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Featured articleJames Joyce is a featured article; it (or a previous version of it) has been identified as one of the best articles produced by the Wikipedia community. Even so, if you can update or improve it, please do so.
Main Page trophyThis article appeared on Wikipedia's Main Page as Today's featured article on October 8, 2004.
On this day... Article milestones
September 13, 2004Featured article candidatePromoted
December 8, 2006Featured article reviewKept
November 20, 2021Featured article reviewKept
On this day... Facts from this article were featured on Wikipedia's Main Page in the "On this day..." column on June 16, 2008, June 16, 2010, June 16, 2012, June 16, 2015, June 16, 2018, June 16, 2019, June 16, 2020, June 16, 2022, and June 16, 2024.
Current status: Featured article

RFC: Should the article have an infobox?[edit]

The following discussion is an archived record of a request for comment. Please do not modify it. No further edits should be made to this discussion. A summary of the conclusions reached follows.
The main arguments presented in this discussion against an infobox are:
  • they can bloat an article, distracting a reader from the lead;
  • infoboxes often repeat the information included in the lead;
  • and on mobile devices, infoboxes clutter up an article, and compete for screen space with a lead.

On the other hand, the arguments in favor of the infobox are:

  • they provide key information at a glance, so the reader does not have to read through the article to find the information;
  • and readers often expect to see an infobox on articles, as they have become much more frequent since the last poll on this issue in 2010.
While at the start of the RfC, it trended toward a no consensus result, the compromise suggested by Wtfiv (a smaller infobox with fewer parameters) gained significant support. There is a consensus to include a short infobox. The infobox should only include the information most relevant to the article: birth, death, occupation, notable works, spouse, children, and signature. However, it should not include prizes, awards, or other parameters that unnecessarily increase the infobox's size. (non-admin closure) — Ingenuity (talk • contribs) 15:07, 25 January 2023 (UTC)[reply]

reviewing archives and past discussion reveals consensus to be invalid (WP:STRAWPOLL) or nonexistent. Biographies overwhelmingly have infoboxes; pointing out the few remaining oddballs like Ezra Pound is WP:OTHERSTUFF. The last major discussion is also over half a decade ago. Dronebogus (talk) 15:25, 3 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]


  • Strong Support Infoboxes have become a normal and valuable part of the user experience when navigating an article on Wikipedia. The data backs up this conclusion.[1] Making information easy to find and consume is one this project's highest priorities. While there's always going to be a reluctance to adopt something new, infoboxes have become so common there would need to be an extraordinary reason to justify not including one in an article with significant content. There is certainly some room for discussion around what can or cannot be included in the IB, but it's time to accept that infoboxes are a valuable tool for the end user. This topic has recently come up at Talk:Laurence_Olivier, Talk:Pyotr_Ilyich_Tchaikovsky, and Talk:Maddie_Ziegler and an infobox would be valuable addition to each article. Thanks! Nemov (talk) 17:23, 3 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
  • Oppose, for the reasons stated repeatedly discussions over the years, including the one at the top of this page which concluded less than half a year (not decade) ago. There are many reasons; these are some of mine:
    • This is an article, not a collection of data points;
    • relatedly, gargantuan infobox formats invite filling them with unimportant and trivial data;
    • they tend to overwhelm the front of the article, which should draw the reader in with a well-written introduction;
    • we are dealing with an artist and his art, which by nature are matters of judgment which cannot be stated or summarized in a table;
    • if specific data points are wanted, search engines can help find the desired information.

One other comment: the proposer should carefully consider the requirement that the proposal adhere to the requirement that the question be presented with a "brief, neutral statement of or question about the issue" and avoid freighted terms like "obviously fake". Let's stick to the facts. Kablammo (talk) 18:29, 3 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]

  • Neutral When I was editing this article during the Featured Article Review (FAR) process, the consensus of the long-time editors was against the infobox. My goal was to clean up the article and support the work of previous editors, so I honored their preference. The the last poll on the infobox was overwhelmingly against the infobox. Given that it was 12 years ago, having a new poll seems to be sensible. I'm good with either outcome. My major concern is that it reflects the current consensus of editors committed to maintaining this page. I'll ping some of the editors whose work during the FAR was invaluable: @Victoriaearle, Ceoil, SandyGeorgia, and Buidhe:. (Kablammo, who was one of those invaluable editors, has already weighed in.) Wtfiv (talk) 18:49, 3 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
    Overwhelming consensus of “editors committed to maintaining the page” can mean overwhelming de facto WP:OWNership. I would like fresher voices with new arguments. Dronebogus (talk) 22:11, 3 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
    Dronebogus I am responding to the ping from Wtfiv. Please rephrase your RFC in neutral terms and without the unnecessary hyperbole. Your post of 22:11 is also unnecessarily charged; please have a look at WP:FAOWN and avoid unnecessarily fanning flames of past infobox wars. SandyGeorgia (Talk) 14:20, 4 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
    I see nothing about regular page editors having unilateral control over infoboxes on that page. Dronebogus (talk) 14:23, 4 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
    The page says that "Explaining civilly why sources and policies support a particular version of a featured article does not necessarily constitute ownership". Charges of ownership are not conducive to a collaborative discussion, and I hope the rest of this discussion will not go the way of the non-neutral framing of an RFC and unhelpful allegations. There is some good information at WP:ARBINFOBOX that might help steer your approach to this discussion. SandyGeorgia (Talk) 14:32, 4 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
    I’m sorry for repeatedly making ownership accusations, I’ll stop doing it in this discussion. Dronebogus (talk) 19:19, 4 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
    I’ve also replaced “obviously fake” with “invalid”, since the use of a straw poll to determine consensus is still not good even if in good faith. Dronebogus (talk) 19:21, 4 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Kablanmo, the consensus in question is obviously fake because it’s an admitted straw poll made up of simple yes/no votes with minimal elaboration. This is the opposite of real consensus. Dronebogus (talk) 22:13, 3 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
  • Comment I notified the above projects in case there's anyone wasn't here 12 years ago who has an opinion; I realize infoboxes are surprisingly controversial. However, there's a caveat that most WikiProjects are inactive, but at least I tried. I dream of horses (Contribs) (Talk) 20:45, 3 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
James Joyce
Photograph of Joyce in profile
Joyce in Zurich, c. 1918
Born(1882-02-02)February 2, 1882
Rathgar, Dublin, Ireland
DiedJanuary 13, 1941(1941-01-13) (aged 58)
Zurich, Switzerland
OccupationNovelist, poet
Notable worksUlysses (1922), Dubliners (1914), A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man (1916), Finnegans Wake (1939)
  • Comment/query - Dronebogus as initiator of the discussion & RFC, have you given thought to presenting a mock up of an infobox so we can consider the various options? The issues with modernists (writers, painters, artists in general) is that a number of them spent long stretches of their lives as expatriates, moving away from home countries, not getting married, having mistresses, creating new movements in lit./painting etc., whilst often earning money/being employed outside of their art - i.e. Joyce. The other issue is how to describe the art, whether to fill the "best known" field - it's often subjective and so on. Finally, consideration has to be given to the editors who maintain the article year-after-year, because infoboxes are magnets for vandalism at worst and for bloat at best. Generally I'm opposed for this particular article and may not change my mind, but would like to see a sample before !voting. Victoria (tk) 21:44, 3 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
    There’s a good mockup at Talk:James Joyce/Archive 2#Infobox 3 Dronebogus (talk) 22:10, 3 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
    Not seeing one there or in any of the archives. Since you've pointed out that some time has gone by, in my view providing a mock up would be helpful.
    In terms of this discussion, we need to remember that this is a featured article, it's a content decision, thus WP:FAOWN applies. Furthermore, in terms of this discussion we need to be mindful of the proposed principles of Wikipedia:Arbitration/Requests/Case/Infoboxes/Proposed decision which still stand. Thanks, Victoria (tk) 22:31, 3 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
    The link was wrong, it should be fixed now. Dronebogus (talk) 22:40, 3 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
    Have ressurected there now, minus full name James Augustine Aloysius Joyce (already in bold), Language: English (obvs), Alma mater: University College Dublin (who cares), & some overlinking. Ceoil (talk) 05:35, 4 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
    Thanks, couldn't find one in archives. I'd suggest removing "poet", though Kablammo & Wtiv would know what the sources say re poet. Victoria (tk) 19:58, 4 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
    Shouldn’t marriage and children be added? Dronebogus (talk) 13:55, 4 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
  • No to marriage & children. Beyond the obvious reasons, the first didn't precede the second as the article explains. Victoria (tk) 19:58, 4 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
    Obvious to who? Dronebogus (talk) 20:28, 4 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
  • Strong support - I’ve heard it all before, and am thoroughly unconvinced by arguments against infoboxes. They’ve become an iconic and expected part of Wikipedia, and I personally believe them to be valuable. This page should have one. Xx78900 (talk) 23:46, 3 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
  • Oppose for this article, although am not opposed to infoboxes in general. Like Victoria, my worry is bloat and error, both of which can be especially harmful and misleading on early modernists bio articles, whose work is prone to misunderstanding (as mentioned above). I do understand the frustration on both sides, and to vocalise some of the fear on the opposing side - despite Nemov claiming "There is certainly some room for discussion around what can or cannot be included in the IB", that is not the form of pro-box editors, given the opening on a section on the Olivier talk days after the RFC ended re his marriages. Anyhow thats my 10c if its worth anything :( Ceoil (talk) 04:14, 4 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
    that is not the form of pro-box editors, given the opening on a section on the Olivier talk days after the RFC ended re his marriages.
    Since you have named me specifically, what's this issue you're raising? The infobox was added and now there's a discussion about a section of the infobox in accordance with Wikipedia guidelines. How is that at odds with what I said? Nemov (talk) 05:36, 4 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
    Because despite your shucks claim above, scope creep is a fact of the way wiki works and you know it. This is why i'm now putting a proposal, if we DO DECIDE to include a box, its limited to certain paramaters and claims, unless agreed to on talk. Ceoil (talk) 05:39, 4 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
    I'm still confused. The marriages was part of the infobox example during the RfC and an IP editor removed it immediately after it was closed. That's far from an example of scope creep. Nemov (talk) 05:46, 4 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
    There would be more willingness to discuss here if there was comfort against bloat. Is what I'm saying. So many fields have been added to the template over the years that the mind boggles. My vote is to limit to occupation & notableworks, and exclude things like full name, Language, Alma mater, marriages, offspring etc, ie keep as tight as possible, and protect against well-meaning but drive by trivial additions. Also...I only now a days keep a half eye on the Olivier page, as its full of needless strife and at my age could do without out the stress of getting sucked into endless circular argument. Prob you feel the same way.[2] so if a box, its a very shrot one. Ceoil (talk) 05:54, 4 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
    Your argument is basically to ensure the infobox is as useless as possible to make it look bad. Dronebogus (talk) 23:38, 4 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
  • Oppose per the opposers. I think the main/regular editors of the page should decide, not drive-bys (like me). Johnbod (talk) 05:10, 4 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
    Once again, WP:OWN is relevant here. Infoboxes are for reader benefit, and should not be decided by the whims of 5 or 6 editors who obviously are biased against infoboxes. If it was their choice and theirs alone this discussion would be instantly closed as “no”. Dronebogus (talk) 13:59, 4 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
    Thats a real cheap shot, not just for the hypocrisy of you being fresh off the Laurence Oliver page, but also because you are saying on the one hand "I get the incumbents points re bloat, wont happen here" and on the other hand "fuck the incumbents". As far as I can see the opposers are advocating compromise, and you are taking pot shots. Ceoil (talk) 17:58, 4 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
    Who are you talking to? It’s not very civil whoever it’s directed at. Dronebogus (talk) 19:17, 4 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
    Is describing your approach across series of article-talks uncivil? If so, that seems more your problem rather than mine, because what I'm seeing here is (a) infobox warrior (b) dishonest. Ceoil (talk) 20:23, 4 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
    I take it you are talking to me? Dronebogus (talk) 20:26, 4 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
    Address the substance please. Ceoil (talk) 20:30, 4 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
    Oh I’m the one with the ad hominem attacks, considering you just called me a liar and an infobox warrior? Dronebogus (talk) 20:33, 4 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
    Address the substance please. Ceoil (talk) 20:39, 4 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
    Address the attacks please. Stop repeating meaningless statements please. Dronebogus (talk) 20:40, 4 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
    It's WP:FAOWN that applies here. Perhaps you haven't noticed that before - no sign of "particular care" being taken. Johnbod (talk) 18:24, 4 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
    Editors are asked to take particular care when editing a Featured article; it is considerate to discuss significant changes of text or images on the talk page first. Explaining civilly why sources and policies support a particular version of a featured article does not necessarily constitute ownership.
    I do not believe infoboxes fall under this jurisdiction since they don't change text or images. It's a navigation tool for end users and it summarizes content that's already been discussed. Nemov (talk) 19:59, 4 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
    It is not a navigation tool. It never has been, isn’t and likely never will be. You are mischaracterising it by describing it this way. As it’s name makes clear: it is an information box. It is information in a text form, often with an accompanying image. 2A00:23C7:2B86:9801:7D16:A849:4BD3:B993 (talk) 23:20, 4 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
  • Oppose. I've written articles and taken them to FA with IBs and without, and only used them where they are of use to the reader, and not just because some editors think that they are common on some articles, so they should be on all biographies. The proposed box repeats the facts of the first paragraph and is utterly underwhelming. Are readers really going to read Dubliners and then come to WP to look at the IB to see where he died? (And just to correct a misnomer about IBs: they are not "navigation tools" - that's wrong). 2A00:23C7:2B86:9801:7183:2FED:A175:2EA1 (talk) 20:25, 4 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
    Well I use infoboxes to find out how old people were when they died, or how old they are now. I don’t want to have to get out a calculator. Dronebogus (talk) 20:27, 4 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
To use your single argumentative tactic back at you, oh shucks, who are you directing that weak rhetorical strawman at? Me? Santa? I'm confused. Ceoil (talk) 20:37, 4 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
What are you even talking about? Dronebogus (talk) 20:39, 4 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
This - before you started that bizzar "where am I what's happening" series of posts - : Like Victoria, my worry is bloat and error, both of which can be especially harmful and misleading on early modernists bio articles, whose work is prone to misunderstanding (as mentioned above). I do understand the frustration on both sides, and to vocalise some of the fear on the opposing side - despite Nemov claiming "There is certainly some room for discussion around what can or cannot be included in the IB", that is not the form of pro-box editors, given the opening on a section on the Olivier talk days after the RFC ended re his marriages.

