Handling Quotations



11 May 2014

Most writers love quotations. They capture the "feel" of a document. They express the thoughts of those we're studying. They can provide important perspective, as provided by other writers. They also introduce a host of questions and even more opportunities for ethical and legal transgressions—starting with these five:

  • When do we need to acknowledge a source?
  • When quoting, how much of a passage can we reproduce?
  • When should we paraphrase and when should we quote?
  • How do we present quotations within quotations?
  • How do we punctuate quotations?

James P. Davis's Rowman & Littlefield Guide to Writing with Sources, 4th ed. (New York, Toronto, Plymouth, and elsewhere: Rowman & Littlefield, 2011), packs virtually everything we need to know about handling quotations into sixty-six wee pages that deserve a quarter-inch of space on every researcher's bookshelf.