Physics Department, California State University,

2345 East San Ramon Ave. M/S MH 37

Fresno, CA 93740-8031, USA

E-mail: dougs@csufresno.edu

**A generalized gauge principle with gauge fields of
various ranks**

**Abstract:**

The standard procedure for making a global phase symmetry local involves
the introduction of a rank 1, vector field in the definition of the covariant
derivative. It is shown that there exists a generalization of the gauging
of a phase symmetry using fields of various ranks in the definition of
the covariant derivative. Thus the
standard gauge procedure appears as just one (special) possibility
for making symmetries local. Some properties and possible uses of these
alternative gauge theories will be given.