To note again, I'm agruging for a shortened box. Please read what you are replying to. PLEASE STAY ON POINT. Ceoil (talk) 20:56, 4 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Para 3 of the lead. 2A00:23C7:2B86:9801:7183:2FED:A175:2EA1 (talk) 20:31, 4 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
I expect to be able to look over at the right corner and see it, it’s frustrating when I can’t. Dronebogus (talk) 20:36, 4 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
It took me about five seconds to see it in the lead. I' find it frustrating when the eye is drawn to a box of tangential factoids that don't aid understanding of a subject, but you can't please all the people all the time. - 2A00:23C7:2B86:9801:7183:2FED:A175:2EA1 (talk) 20:42, 4 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
I’m sorry I’m genuinely lost between all the replies and indents Dronebogus (talk) 21:02, 4 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Again, you have mischaracterized what happened on that RfC. I shouldn't have to point out again that it's not an example of scope creep. It was in the RfC example before close and an opposing editor removed it immediately. Please review that timeline in GF. Thanks! Nemov (talk) 22:15, 4 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
  • Strong support - the infobox as presented would be an improvement to the article. As a reader, I wished I had an infobox presenting me the data in a more easy to digest summary. This is exactly what infoboxes excel at. WP:OWN and WP:FAOWN absolutely apply here, and a more effective consensus would include input from some editors who present the perspective of naive readers. Not people who already know the information presented in the lead. — Shibbolethink ( ) 14:09, 5 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
  • Oppose box and oppose discussion at this time. I've thought long and hard about this and even lost sleep; have looked elsewhere on the web to see how other sites deal w/ the "synopis" issue (Britannica's is quite good). Finally in the end decided against posting the lengthy comment I'd composed to do w/ various fields, because in my view it's a moot issue.
    This Rfc was launched with the words "For me the lack of an infobox is tedious, bordering on pretentious (is the article somehow too “good” for an infobox, which I’m aware is inexplicably considered childish by some people?)"
    In my view this particular discussion is wiki-political at a time when multiple concurrent discussions are being held; the issue has been raised w/ very charged language as part of the arb elections; it's been discussed on at least one external site (that I'm aware of); and may involves backchanneling: None of these things are conducive to a collegial and collaborative compromise.
    Once fire is put to the flame and then added again & again and synonyms for conflict used, human nature being what it is & the internet being what it is, inevitably people will go to their corners, get their backs up - use whichever metaphor works - and be ill-inclined to find a workable solution.
    After a sleepless night last night (time thinking about Wikipedia and infoboxes that I'll never get back), the final straw was to see it raised again in front of the arbs today. Therefore at this time I'm opposing the box and the discussion another time when life is less busy and the topic less charged. Victoria (tk) 19:16, 6 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
    Could someone please provide a link to this arb discussion? SandyGeorgia (Talk) 19:50, 6 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
    SandyGeorgia see for example here. Also the issue of arb candidate questions is brought up in the Olivier discussion so it's obviously on people's radar. Victoria (tk) 20:16, 6 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
    Thx, Victoria; I can see more clearly now. SandyGeorgia (Talk) 00:57, 7 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
    I must admit I'm confused about what's going on in arb channels? As someone who has been involved the past 6 weeks I find some of the drama around this topic puzzling. I understand that it's human nature for there to be resistance to things that are new so I'm not surprised there was some fierce opinions about this 10+ years ago, but I don't think newer editors who have been around 5 years or so are gonna understand all this stuff going on in the background. Consensus can change and I believe that's what's happening here with Infoboxes. I don't think there's a reason to punt the discussion even if one is opposed to IBs. Nemov (talk) 20:04, 6 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
  • Weak oppose (invited by the bot) On infoboxes, I advocate including only clear-cut key info. It looks like in this article it was prone to putting in stuff that wasn't that. Also, on articles like this they are more prone to that issue and have less info-box type material. North8000 (talk) 21:26, 8 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
  • Support: Including the infobox shown here, with only birth, death, and a short list of works seems like an improvement to the article. TulsaPoliticsFan (talk) 00:53, 12 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
  • Strong support, makes life easier for those of us who sometimes just want to glance at articles.--Ortizesp (talk) 04:02, 12 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
  • Strong support How is he any different from Faulkner or Hemingway. What intrinsic quality demands that Joyce not have an IB? An IB is only a plus - there is no possible way it could harm the reader's experience. ~ HAL333 23:10, 13 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
  • Support - per inevitable. Sooner or later, all bios will have infoboxes. So why bother fighting it. GoodDay (talk) 15:40, 16 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
    Thats a bit mindless and fatalistic for my taste, but whatever. Ceoil (talk) 17:22, 27 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
  • Support Many people only spend seconds on Wikipedia. An infobox highlights the most relevant things from the lead, the same way the lead repeats the most relevant elements of the body; "redundancy" isn't a convincing oppose argument. It likely helps comprehension and information retention, and if you did eye tracking studies, I wouldn't be surprised if a plurality of people looked at the infobox first. DFlhb (talk) 16:03, 17 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
  • Support. (Summoned by bot) The infobox, especially (but not necessarily) as proposed, provides helpful basic biographical facts and context that can be reasonably expected to be of benefit to the average reader. Vague assertions about a supposedly high potential for misinformation inherent in an infobox for biographies of persons of this particular profession and era are not supported by any specific established examples or even concerns. Further, even if such issues were to manifest into something more concrete, the verifiability of those specific elements could be addressed as they arose: keeping out erroneous or poorly sourced content certainly does not stand on whether or not it is located in an infobox. SnowRise let's rap 03:41, 19 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
  • Support Responding purely as a reader because the bot asked; i have no skin in the game here, i'm pretty sure i've never edited or gnomed either Joyce or any related article. As a reader, i (and, it would appear, may others) find infoboxes useful, and a good tool. I have no other reason, but i think that serving the reader is all the reason needed. Happy days ~ LindsayHello 06:04, 19 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
  • Support the compromise outlined by Wtfiv below. --Gerda Arendt (talk) 07:18, 19 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
  • Support Infoboxes are of great benefit to readers (myself included). Good way to present simple, non-contentious facts e.g. date of birth/death, notable works etc. Yours, ToeSchmoker (talk) 12:30, 19 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
  • Support I can't believe we are still having these ridiculous infobox discussions. Time to compromise. The presence of a discreet and accurate infobox is very useful to the casual reader and is a basic element that needs to be included as a general principle. Montanabw(talk) 17:24, 19 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
  • Comment and unwatch, finding myself mostly aligned with Victoriaearle's position. I have now read the prequel, caught up on the background links provided by Victoria,[3] [4] and refreshed my memory of the past arb findings on infoboxes at Wikipedia:Arbitration/Requests/Case/Infoboxes and Wikipedia:Arbitration/Requests/Case/Civility in infobox discussions#Infobox probation (II). I fall in line with Victoria's concerns about the manner in which this RFC was approached. Among (many) other issues, it started with a non-neutral framing of this RFC, uncollegial behaviors (which persist), and continued to survey responses that do not entertain specific benefits/needs to this article of an infobox per the arbcom remedy. Arguments presented have amounted to WP:OTHERSTUFFEXISTS or WP:ILIKEIT, discussions of other articles, alleged data that does not and cannot back the statement made about what readers allegedly want, expressions of personal preference, and a glaring lack of discussion of sources, concerns, nuance, or any reason that this particular article would benefit from an infobox. This is quite a discouraging thing to see on a Featured article, not the kind of discussion that has been seen before here, and not something I want to be part of. If the best reason one has for wanting an infobox is so they can avoid doing the math for the age at which a person died, that doesn't speak very highly for the utility of an infobox here. The discussion so far has been high on hyperbole, accusation and misstatement, and low on the kind of reasoned logic one hopes for at the level of featured content.
    Wtfiv, while I appreciate your good-faith effort to move things forward by closing the RFC yourself, I hope you understand in such an environment why it is better to wait for an uninvolved closer-- particularly in an area that has seen disruptive editing and two arbcases, extending over more than a decade.
    As the still-active longest editor of this article, I am now unwatching. One of the great joys of working at the FA level is the high level of dialogue with readers thoroughly familiar with a topic and its sources; the uncollegial battleground approach and discussion here is not how I choose to spend my editing time as a hobby. I appreciate that the other regular long-time editors here may be approaching a compromise consensus, and commend them for that collaborative effort. I request that I not be pinged back to this article again; should there be an arb enforcement case, I would appreciate a ping. Best regards, SandyGeorgia (Talk) 01:21, 20 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
  • Oppose. So tiresome to repeat the same for years: infoboxes bring nothing but needless clutter and edit warring. Not an improvement at all. Ghirla-трёп- 17:49, 22 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
  • Support. So tiresome to repeat the same for years: infoboxes bring helpful order and get rid of needless clutter and edit warring. An improvement for all. --Malerooster (talk) 18:30, 23 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
  • No – the main source of Wikipedia's readers is from mobile devices. In the mobile version, infoboxes and lead paragraphs compete directly with each other for vertical screen space. This means that avoiding WP:CLUTTER and redundancy is important for all the content that appears at the beginning of the article. The individuals who write and maintain the article are the one's best qualified to determine how best to summarize the article in this limited mobile screen space. In this case, the best approach is to use only an image rather than the larger footprint of an infobox in the lead. --Guest2625 (talk) 03:43, 27 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
    Hi Guest2625. For the record, the main writer here is Wtfiv, who has proposed a compromise: a short box with strictly limited parameters. I do have concerns re how it will be policed and know from experience how pro-box people tap tap tap at the edges, but its a compromised that seems to be working for now, and as a comiitment, should not be taken lightly. Otherwise, May God have Mercy on All our Souls. Ceoil (talk) 17:22, 27 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
  • Oppose per User:SandyGeorgia and Guest2625.--Smerus (talk) 10:21, 31 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
  • Oppose per every single time this has come up. I worked hard on this article over many years and LET IT BE...Modernist (talk) 20:55, 31 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
    I’m really sorry but that is purely wp:OWNership and voting for the sake of voting. Dronebogus (talk) 20:57, 31 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
  • Oppose(Summoned by bot) per Johnbod I think the main/regular editors of the page should decide, not drive-bys (like me). Clearly the local consensus is against and on matters of this kind that local consensus should trump people like me IMO.Pincrete (talk) 13:48, 1 January 2023 (UTC)[reply]
    Own, own, own… Dronebogus (talk) 13:49, 1 January 2023 (UTC)[reply]
    Please stop badgering Dronebogus, its tiresome and creating a hostile atmosphere. You are becoming detrimental to the discussion and so belligerent and obnoxious that people are naturally going to turn against you. Anymore of this belittling of participants and will be reporting you to an/i. Ceoil (talk) 06:28, 2 January 2023 (UTC)[reply]
  • Support I spent 15+ years as a reader before becoming an editor and I really like having the infobox summarise information. More than that, it saves time searching through the article. Finally, Wikipedia has spent the last few years training people to expect information to be summarised in infoboxes. I think that the short version proposed above is a good idea as it would alleviate at least some of the concerns about length. Gusfriend (talk)
  • Support. Infoboxes are a standardised part of article space, providing key information at a glance, including birth year, death year and age at death among other things; when I'm not writing articles, I often read them and looking up someone's age is often something I do. Not having that infobox in this article thus impairs reader experience.  — Amakuru (talk) 20:59, 5 January 2023 (UTC)[reply]
  • Strong Support: Much in the same vein of Xx78900, I am unconvinced by the opposition arguments to infoboxes in general. They're an incredibly useful way to present some basic, structured points about a person. The example provided above in this discussion is a good example of how this looks. More importantly, nothing is taken away from the article as a result of an infobox - Instead, value is added! I'm also not convinced by the mobile site issue - This isn't an issue I've ever encountered on any other article with an infobox on my phone, so I won't say it isn't an issue at all, but there's no information in the first paragraph of the lead now that couldn't be (very easily) included in an infobox. As an aside, while I don't think this is as much of an issue as some others on this page do, the ownership behavior displayed in quotes like I worked hard on this article over many years and LET IT BE is obviously not to be taken seriously in this discussion. ThadeusOfNazereth(he/him)Talk to Me! 00:43, 7 January 2023 (UTC)[reply]
  • Strong Support for the reasons given by the first editor to comment, Nemov. No earthly reason why this article should be singled out for exceptional treatment now that biographical infoboxes are ubiquitous and their advantages well understood. (Directed here by the notice at Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Novels). MichaelMaggs (talk) 14:52, 15 January 2023 (UTC)[reply]


