipedia articles follow the same lines.

M04. Orthography of Mayan wordsEdit

Orthographical correspondence for Yukatek
Academia
(new/revised)
Colonial-based
(old)
' ?
a a
b' b
ch ch
ch' ch'
e e
h h
i i
j h
k c
k' k
l l
m m
n n
o o
p p
p' pp
s z
t t
t' th
tz tz
tz' dz
u u
w u
x x
y y
  • Guideline/convention: other than for certain widely recognised placenames and some others, it is recommended that when writing Mayan words and terminology that the orthography follow the conventions of the Academia de Lenguas Mayas de Guatemala (1988), a standard adopted by many current sources. The orthography in the former 'standard' (derived from 16thC Yucatec) should also be given where different, and in any case the orthography employed in an article should be consistent and the distinctions made clear between competing orthographies
  • explanation/rationale: Mayan words and terms derived from Mayan words (eg placenames, deities, personal names) have been written in a number of different orthographical conventions, and the spelling variations often encountered can lead to confusion. To minimise such confusion and in the interests of consistency, first and foremost a consistent orthographical standard should be observed within the body of an article, and also preferably between related articles.
  • Until recently, perhaps the most widespread orthography was based on that ascribed to 16thC Yucatec by the Spanish, which was later extended to be used for non-Yucatec Mayan words as well. However there have also been a good number of other orthographical systems used by references and dictionaries.
  • In 1988 the Academia de Lenguas Mayas de Guatemala (ALMG) developed a proposed standardised orthography for Mayan languages (since ratified into Guatemalan law), and many scholars have subsequently adopted this orthography in their works- see for example this note from Peter Mathews. While there are still differences between researchers on how much to change certain spellings which may have been in common use for some time (see discussion on this point here, pg 5 of the handbook), its adoption is now reasonably standard in many modern publications.
  • Therefore, it is proposed that as far as is practicable, where Mayan words and terminology is used that it be firstly written according to this consistent standard.
  • However, since older works which are still referenced (and a few contemporary ones) use a different orthography, the alternative spelling(s) should also be provided for clarity. For example, Ahau or Ahaw (old orthography) would now be written in the new/revised orthography Ajaw.
  • The table to the right shows an example correspondence between the revised Acadamia orthography and that of 16thC colonial Yucatec (after Karttunen and Helmke, also Mathews).
  • Resources: For Guatemalan Mayan languages, the ALMG has published charts of the standardised alphabets defined for each (there are some differences between individual languages). This chart can be accessed here: "Diagramación de los alfabetos para la aplicación del método" (PDF). (1.8 MB)
  • Exceptions: Some placenames and other terms which are widely recognised in the 'old' orthography might first be represented in the familiar form, but the revised orthography also noted. These to be worked out case-by-case.

M05. Use of diacritics/accentsEdit

  • Diacritics (accent marks) should not be used in the names of archaeological sites, cultures, locales, etc. where the name wholly derives from an indigenous Mesoamerican language that does not use diacritics. The names of modern-day localities, municipios, or Spanish-derived names may use diacritics as appropriate.

New proposals and discussionsEdit

Discussion of current and new proposals may take place on the corresponding talk page.