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Thursday, June 22, 2006

Guénon on Wikipedia

Wikipedia seems now to have become the world’s most-used source of information,(1) so it is interesting to note that René Guénon currently features in some 400 Wikipedia articles in 21 different languages.

Predictably, it is the English verison of Wikipedia (which is the largest) that has most references to Guénon. The French and Turkish versions also refer to him a lot. With the exception of Japanese, every major version of Wikipedia(2) mentions him at least once, and usually several times.

Guénon also features in 8 of the smaller Wikipedias, especially Croatian, Hungarian, Romanian, and Russian.(3) I have not been able to find entries for him, however, in Arabic or Chinese, or in a number of other minor versions of Wikipedia.(4) Guénon does appear, however, in three very small versions of Wikipedia: those in Sicilian, Uzbek, and Vietnamese. Guénon’s popularity in Sicily has already been noted. The Uzbek and Vietnamese mentions remain to be explained.

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Notes
(1)
Alexa.com now ranks Wikipedia 16th in its traffic rankings. Wikipedia probably actually ranks higher, since Alexa admits to over-counting Chinese sites. Excluding Chinese sites, Wikipedia ranks 9th. All the eight more popular sites are search engines, networking sites (MySpace) technical sites belonging to Microsoft, or sales sites (Ebay and Amazon).

(2) In addition to English and French, these are: Dutch, German, Italian, Polish, Portuguese, Spanish and Swedish.

(3) The others are: Greek, Estonian, Malay, and Norwegian.

(4) Bulgarian, Czech, Danish, Finnish, Hebrew, Icelandic, Indonesian, Korean, Lithuanian, Persian, Slovak, Slovenian, Serbian, Thai, and Ukrainian. Nor does Guénon feature in Basque, Catalan, Galician, Esperanto, or Neapolitan.

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