  • Is there something different about this article than the Laurence Olivier article? I ask this for the people voting no here using the same arguments they used on other articles? This issue keeps popping up via RfC over and over on WP:BIO and WP:BLP. It seems like the many of the same people opposing/support each time, with the same arguments, and slowly over time the infoboxes are added. Isn't this a sign to move on to something else and stop opposing it? Or, maybe there's something unique to this article that hasn't been brought up? The infobox train left the station many years ago. It seems like a better use of time would be to standardize the infoboxes for WP:BIO than to rehash this debate over and over. Thanks! Nemov (talk) 20:42, 4 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
    I agree with standardization. Dronebogus (talk) 20:56, 4 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
  • Frankly, I don't care that much and never really did. But from here, the big difference that anti box are specialist, and peaceful pps that have spent years honing specific bios. Whereas, rightly or wrongly, my perception is that the pro people tend to be obsessed with uniformity to the point of obsession, and seek out those last caves so can "tickg them off", as if a kill list. Also, my impressions is that there has been a lot of socking and a willingness to let that slide, along with a tendency to tolerate stupidity to garder numbers - see above the vacuous "I agree with standardization" which shows no understanding of why data/"facts" in infooxes should be curated. ps, I also have enough self awarness to think this is a really stupid argument during out all short lives. Ceoil (talk) 21:18, 4 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
    {redacted} Dronebogus (talk) 23:36, 4 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
    This comment isn't constructive. Can you please remove it? I want to find a path forward and stop the silly fighting. Thanks! Nemov (talk) 23:38, 4 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
    • It’s too late now, and I highly doubt there’s a peaceful solution here, but I will redact it. Dronebogus (talk) 23:41, 4 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
    I’d also appreciate Ceoil stopping his belittling, passive-aggressive tone. Dronebogus (talk) 23:44, 4 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
    Agree, the claim that "I don't care that much and never really did" doesn't seem to be supported by some of the comments I've seen here so far, but there is a path forward here and we should try to find one. Nemov (talk) 23:50, 4 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
    Fair point Nemov, I meant that I usually hang my head and let it slide, and retain have more self restraint. I totally agree that there is a "there is a path forward here and we should try to find one" fwiw, but worry that any reduced box agreed here will be constantly argued in the coming years as pro box people test boundaries. Sigh :( Ceoil (talk) 03:21, 12 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
    If the projects can agree to infobox parameters that should solve that issue. Some editors probably didn't even know infoboxes were controversial (I certainly didn't know) and just see an article and are bold by adding one unwittingly stepping on the fire ant hill. The scope creep can be managed with templates. Nemov (talk) 03:30, 12 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
    That would be ideal but a bit of a fanciful hope given its mostly opera and early modernist strong holdouts still resisting these days. I'm fine with a very tight box with limited parameters and a strongly worded html wording in edit mode, as have mentioned several times above. But will it be adhered to? Precedent indicates...nope Ceoil (talk) 03:41, 12 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
    I usually hang my head and let it slide, and retain have more self restraint
    I think what you're describing is "controlled self-dispassion"[5] which is a generally good thing to have when everything around you is chaotic.
    [I] worry that any reduced box agreed here will be constantly argued in the coming years as pro box people test boundaries
    I'm happy to stick around, watch this article, and ensure it doesn't expand too much. I think it should be pretty bare-bones, as I've described above, and will be opposed to adding lots and lots of params. — Shibbolethink ( ) 23:16, 12 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
    Shibbolethink, maybe you don't have to stick around. Given this is an RFC, how about we reframe the question so that its about a box with limited parameters (per my suggested box above), and if anybody happens along and expands, we refer them to this or the closing statement? That works for me, and we can all get on with out lives. Anybody know how to reformulate this RFC?. Ceoil (talk) 01:18, 16 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
    I agree that this is a stupid argument, which is why I voted how I believed and haven't engaged further. I'd also like to add that though I do believe an infobox should be added, I don't want to be associated with @Dronebogus, who has been editing in an unconstructive manner. @Ceoil is an editor I respect, and I do not appreciate the way Drone has been speaking to them. Xx78900 (talk) 07:45, 5 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
    Well I don’t appreciate the way he’s been speaking to me. Dronebogus (talk) 15:46, 5 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
    In general this discussion of user conduct is WP:TALKOFFTOPIC here and should probably not be here at all. But if we're doing it anyway, I'd like to add that some of the conduct here is volatile and unnecesarily creating a battleground mentality. Such as "the big difference that anti box are specialist, and peaceful pps that have spent years honing specific bios. Whereas, rightly or wrongly, my perception is that the pro people tend to be obsessed with uniformity to the point of obsession... as if a kill list". Creating "pro" and "anti" camps out of various participating editors is not conducive to resolving disputes or achieving consensus. Can't we all just wait to see what uninvolved editors think? — Shibbolethink ( ) 15:49, 5 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
    Agree, this is as bad as deletionists vs. inclusionists. Dronebogus (talk) 15:52, 5 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
  • Ceoil has it right and I think this is massive time sink given these types of comments. I hadn't realized that right now there are multiple infobox discussions ongoing with editors who've come here involved in those discussions: see Talk:Laurence Olivier, Talk:Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky, Talk:Claude Debussy. This reminds me of times past and not in a good way - i.e a swarming. Re as Ceoil says re short lives - yes. I've had this article on watch since forever and made edits to it, so dragged myself from the self-imposed semi-retirement (b/c of ill health) to comment (for the first time in ages on an i-box), but don't see that there's any appetite to compromise or meet in the middle. Kablammo has it right below to get the fields identified (which I tried to do some days ago). Let's see where that goes. Victoria (tk) 21:52, 4 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Proponents of infoboxes: Please tell us what fields would be included, what would be excluded, and what criteria would be used to make those choices. Kablammo (talk) 21:09, 4 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]

The Stanley Kubrick IB seems like a good example, but quick things users would be looking for in an article are name, image, DOB, DOD, occupation, works, awards, spouses, children, and signature.
I agree that infobox creep could be a problem. Other projects have standardized the box to keep this from happening and changes to the standard IB template are sorted out there. That seems like a good way to prevent overly long IBs. Nemov (talk) 21:18, 4 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Shakespeare wrote almost 200 attributed works. Kablammo (talk) 21:45, 4 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
It would be a link to the full list similar to the example I cited. Nemov (talk) 22:06, 4 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Agreed that infobox creep is a problem, but would say that is a separate issue. "not having an infobox at all" appears to be the equivalent of pouring concrete in a sandbox because some people were drawing inappropriate pictures in it. There are better ways to solve the issue. — Shibbolethink ( ) 15:56, 5 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Agree it's a separate issue, but I'm trying to find a way to forge a consensus point from those who are prepared to fight IBs article by article. There's been a handful of RfCs about this topic just over the last month. After many years, it does appear that this discussion is at a tipping point. The vast majority of our editors have seen infoboxes used for over a decade and the consensus position for many of these debates is going to include the IB. It seems to me like a more constructive use of opposition time to standardize the template. Nemov (talk) 16:04, 5 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Absolutely fair point. I think it's fascinating overall that most naive editors who come to these seem to support adding the IB. if any longterm article editors are concerned, they should rest assured that what and how things are included will be a collective decision! Its not like people are ramming through an infobox with every possible scrap of info. An IB is not the end of the world, and it appears to be what uninvolved users actually want... — Shibbolethink ( ) 16:15, 5 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Shibbolethink it was a needless thing to say, but in my defense, none of the status-que people here are hot off the years long Laurence Olivier crusade.[6]' Ceoil (talk) 03:29, 12 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Yes, I do in general understand why you're frustrating and why a few people here are exasperated over all this. It's understandable. — Shibbolethink ( ) 23:18, 12 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Yes, I think this is a case where readers have been trained to have a clear expectation, and personally I can't see any reason not to add one, given that expectation. Myself, I often use them to quickly navigate to related articles (eg articles on children, spouses, etc) when browsing. I agree that the giant every-possible-field infoboxes are deeply annoying and I can see why longterm editors of any particular article might not relish the idea of having to find consensus for every single line item, but the concern that people will fill the infobox up with useless information is strange to me - can't we just put in a code comment saying "don't add new lines to this infobox without talk page consensus"? -- asilvering (talk) 20:31, 6 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
That would have no effect whatsoever - drive-by IB-fillers take no notice of that sort of thing. Bloat and misinformation is pretty inevitable. Johnbod (talk) 21:22, 6 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Then remove it, like you would anywhere else. It’s a featured article, people watch it like a hawk Dronebogus (talk) 21:32, 6 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Gee, thanks - meanwhile you'll be over the hills and far away, bludgeoning other articles to have infoboxes! It took over 12 hours for the last undiscussed infobox to be removed. Johnbod (talk) 21:48, 6 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Jeez I can put it on my watchlist too you know. Dronebogus (talk) 22:09, 6 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
12 hours, compared to the 21 years this article has existed? Wow, what a travesty. wikipedia is WP:NOTFINISHED. — Shibbolethink ( ) 22:46, 6 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]

I got a ping to participate as I took the lead role during FAR. As I mentioned I want to respect those editors who have worked on this article so long, and were so supportive during the FAR. And as per SandyGeorgia, the WP:FAOWN does have a place here, as I well remember that much of what we were doing was consensus building. On the other hand, I'm certainly open to supporting the infobox movement. Here's what I suggest: The infobox suggested to looks fine to me, except I think Joyce's works should be in chronological order, and Nemov's suggestions seem reasonable to give Nora her due, so mention of the spouse is important. The children could get mentioned.

  • Joyce doesn't need prizes, unless someone wants to put in "Not the Nobel Prize" (A joke about one of the complaints of Joyce aficionados.)
  • Joyce should have a parameter for favorite, or at least most frequently imbibed, alcoholic beverage . Then we could put the white wine of his post-Dublin years, as I suspect a goodly number of folk think its Guinness. (Another joke I probably shouldn't make: I can imagine that this item could wind up as a new parameter in infobox bloat!)

This is six parameters I'm seeing (born, died, occupation, notable works, spouse children) that seems to be capture the common ground. Would that work? Whatever the consensus, I would like to ask that a couple of participants in the infobox movement volunteer to put JJ on their watchlist with the intention of reverting IB bloat when they catch, joining in being a small part of this article's WP:FAOWN. Wtfiv (talk) 03:17, 16 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]

  • Whatever you decide, Wtfiv, is fine w/ me. Victoria (tk) 03:43, 16 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
  • This is a reasonable path forward to me. Thanks!
Nemov (talk) 14:36, 16 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
I agree these are a reasonable six params to use. I agree prizes would not be DUE here, despite the obvious place for a good jab at history. . Happy to put it on the watchlist to avoid more bloat being added without demonstration that it is DUE. — Shibbolethink ( ) 16:15, 17 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Agree with this also. Ceoil (talk) 04:40, 18 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]

It looks like we are close. Nemov and Dronebogus, as two of the initiators of the Infobox discussion regarding this page, would you be willing to put James Joyce on your watchlist and revert infobox bloat beyond what we agreed to as it comes along. (And thank you Shibbolethink for already doing so!) Your help in supporting maintenance be much appreciated, it would reduce perceptions of WP:OWN and broaden WP:FAOWN. If you are good with this, the infobox will be posted and I'll close the RFC. Wtfiv (talk) 16:52, 18 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Of course. Dronebogus (talk) 16:59, 18 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Sure, I'll add it to my watchlist. Thanks for your assistance. Nemov (talk) 16:59, 18 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Thank you! I added the infobox, adding Mr. J's signature to be a lucky seventh parameter. Wtfiv (talk) 01:37, 19 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]

The close was premature and I suggest waiting for all to weigh in, and waiting for an independent closer. SandyGeorgia (Talk) 02:19, 19 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
“All”? Who is “all”? The entire encyclopedia? Enough votes to get a desired result? Dronebogus (talk) 02:34, 19 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Continued on your talk page. SandyGeorgia (Talk) 02:43, 19 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Sandy, I assumed since that the most engaged parties- and a couple of long-term editors that I respect and have some WP:FAOWN in this article- had agreed to a solution, it's done. But I have no problem letting it continue, I certainly don't want to close it if further discussion is productive and any editor feels it should continue. I do feel my close was within the spirit of the WP:RFCEND as I understood it: An RfC should last until enough comment has been received that consensus is reached, or until it is apparent that it won't be. There is no required minimum or maximum duration;,The RfC participants can agree to end it at any time; one of them removes the {{rfc}} template... Please remove the {{rfc}} tag when the dispute has been resolved, or when discussion has ended. Previous to this note, I had put an infobox in the article, but feel free to revert it. Wtfiv (talk) 02:59, 19 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
I already reverted it and it was editwarred back in. The close was too quick; on a contentious issue, reversing long-standing consensus, the RFC should run its full course and be closed by someone with no involvement. I had not weighed in, did not see the RFC as close to closing so was letting my wrist heal, and I consider what has happened here problematic if not disruptive, and a proper response warrants typing my response sans sprained wrist. If/when the RFC is re-closed, considering the unlikelihood that those who wanted the infobox will be around for the next go-round, there should be a statement about the conclusion by an uninvolved closer. Considering the number of editors who have had to deal with faulty infobox insertions here for over a decade, I hope all have contemplated the future of this article once those who wanted the infobox have moved on, and the past issues recur. SandyGeorgia (Talk) 03:07, 19 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
considering the unlikelihood that those who wanted the infobox will be around for the next go-round
Please remember to assume good faith of other wikipedia editors. Thanks. FWIW, I agree with you that this RFC should run its course before anyone closes, as wiki's work is never done and we are on no deadlines. — Shibbolethink ( ) 15:40, 19 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Continued on your talk page. SandyGeorgia (Talk) 19:54, 19 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
PS, I will add my six cents tomorrow or next day, when sprained wrist is better for typing. SandyGeorgia (Talk) 02:20, 19 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Dronebogus please stop edit warring over your preference. Wtfiv this RFC should have run its course (it was only initiated on Dec 3), and considering the contentiousness and the consensus for well over a decade, should have had a strictly uninvolved closer. Please revert your premature close. I sprained my wrist last week, and additionally, my computer was in repair for a new hard drive,[7] so I have put off responding here. Such a quick close on such an important FA was not something reasonably envisioned; I will add my feedback tomorrow or next when wrist allows for more typing. SandyGeorgia (Talk) 02:36, 19 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Dronebogus, it really isn't appropriate for the proposer to close a contested RFC. If you think it is ready to close, you can post a request at WP:RFCLOSE to get attention from an uninvolved closer. --RL0919 (talk) 03:50, 19 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Dronebogus didn't close the RFC; Wtfiv (now the article's main editor) closed the RFC. I reverted the close as premature, too involved, and Dronbogus then reverted my revert. SandyGeorgia (Talk) 03:56, 19 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Thanks for clarifying; I should have reviewed the Talk page history first instead of assuming based on the article history. Still, best to have someone entirely uninvolved do the closing. --RL0919 (talk) 04:03, 19 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
  • There was a growing consensus to include the infobox and Wtfiv took the lead and was making pragmatic choices. This same story has played out in several identical RfC discussions the past 6 weeks. It's disappointing that another editor didn't review the TALK for the past week and started making reverts. I'm going to unwatch this article for now. Someone can ping me when the inevitable outcome is finalized. Thanks Nemov (talk) 04:44, 19 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
    This has been open almost an entire month. I think this has been discussed to death, and changing the completely fair, hard-won original compromise because of a couple trickle-in votes seems like pandering to the filibusterers. Unless there’s an objection I’m closing this by the 1st of January. Dronebogus (talk) 10:38, 31 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
    Object. It needs a neutral third-party objective closer. And it's best to wait the extra few days past the holidays for the full 30 days. Victoria (tk) 19:24, 31 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
    Should we just accept that this is going to be dragged out to the point of “no consensus” by last-minute no-argument votes like the one that just happened so it can be brought up AGAIN in 4 months? Dronebogus (talk) 20:59, 31 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
    To clarify I think your objection is reasonable but I’m desperately trying to be pragmatic here. Do you know how unbelievably rare a productive compromise on this situation is? Dronebogus (talk) 21:00, 31 December 2022 (UTC)[reply]
    I should just no consensus this now. It’s obvious that until there’s an actual policy of standardized infobox use the top 3 users will be given carte blanche to block infoboxes on “their” articles. Dronebogus (talk) 13:51, 1 January 2023 (UTC)[reply]
    I would say there's no reason not to implement the compromise discussed above, which is agreed upon by several of the highest frequency contributors here. — Shibbolethink ( ) 00:24, 3 January 2023 (UTC)[reply]
    I agree, but the only way to resolve that is by a re-start. I mean, its going to be back here in a few months anyway :( Ceoil (talk) 00:27, 3 January 2023 (UTC)[reply]

Issues with new vector skin[edit]

  • I have no doubt that an IB will eventually be forced on this page (possibly as a result of this non-neutrally worded RFC). If that day does come, I would advise to keep it as short as humanly possible. With the new 2022 Vector skin being implemented across the site, the list of contents is being removed from between the lead and the first section and moved to the left-hand side of the screen. This means that even a moderate IB will already be dipping into the sections below. Looking at the new abomination on Laurence Olivier, because it's been populated by unimportant fluff (like partners, numbers of children and "years active"), the image of his childhood home is pushed down the page and now causes WP:SANDWICHING with another image. This is not ideal. Even less ideal is Winston Churchill when the IB and navbox push the early images from his birth section (1889 picture) to the section of him as an MP in 1901! Only the eighth photograph in the body is actually in line with where it is supposed to be. Lose-lose all round. - SchroCat (talk) 15:01, 20 January 2023 (UTC)[reply]
    Much of this has to do with the resolution and size of the screen you're viewing content on. I don't have any of these problems on my 13" macbook. — Shibbolethink ( ) 15:49, 20 January 2023 (UTC)[reply]
  • That's nice for you, just as long as you're happy then that's all OK. The 'sod you, Jack, I'm alright' school of reader awareness lives on, I see. - SchroCat (talk) 16:23, 20 January 2023 (UTC)[reply]
    I'm not saying it's totally fine, just saying that your experience is not universal! That clearly is an annoying thing about the new vector that you're describing in your setup. Personally, I just think the new vector design is terrible, provides no benefits, and shouldn't be defaulted for all not-logged-in users. I switched as soon as I could (but yes, I did check these formatting things on the new skin). I think that would be a much better solution than modifying our content so thoroughly to fit aesthetics for only new-skin users on only some setups. — Shibbolethink ( ) 16:43, 20 January 2023 (UTC)[reply]
  • "new-skin users on only some setups": it's the default for all those with no account, which will cover most of the casual readers on this site, given the majority of readers don't have an account when they visit WP. There's no point in ignoring something just because you can log in and go back to the older view: the problem will be there for most casual readers. For those of us who actually develop content for readers, it is a very real problem that needs to be addressed, regardless how blithely one dismisses it. SchroCat (talk) 16:51, 20 January 2023 (UTC)[reply]
    For those of us who actually develop content for readers... regardless how blithely one dismisses it
    Please strike these personal attacks and assume good faith moving forwards. Thanks — Shibbolethink ( ) 17:10, 20 January 2023 (UTC)[reply]
  • There is no personal attack here: I have described how I edit WP as a content developer, not how anyone does. Please assume good faith and don't assume everything other people write is automatically a personal attack. - SchroCat (talk) 17:25, 20 January 2023 (UTC)[reply]
  • Hi Schro, thanks for raising this here. It is an issue that we have to take into consideration; I meant to post about it myself but decided to wait. Shibbolethink, we have to take the readers into consideration, not what we see on our screens. I'm seeing issues on every single article but need to spend some time w/ screen resolutions, browsers, other devices etc., to see what's best. Image squash and oversize infobox problems have been reported elsewhere so it seems to be a valid problem. Victoria (tk) 17:14, 20 January 2023 (UTC)[reply]
    Image squash and oversize infobox problems have been reported elsewhere so it seems to be a valid problem
    Definitely a valid problem, but may only be a problem at certain resolutions and screen sizes. For instance, this would not be an issue at all on mobile (~52% of views)[8].
    I would say there are probably more creative solutions like modifying the Lua modules employed in these infoboxes to make them more responsive in width and spacing to the current resolution or Template:clear usage to find a best-posible solution which incorporates multiple viewpoints. Simply saying "this is a reason to not use infoboxes" seems quite short-sighted to me. — Shibbolethink ( ) 17:17, 20 January 2023 (UTC)[reply]
off topic
The following discussion has been closed. Please do not modify it.
  • Just sigh. Generally listening dispassionately is helpul. Accusing people of saying what they haven't, isn't. Empathy is good. Accusations = bad. Victoria (tk) 17:20, 20 January 2023 (UTC)[reply]
    I could not agree more. That is why I have provided direct templated quotes when referencing what other users have said. I understand the reasoning for bringing up these issues. I get why it is clearly a problem for some users. Let's collaborate on creative solutions which incorporate the viewpoints of those with multiple different viewpoints on infoboxes. — Shibbolethink ( ) 17:23, 20 January 2023 (UTC)[reply]
  • "Simply saying "this is a reason to not use infoboxes" seems quite short-sighted to me": could you point out exactly where I have said that or something close to that? My opening comment was about the brevity of a possible future IB. Misrepresenting others (particularly using quote marks to suggest a direct quote) isn't terribly helpful or constructive. - SchroCat (talk) 17:26, 20 January 2023 (UTC)[reply]
    could you point out exactly where I have said that
    I never said you did and I wasn't attempting to describe your position. You do seem quite dissatisfied or disappointed with the pages you've described having infoboxes above or having as many parameters as they do currently (correct me if I'm wrong), but I never said you specifically are referencing this as a reason not to have them. You have only said it is a "lose-lose" situation. — Shibbolethink ( ) 17:29, 20 January 2023 (UTC)[reply]
  • (edit conflict) x 3 If I haven't said it, don't put it in quote marks: that's misleading. The inferences you've drawn from what I wrote are a long way from what I actually wrote. I'm going to drop out of this now; you could start an argument in an empty room, and my time on WP doesn't need a combative environment full of misquotes and misleading and misrepresentative nonsense. - SchroCat (talk) 17:40, 20 January 2023 (UTC)[reply]
    Next time I have a discussion with you, I'll be sure to use single ' marks instead of " when referencing theoretical ideas. I thought the clear usage of the tq template for each and every actual quote of someone else would have been enough, but I appreciate your feedback. Have a nice day. — Shibbolethink ( ) 17:43, 20 January 2023 (UTC)[reply]
I exclusively use mobile. If this was so bad it would have prevented a huge majority of biographies and other articles from having boxes. This is yet another weird, desperate excuse not to have something simple and universal. Dronebogus (talk) 17:35, 20 January 2023 (UTC)[reply]
Well, to be fair DB, SC is describing this as an issue now because the new vector skin has been just implemented in the past few days for desktop users. No one actually said that above which is probably why it's confusing. It wouldn't have been an issue until now, and people are still figuring out the impact of the new skin on all these pages. Personally all of this is why I think having it as default is a terrible idea (and would be great fodder for a Village pump thread). — Shibbolethink ( ) 17:36, 20 January 2023 (UTC)[reply]
If it’s what I think it is (Vector 2022), I hate that skin anyway. Dronebogus (talk) 17:38, 20 January 2023 (UTC)[reply]
Yep. I don't really know what the decision-making process was for implementing it site-wide for logged-out users. WMF or community? My guess is WMF implemented it because it's nicer on server usage costs or something like that. — Shibbolethink ( ) 17:39, 20 January 2023 (UTC)[reply]
It appears most discussion of the new vector skin is happening over at WP:VPT — Shibbolethink ( ) 17:41, 20 January 2023 (UTC)[reply]
(edit conflict) x 3 Don't be silly. The vector has only just been released and there are a whole raft of complaints about it - this is just one more problem it brings out. As I've had to say above, what you have said is a misrepresentation of what I wrote. Perhaps you should try reading my opening comment, where I make no such claim. - SchroCat (talk) 17:40, 20 January 2023 (UTC)[reply]
Well I see you complaining about my RFC’s “wording” and bemoaning infoboxes, so I’m reading between the lines a little. Correct me if I’m wrong Dronebogus (talk) 17:43, 20 January 2023 (UTC)[reply]
You're wrong. Very wrong. Read my opening comment properly. - SchroCat (talk) 17:46, 20 January 2023 (UTC)[reply]
This discussion is going nowhere extremely fast. I propose closing it with template:archive top so we can avoid further disruption, hostility, and off-topic meandering here. SC made their point, it seems quite a bit more relevant to WP:VPT than it is here. I'm not proposing collapsing because there's no reason to de-emphasize what is already here, and it is clearly valuable insofar as it stands as a recommendation to limit IB length if and when implemented. — Shibbolethink ( ) 18:17, 20 January 2023 (UTC)[reply]
I have already said I am out of this, but I would object to this being closed. If the RFC above goes to needing to implement an IB, this is a point that needs to taken into account. And for crying out loud, can you make a comment and leave it alone? The edit conflicts are a time-wasting pain in the neck. - SchroCat (talk) 18:22, 20 January 2023 (UTC)[reply]
And for crying out loud, can you make a comment and leave it alone? The edit conflicts are a time-wasting pain in the neck
Nothing about the way I edit is against policy, or even recommended against in any policy or guideline. See WP:TALK#REPLIED. If you want to change that, you're welcome to propose something at WT:TPG.
As for the edit conflicts, that sucks and I understand how frustrating it can be, I've certainly had it become annoying to me in the past as well. But reply-tool, convenient discussions, and various other plugins remove this as an issue entirely by re-submitting edits when a conflict occurs. — Shibbolethink ( ) 19:16, 20 January 2023 (UTC)[reply]
OK, so it's a pain for other editors, but as it's not specifically against policy, you're fine with carrying on doing it? Even though you edit nearly every single one of your comments more than once? Even though you could write out in word first and think before editing and posting, you're OK with it annoying other editors? OK, that's fine - I guess that says a lot. - SchroCat (talk) 20:05, 20 January 2023 (UTC)[reply]
Oppose archiving the thread.
Shibbolethink, please don't refactor people's comments - which are placed where they are because of edit conflicts. Previewing edits before hitting save is a good practice on discussion pages. Also, it's not really necessary to blue link everything - the editors here are well aware of TPO, etc. Victoria (tk) 20:17, 20 January 2023 (UTC)[reply]
I will continue to put people's comments below mine which were made after mine, per TPG. You can also view it as me moving my comments to their proper place in the discussion thread. Thanks for the advice. If you wish to revert it, you are welcome to do so, and I don't feel strongly enough to edit war about it. That's BRD. But there is no reason to believe your comment was started before anyone else's, and thus the submission time is used to thread discussions per custom. — Shibbolethink ( ) 20:20, 20 January 2023 (UTC)[reply]
  • SchroCat, so I've looked at this diff with infobox, using Vector 2022, on a laptop, font boosted to 125%, resolution is down a bit (all of these personal hacks help prevent migraines), and it looks like it will be okay if kept short. With my set-up the lead is reduced to a very narrow column but there isn't any infobox bleed into the next section and I'm not seeing immediate text squash.
    I also looked at it with 100% font, increased screen resolution, changed browsers a couple of times, and it still looks fine. But that's what I see, so comments from others would be helpful. I'd be curious to know what happens with a large monitor, high resolution, toggled to full screen - which will shrink the lead and might cause bleed into the next section.
    The caveat is that the shorter the box, the better. Also to clarify, I've not yet struck my oppose, fwiw. Victoria (tk) 22:21, 20 January 2023 (UTC)[reply]
    Adding; if I put the font to 100%, have full screen resolution and toggle to full screen, then the box goes to bottom para of the lead. Any more fields and it will bleed through to the next section. I don't have a big monitor any longer so will need someone else to test that. Victoria (tk) 22:26, 20 January 2023 (UTC)[reply]

It seems likely that the amount of white space in vector 2022 (don't get me started) is going to be reduced in a few weeks. Also to SchroCat the consensus here seems to be veering towards a much reduced infobox, with additional parameters only agreed by consensus on talk, with most of the most vocal pro-box voters agreeing to help police. Shibbolethink you have certainly been refactoring comments, but. As we have been so close to closing this with mutual agreement, I'd be inclined to cool it and move on (espc can SC and Dronebogus calm down). Ceoil (talk) 02:24, 21 January 2023 (UTC)[reply]

  • Hi Ceoil, As you know I'm nearly always calm - being misrepresented and misquoted is run of the mill at IB discussions, even when the point of the post was about what would happen when an IB is put here. I don't know why there was so much hostility and aggro for talking about what would happen when an IB is put in place, but there you go! (As an aside, I'll point out that when I visited the Olivier box yesterday for the first time in a while, I noticed three extra fields have already been added by passing editors, so caveat emptor on the promises of an 'always-tight IB'!) Cheers - SchroCat (talk) 10:56, 21 January 2023 (UTC)[reply]
    Yeah but, your not as fucking calm as me :) The deal is that User:Wtfiv, who did a complete rewrite at FAR last year has final say; we are all inclined to trust him, is the general feeling. Ceoil (talk) 16:35, 21 January 2023 (UTC)[reply]
Same 100% font on V2022 on a desktop (set to 1920 x 1080) using MS Edge on this diff
  • Hi Victoria, This is what happens on my desktop with the same diff. I know there are a myriad of screen sizes, resolutions and customisations that go on, but this is what I see, which is the box intruding into the first section. It only affects the positioning on one image (at the moment), but given IB do swell, regardless of promises made at any point, it may well cause problems for some people later. I'm de-watching this now, as I'm sure it can all be sorted without me. Cheers - SchroCat (talk) 10:56, 21 January 2023 (UTC)[reply]
    Thanks Schro, that's very helpful. I'm too lazy to upload screenshots, so I appreciate seeing what it looks like on a larger screen than I have access to.
    Ceoil, yes, Wtfiv put forward a compromise but it's a formal RFC and other voices won't/shouldn't be ignored in my view.
    Also, I think it's worth having this discussion here or anywhere else; seeing screenshots or reporting how things render w/ different monitors, i.e laptop, desktop monitor, etc., is helpful. At least to me it's helpful to get a sense of how much reformatting will be needed on various articles. From the screenshot above it does look like there will be some bleed from lead into the next section - I wonder if we can do without the signature - it's a little overwhelming? If not, maybe shrink that file? Victoria (tk) 17:37, 21 January 2023 (UTC)[reply]
    I prefer to loose the sig; takes up too much space, and anyway who cares? Ceoil (talk) 18:26, 21 January 2023 (UTC)[reply]
    Agreed; we don't need the sig. That will help w/ space issues. Victoria (tk) 22:28, 21 January 2023 (UTC)[reply]
The discussion above is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

Post RfC[edit]

@Wtfiv: now that the RfC is closed you can move forward with the infobox we discussed earlier. I can watch this article if necessary. Thanks for your help on this issue. Nemov (talk) 15:44, 25 January 2023 (UTC)[reply]

Per the close, it appears the consensus infobox would be as follows (birth, death, occupation, notable works, spouse, children, and signature) (see the version @Ingenuity added here). As they are the most uninvolved and thus most qualified to perceive consensus here, I am inclined to agree with their implementation and think we should protect it as consensus moving forwards.
And to forestall any sniping, yes I would be saying that regardless of which parameters they had included. In these things, there is a process. Disputing their assessment of the consensus IB would require one to dispute the close, meaning such a person should discuss with them on their talk page, and then if still unsatisfied, head over to closure review.
Basically the only difference was whether or not to include a sig. I agree there were a few people who were emphatic about not wanting the signature. But I also agree with the closer that this was not enough opposition to overrule the multiple people who earlier had advocated for the signature's inclusion. I personally am pretty lukewarm about including the sig, but I do think on balance it is a positive inclusion, with very little sacrificed to space.— Shibbolethink ( ) 16:58, 25 January 2023 (UTC)[reply]
I’m apathetic, but I do agree that it’s pretty much useless and we can ditch it if there’s clutter concerns Dronebogus (talk) 18:24, 25 January 2023 (UTC)[reply]
I'll put the info box up right after this comment. The signature wasn't really a topic of discussion. It's addition was my suggestion following a point made by Kablammo. But two of the editors who helped get this through FAR suggest losing it and it wasn't a topic of discussion otherwise, so I'll leave it out. Wtfiv (talk) 18:53, 25 January 2023 (UTC)[reply]
I saw the box was already added. I deleted the signature as per final discussion. But if anybody wants to put it back in, please do! Wtfiv (talk) 18:55, 25 January 2023 (UTC)[reply]
I'm fine either way. Thanks! Nemov (talk) 19:02, 25 January 2023 (UTC)[reply]
I prefer without a sig, but not a big deal. Great to see post a heated RFC consensus at work ! :) Ceoil (talk) 22:57, 26 January 2023 (UTC)[reply]
Dronebogus - although we had harsh words above, its great to see you abiding by the closing comments and giving latitude re the sig. Ceoil (talk) 23:09, 26 January 2023 (UTC)[reply]

Joyce views on Ireland and England[edit]

I recently removed this from Nelson's Pillar where I felt it was off topic. I am unsure if this is due here, so I'll leave this on talk for interested editors to discuss and possibly incorporate.

Joyce shared Yeats's view that Ireland's association with England was an essential element in a shared history, and asked: "Tell me why you think I ought to change the conditions that gave Ireland and me a shape and a destiny?"[1]


  1. ^ Kennedy 2013, p. 62.

Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus| reply here 03:29, 25 March 2023 (UTC)[reply]

It an interesting quote. I think the section on his British passport catches his ambiguous relationship to the United Kingdom, but my preference would be to not incorporate it. The second-hand quote comes from Budgen's memoirs of Joyce in Zürich, James Joyce and the making of Ulysses. The context is Joyce responding to Budgen advocating for Irish Home Rule in the aftermath of WWI. The following paragraphs suggests Joyce's response may be ironic, as Budgen was being paid by British government's Ministry of Information at the time. Wtfiv (talk) 04:41, 25 March 2023 (UTC)[reply]
Agree that the claim is shaky and anyway not for this page. Ceoil (talk) 03:22, 2 April 2023 (UTC)[reply]

Technically, isn't he British?[edit]

By all accounts he refused an Irish passport and would have only a British one. Using the convention typical on here, doesn't that make him a British poet? Yes, I get he was born in Ireland at a time it was British, but there is also the convention of stating those Yorkshire born back in the period of "the Ridings" carry that as their place of birth despite it being defunct (e.g West Riding even if today that is now South Yorkshire). He identified his official nationality for passport purposes as British. There are many British who today were born as expatriates or in Africa, who are regarded as "British" because just like Joyce, they carry a British passport. 2A00:23C8:3D12:7401:D554:BBC:528C:1ACC (talk) 07:52, 22 June 2023 (UTC)[reply]

per MOS:CITIZEN, its more about what Joyce is most often "known as" not how he himself identified. How is he most often referred to in secondary and tertiary sources? Scholars set the tone for how Wikipedia is written.
I believe "Irish novelist" is the most common per ngrams
Encyclopedia Britannica: Irish novelist
The Atlantic: Irish novelist
Vanity Fair: Irish novelist
Beja's James Joyce : a literary life refers to him most often as Irish
As does Gordon's James Joyce : a new biography and Bulson's The Cambridge Introduction to James Joyce — Shibbolethink ( ) 11:02, 22 June 2023 (UTC)[reply]
I don't think Joyce situation is remotely comparable to British people born in British colonies or the Ridings. Someone like Tolkien for example had English parents and moved back to England as a child. Joyce on the other hand was an ethnic Irishman born and raised in the country Ireland (part of the UK) and all of his notable works were set in Ireland. So he's described as Irish for the same reason Tolkien is described as English and Robert Burns is described as Scottish. See WP:UKNATIONALS and MOS:CITIZEN. Stevenbfg (talk) 18:17, 16 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]

Joyce and Religion[edit]

Quarkney, I reverted the additional material you added based on a critiques inference of Joyce's beliefs based on the statements of his characters. You had added a similar paragraph about Joyce's mockery of religion in his fiction, and then some of the conclusions a critic had drawn about Joyce's attitude. One editor modified it to point out that the statement was a critic's opinion. I shortened it a bit more to highlight the verifiable statement that Joyce's fiction critiques and ridicules Catholicism (I kept the source provided, but formatted it to remain consistent with this article as per the Wikipedia Manual of Style.)

Maybe the point to be made needs more discussion? This section already points out that Joyce had a complex relationship with Catholicism, that includes a rejection of much of it. But his explicit statements are frequently ambiguous. It is quite possible that the points made by the critique you cite may actually reflect how Joyce felt. But I do think presenting inferences from an author's literary constructions as firm statements about the author's personal beliefs is problematic. This is particularly the case for James Joyce, the critical literature is far from unanimous about the consistency of his thought on Catholicism. Wtfiv (talk) 20:28, 27 November 2023 (UTC)[reply]

To add, @Quarkney, this is a featured article with an established citation style (using shortened footnotes and the {{sfn}} template). Can you please make sure that your edits match the same style (or obtain consensus on this page to change it)? I've fixed your most recent changes for you (though I'm not sure that it wouldn't have been better to revert them pending this discussion). Thanks, Wham2001 (talk) 20:22, 28 November 2023 (UTC)[reply]
Sorry, that ping should be to @Quarkny. Wham2001 (talk) 20:25, 28 November 2023 (UTC)[reply]
Thanks for writing to me. You say more discussion may be needed. I agree. I've been trying to include what the section lacks, an opposing viewpoint. I'm sorry I'm not permitted to state it outright, which I did initially. I have no recourse but to work it in piecemeal. "His explicit statements are frequently ambiguous"? His early statements not at all. If you mean later statements, there's only one example given, which I think is probably the only one. "Catholic critics"? An oxymoron? No believer can be at all objective, especially a priest. And of course one can draw "inferences from an author's literary constructions as firm statements about the author's personal beliefs." It's unreasonable, a sort of wishful thinking, to conclude that Joyce's numerous, precise, complex, elaborate parodies are anything other than expressions of disbelief and disgust. Joyce's extensive familiarity with all things Catholic has often been mistaken for lingering faith. For some, maybe many, it's impossible to accept that Joyce could detest what he knew so much about. Quarkny (talk) 22:47, 28 November 2023 (UTC)[reply]
I think the viewpoint that Joyce was not Catholic is in the first paragraph, and elsewhere in the article. It is the paragraph by the Catholic critiques that is offering the opposing viewpoint. I think that any claims may have to be piecemeal. Part of the issue is that I think that using Lang as the main source to show that Joyce hated everything about the Catholic church is difficult (e.g., see the second half of the second Chapter where he argues about Joyce using Aquinas for his own aesthetic program.) Lang frequently emphasizes Joyce's ambivalence. For example, on page 16, Lang makes it clear that he sees Joyce as anti-catholic, but on the same page points out that his comments on Catholicism in his fiction are "motivated by repulsion as well as attraction."
Here's some edits I've made to the citations including Lang:
  • In the citation that describes where Joyce critiques and parodies the Latin Mass, I reduced the page citation to page 15 where Lang explicitly makes his case and created a convenience link so readers can verify the point with a click.
  • I put the citations where Lang and McCourt discuss Joyce learning about the Greek Orthodox rite in Trieste in sfn format. I no longer have access to the McCourt, so I couldn't verify it, but I did put a convenience link to where Lang directly discusses Joyce's introduction to the Mass in Trieste.
  • The quality of Joyce's parodies being derived from his Jesuitical background has no citation. The cited sections mainly provide detailed examples of Joyce's parodies, but this point was explicitly mentioned earlier with the Lang p. 15 reference. Lang also mentions Joyce's Jesuit education, but this point has also been addressed by other authors. I couldn't find where Lang explicitly states that the quality of Joyce's parodies is a product of his education. (In fact, both the introduction and Chapter 2 on Greek rites suggest that it may be just as well due to his constant attendance of both Latin and Greek rite masses.) Is there a citation where Lang makes this claim outright?
  • The statement that Joyce enjoyed the Greek Orthodox Mass because he saw it as a parody of the Latin mass is not stated by Lang. Rather, in the cited sections, Lang is illustrating how Joyce used the Greek Mass to parody the Latin Mass in his art, focusing on the rewriting of "The Sisters." In later citations, he'll show how the ritual of the Greek Mass is used in Ulysses, which is alluded to in the section you added about the Greek Mass in Trieste. Lang's analysis of Joyce's attitude toward the Greek Mass seems more cautious. He states on p. 28 that Joyce remained interested but critical of the Greek church, and he uses a quote from A Portrait to argue that Joyce saw more "semblance of reality" in the Greek Orthodox rite. So for now, I removed this line.
Also, I changed the citations that you put in <ref> format to sfn format. Both Lang and McCourt are in the sources of the article, so the sfn should work. As per WP:CITEVAR changing reference style should not be done without discussion and consensus, and for featured articles, the style needs to be consistent. Wtfiv (talk) 17:34, 29 November 2023 (UTC)[reply]
Too much to deal with all at once. Let me start with something simple. Offering Joyce's attendance at religious ceremonies, Greek Orthodox or otherwise, as evidence of a vestigial faith is extremely lame. Those sentences should be cut in any event. Yes, he attended the Holy Thursday and Good Friday services. As several non-Catholic critics have pointed out, he drew upon their unique elements in Catholic liturgy--stripping of the altars, lack of a Consecration. One of the many methods Joyce employs is his attacks on the Church is to use its own symbolism against it. In this case, the imagery of a temporary Godforsaken condition will appear in Ulysses to imply a permanent state. Joyce wrote to his brother that when he attended the Greek rite he found his first version of "The Sisters" "rather remarkable." To him, it too was a parody of the Catholic Mass. In rewriting the story, he incorporated elements of the Greek rite to enhance its parodic effect. The final version of "The Sisters" is a devastating assault on Catholic's doctrine of the Eucharist.
That's it. At least for now. The problems my contributions are said to have caused--and I have to admit I can't understand all that much of the criticism--are due to the fact that I'm forced to work them into the comments already there. I haven't the space for providing supporting evidence. At first, I didn't think this would be a problem. There is no evidence in any of the commentary. Just assertions. This isn't scholarship. Quarkny (talk) 23:49, 29 November 2023 (UTC)[reply]
I don't believe Joyce's attendance is cited as evidence of vestigal faith in this article. The topic of the paragraph of the sentence, as I understand it, is Joyce's complex relationship with religion. It begins with his rejection of the church as documented and his behavior. Lang's work of literary criticism also addresses Joyce's complex relationship to Catholicism. Personally, I'm sympathetic to Lang's thesis that one of Joyce's goals was to use the church's symbols to criticize it and advance his own beliefs regarding the role of the artist in society.
The problem here is the accuracy of the paraphrase. In Chapter 2, Lang does not state that Joyce found the Greek Mass a parody of the Catholic Mass, but he used the Greek mass to parody the Catholic Mass in "The Sisters" and Ulysses. So, that statement does not reflect Lang's point. Can it be reworded so it accurately reflects the source? My suggestion would be to put the points that he used the mass as a parody in "The Sisters" and "Ulysses" to critique Catholic ritual in the Trieste section, extending the sentence you added. Mentioning there that he used the Greek rites to parody the Latin Mass would reflect Lang's point.
This is unrelated to the issue of representing the citations correctly, but I too agree that "The Sisters" is a powerful critique of Catholicism in Ireland, and does so in part by parodying its rites.
Finally, please note the point made by Wham2001 above. As part of the Wikipedia Manual of Style (e.g., WP:CITEVAR), the citation style of an article should not be changed without consensus. Please add any citations in sfn instead of <ref> as sfn is the style used in this article. The sources you use are already part of the bibliography so it should be no problem. Wtfiv (talk) 01:27, 30 November 2023 (UTC)[reply]
"A number of Catholic critics suggest that Joyce never fully abandoned his faith, wrestling with it in his writings and becoming increasingly reconciled with it." Two of the critics are Catholic priests. What else would they "suggest"? There is no evidence. And by "evidence," I don't mean a single offhand comment attributed to him, but cogent, detailed textual interpretation. They (two of them priests) insist that "the critical views of religion expressed by Stephen, the protagonist of A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man and Ulysses, do not represent the views of Joyce the author." "Insist"? Based on what? In Ulysses, Joyce uses the orthodox doctrine of the Incarnation, which Stephen has cites, to identify him as his "consubstantial son." Using the heretical doctrine associated with Photius, he identifies Stephen as his "voice." Joyce speaks through Stephen. (Stephen's Hamlet theory is essentially the lecture Joyce delivered in Trieste.) Yes, this is an interpretation, one based on close analysis of his text and the Catholic and heretical doctrine he has Stephen cite. What can "Catholic critics" offer by way of refutation? Quarkny (talk) 03:12, 30 November 2023 (UTC)[reply]
There's no issue with adding comments to counter the Catholic critics.
The issue here are different, source verification:
There are now three additions that appear to misrepresent Lang. Maybe reliable sources that directly make the point can be cited.
  • Lang does state that Joyce attended Greek orthodox mass because he saw it as a parody. He states he attended it and used it to parody the Latin Mass in the sisters. pp. 26-28
  • Lang gives many examples of Joyce elaborately parodying the Latin Mass in the cited first chapter, but does not claim it is due to his Jesuit education.
  • In the pages cited,(for example, the cited p. 21 (where Lang states that Bloom is Joyce's soul) Lang asserts that Stephen is Joyce's voice, not that Joyce claims that it his own voice.
I think sources can be found for all but the first source (and maybe that one). At this point, I removed the point that Joyce attended Greek Mass because it was a parody, but the point you added about Joyce using the mass to parody the Latin Mass remains. For the other two points, I put a verification needed tag, as there needs to be a source that explicitly makes those points. If there is a page number in which Lang explicitly makes those points, please cite it and we'll link it to a convenience link so others can verify it.
In addition, you continue to add <ref> citations when the article is using sfn format, working against WP:CITEVAR Wtfiv (talk) 15:31, 30 November 2023 (UTC)[reply]
I realize now I’ve been wrong. Not about Joyce, but about Wikipedia, its purpose. I goto Wikipedia when I need to learn about something or someone I’m ignorant of. I look for facts. I sometimes encounter theories or interpretations, but they’re never defended or challenged. They’re recorded. Wikipedia isn’t the place to make arguments, but to record them those made by reputable sources.
So it’s a fact that some critics have stated in print that they believe Joyce never completely abandoned his faith. These statements are theories, to be challenged elsewhere perhaps, but not on Wikipedia, where they are items of information.
With “Joyce and religion,” I mistook statements of fact as evidence to support the theory that Joyce had retained at least a vestige of faith in Catholicism. I was reacting to what I took to be unfair favoritism being shown to Catholic critics. Yet I still think the section needs to be amended, particularly at the beginning. I think that the numerous allusions to Catholicism in Joyce should be mentioned, and added to Joyce’s statements as a young man should be a reference to Stephen’s rebellion, the issue of whether he speaks for Joyce saved for later. I have other ideas as well. My other “contributions” can be eliminated, with maybe one exception. Quarkny (talk) 19:56, 30 November 2023 (UTC)[reply]
I think you make a good point. When working through the article, some editors had cited more Catholic-oriented authors that Joyce's ambiguity reflected that he may have retained his faith. I think that is a tenuous hypothesis. I think that you could find a couple of authors who state that he rejected it utterly, and cite the exact page where they say it, you've got it. They'd be perfect to add to the end of the second paragraph. But at this point, Lang isn't the source. His work is a bit too nuanced- focused on how how Joyce's fiction parodies the church, but also focusing on how Joyce transfers the church's symbolism to the ideal of the artist- to make the point definitely. I have no doubt that reliable sources are out there in the literature.
Please don't misunderstand my concern about sources. I think your contributions so far have been valuable. The point should be made that Joyce's fiction is a critique of Catholicism that ridicules the church. I also think the point that he used the Catholic Mass in his fiction as a lever to critique the Catholic church is a good insight too. Both of these are well documented by Lang.
I'd still suggest getting that you use the sfn format with this article, and if you feel comfortable doing so, using convenience links that allow any reader to see exactly the text you are citing. I'll help with that if the source is accessible. Wtfiv (talk) 08:15, 1 December 2023 (UTC)[reply]
Good advice. Thanks. But I was surprised to see that the contributions I made yesterday were gone. It was a lot of work. I'm still at the point of adding evidence from Joyce's texts. I'm afraid to do more 2603:7000:9700:8D83:507F:B188:91BC:2EE9 (talk) 13:33, 1 December 2023 (UTC)[reply]
I think this last post was Quarkny? Please don't delete text that is in the article. This was created during the featured article review and overseen by multiple authors. I also wanted to mention that repeatedly quoting characters in Joyce's fiction- such as Daedalus or Bloom- is not a compelling argument about Joyce's belief, particularly since Joyce treats all his characters with critical irony.
Once more I'd suggest getting sources that directly state the Joyce was vehemently anti-Catholic. (I'd suggest at least two.) The critical literature is massive, so this shouldn't be too difficult. Then put these critics opinion in the second paragraph that discusses the Catholic Critics as a simple statement. The point could go at the front or the end of the paragraph. Wtfiv (talk) 16:58, 2 December 2023 (UTC)[reply]
Why are my "contributions" deleted as soon as I make them? At one point, I was simply correcting grammatical errors. I'm trying to follow your advice. Also, the "non serviam" business should be referred to early in the section. It's appearance later would confuse someone unfamiliar with Joyce.
I was to add comments by two critics which would justify my quoting Stephen and Bloom. One is Richard Ellmann.
Please let me finish Quarkny (talk) 17:08, 2 December 2023 (UTC)[reply]
If you are quoting Joyce's literature and then arguing it is own voice, this is seen as original research Wikipedia is a tertiary source that only discusses already vetted opinions. If you are looking for evidence that Joyce remained strongly against all things Catholic, I think a great place to start would be Help My Unbelief : James Joyce and Religion. Geert Lernout directly makes the argument and would be easy to cite. The point would be strong if it were "critics" and not just one person's opinion. Do you have others you know of? I can check around for a few too. Wtfiv (talk) 17:51, 2 December 2023 (UTC)[reply]
Here's another source, you may find useful, it's more informal, as it is a JSTOR blog, "James Joyce, Catholic Writer?" I personally wouldn't use but it as a citation source, but it points to a book review in a peer-reviewed journal called "Joyce's loss of faith" by Jeffrey Hibbert, the review is a balanced look at the Lernout book I mentioned above with a depth that makes it an article in its own right. What might be less satisfying for you though is that the blog and review acknowledge Joyce's rejection but affirm the ambivalent relationship.
It cites a work I cannot access called "Joyce's Misbelief" by Roy Gottfried. I'm not sure it makes the point you want to, as Gottfried's position appears-in Hibbert's reading-to be similar to the Lang's, who you have been using for your citations. According to the article: Joyce is a " 'misbeliever,” a kind of heretic who understands the faith but appropriates and transforms it for his own ends'. This is Lang's position too, and that could be stated in the article. From what I can tell from reading Lang, Lernout, and Hibbert, as well as Hibbert's mention of Gottfried. The strongest statement would be that Joyce rejected the Catholicism he was raised with, Lernout as reviewed by Hibbert, and Hibbert, argue that at minimum Joyce was non-compliant with the tenets of Catholicism and at the extreme, outright rejected them. A brief summary of these in a sentence or two would make the point I'm understanding you to make- which is countering the Catholic critics. (Hibbert's review addresses the Catholic critics head on.) Wtfiv (talk) 19:02, 2 December 2023 (UTC)[reply]
Interestingly, Hibbert makes the point I'm making here. The words about religion that Joyce puts in his characters mouths is not always consistent with Joyce's actual behavior. (IMO, I think relying on Joyce's characters to make claims about Joyce's beliefs because almost every work is insistently and constantly ironic.) Wtfiv (talk) 19:07, 2 December 2023 (UTC)[reply]
In part, that was my mistake. I thought information in the first article missing and "restored" it. I didn't see that you had split the first paragraph into a second. But now that I see it, I do think the first paragraph makes a single argument and shouldn't be broken up quotes from Joyce's fiction. But I also think that the presentation of critics that Joyce completely rejected Catholicism, or critics statement that Joyce's characters do reflect his views of religion- would be appropriate in the paragraph with the "Catholic Critics".
But I do return to my major point. Arguing that comments in the voice of fiction characters who all get ironic treatment themselves is a cited statement of Joyce's rejection of the church. Once more, I'd suggest getting a source that says it directly. Wtfiv (talk) 17:33, 2 December 2023 (UTC)[reply]
I've finished for now. I have three sources for the anti-Catholic view. I could easily rearrange the sequence as per your advice, but please tell me what you think first. If I have to make more changes, I can make them all at once. 2603:7000:9700:8D83:8BE6:FC52:B633:25B9 (talk) 18:00, 3 December 2023 (UTC)[reply]
Sorry, I missed this note before writing the one below. I think we're close to making the point clearly! Wtfiv (talk) 20:52, 3 December 2023 (UTC)[reply]
Quarkney, I've edited, reorganized, and trimmed your recent additions. I also added the references you found and fixed your references to sfn as per WP:CITEVAR. Here are the changes made:
  • The point about Joyce's rejection of Catholicism and the way it was expressed in his writing has moved to beginning of second paragraph to make the point clear that some critics (Ellman and Lernout) argue that Joyce rejects Catholicism.
  • Sentences following provides support for this opinion from evidence. This includes original material moved from the first paragraph. The argument is summary, it does not provide specific examples. These are innumerable and can be found in almost everything Joyce wrote. The examples in earlier edits can be found by readers when they click the convenience links for the citations.
  • All the sources you found have been included, properly formatted, and when possible convenience links added. (Except for the valuable Ellmann newspaper article, which is unfortunately behind a paywall. Fortunately, readers who know how to search it can find it on alternative websites.)
Wtfiv (talk) 18:46, 3 December 2023 (UTC)[reply]
I think your editing has been fair to my side. The Catholics have a higher word count, but then they need it. I'm glad you deleted the reference to Stephen and Molly Bloom. I didn't think that sentence was at all helpful to your cause. In fact, it might have harmed it. Stephen resents being a servant. Molly isn't affirming Catholicism, and you shouldn't be in the position of quoting a character as speaking for Joyce, when you don't want to recognize that Stephen is speaking for him. But I think the Catholic side should have an even higher word count. There should be some evidence from the works themselves. A mention of Aquinas might help, Stephen's theory as "applied Aquinas." In his letters, as I'm sure you know, Joyce talks about his admiration of Aquinas. A few years ago I read what was advertised as an analysis of Ulysses as a "wisdom book." I was skeptical, but the book held my attention. It focuses on Bloom's behavior. He's a good man, an exception in Dublin. It occurs to me that his behavior is in accord with Catholicism's teachings, masturbation aside. Indeed, he may be said to embody Judaeo-Christian ethics. (His father is Jewish. He's converted to Christianity, finally to Catholicism.) Joyce, jocoseriously of course, identifies him as a Christ figure. Bloom may represent what in Catholicism Joyce couldn't help but value, despite his apostasy. Just a thought. But in any event, I think you need to draw on Ulysses to make your case. Quarkny (talk) 18:50, 4 December 2023 (UTC)[reply]
Thanks Quarkny! Believe it or not, Joyce's view of himself as a Catholic or not of particular interest to me. The extent of my interest is how he uses Catholic material in his fiction. In these edits, my concern is maintaining the consistency of style for the featured article, which was reviewed a couple of years back, respecting the previous work done, and ensuring legitimate points get integrated. I very much appreciate you arguing that Joyce's rejection of Catholicism and its expression in his fiction needed more emphasis. And, I think the addition of how Joyce used the Greek rites to rework "The Sisters" is a gem of a find. As to Joyce's Catholicism: Would you believe that "non serviam" material was an artifact of this article going back to 2010, when it was at the front of the article! Working with you made it clear that it was time for the material to go. And I don't think the article loses anything for it.
I don't think we need examples in the text. The focus is on the critical opinion about Joyce's religion If people want examples from lieterature, they can go the sources, I made as many as possible-including the ones you gave- as accessible as possible with a single click going to examples by providing convenience links. I citing the Aquinas material (and many other examples) could just get confusing. If you look at links for the Catholic critics cited, they use Joyce's writing on Aquinas to argue for his Catholicism, but the same material is used by Lang to argue for Joyce's transformation and appropriation of Catholic material. I think just the sentence mention he appropriates Catholic tradition, (which includes Aquinas as well as other issues), keeps it simple without getting further entangled.
I think your discussion of Bloom emphasizes Joyce's irony and the points made in the article about appropriating material for his own ends. In the book you read, the Jewish Bloom is transmuted to a Christ figure (which Lang asserts too) who better represents Judeo-Christian values the Church is suppose to purvey. And with that touch of Joycean blasphemy, Bloom's transmutation does not exclude his pleasure in masturbating. This is quintessential Joyce, he creates controversy amongst the critics with multiple layers of irony. There is a second hand quote of Joyce about Ulysses that was reported by Jacques Benoist-Méchin in Ellmann 1982, p. 520 that illustrates this and the problem of quoting Joyce's fiction: "I've put so many enigmas and puzzles that it [Ulysses] will keep the professors busy for centuries arguing over what I meant." Wtfiv (talk) 20:26, 4 December 2023 (UTC)[reply]
Just to pop in and add: Quarkny, because this article is the biography it's basically thought as the place where an overview is presented in what Wikipedia calls Wikipedia:summary style. Generally what we do for specific examples is to add the that critical analyis to the articles about the individual works - which is where it belongs. I've just noticed your edits to Ezra Pound, another featured article, which should be an overview and can't go into vast specific detail. But that's another problem for another day. For this article I think the edits as made work. We don't count words or provide specific examples - we follow what the sources tell us and as editors try to decide what goes here or what is more appropriate on a different page. Victoria (tk) 22:52, 4 December 2023 (UTC)[reply]

Kablammo, Ceoil, Victoria, or SandyGeorgia, would you have any insights on addressing this issue? — Preceding unsigned comment added by Wtfiv (talkcontribs)

Hi Wtfiv I've been trying to follow the sequence of edits here. I think your last set of edits gets it about right & suggest we leave it at that. Victoria (tk) 20:46, 3 December 2023 (UTC)[reply]
Thank you so much for your reply, Victoria. And thanks too for taking a look. It's a tough balance trying to ensure the integrity of the featured article and the addition of a new, but important, point. Wtfiv (talk) 20:49, 3 December 2023 (UTC)[reply]
No prob! I was having difficulty formulating a reply earlier. Plus there have been lots of edits to do with citations. When I looked this afternoon it seemed about right to me. Definitely a tough balance. Victoria (tk) 21:04, 3 December 2023 (UTC)[reply]

Why the absence of a recording of Joyce's voice on the page?[edit]

It's not super well-known (and doesn't seem to be mentioned on this page), but there is a recording of Joyce reading a section of Aeolus:


Surely an actual recording of Joyce's voice on this page (and reading Ulysses nonetheless!) would be an essential addition to both this page and the Ulysses page.

I'm no copywrite expert but given the record was published in 1924, surely it'd now be in the public domain (if not very close to being in it). Neuroxic (talk) 14:55, 20 February 2024 (UTC)[reply]

I think it'd be a great addition to both articles as long as its not violating copyright law, which I'm unsure of. Wtfiv (talk) 17:27, 20 February 2024 (UTC)[reply]
That link gives Paris as a publication location - is it known whether it was published at that time in the US? Nikkimaria (talk) 05:40, 21 February 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Doesnt look like it. Only 20 pressing were made in 1924; they were paid for by the recorder rather than a publisher, and distributed to friends only.[9] Ceoil (talk) 16:45, 21 February 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Ah - in that case it would be unlikely to be PD at this point unless there's more info suggesting otherwise. Nikkimaria (talk) 00:16, 22 February 2024 (UTC)[reply]
It will pass into PD in 2029. Thanks anyway Neuroxic; if I live for another 5 years will add it. Ceoil (talk) 19:47, 22 February 2024 (UTC)[reply]