ENG 1101: Incorporating quotations

why use outside materials?

  • get to know them better
  • think more deeply about our own work
  • quotation can help you explain your point better
  • bring in someone else’s point of view, whether they agree or disagree
  • gives reader more depth about the subject
  • shows you did more work, did your research
  • gives the author authority
  • important to do it properly
  • too much might diminish author’s authority
  • too much can be confusing
  • if you don’t do anything with the material, it’s a waste
  • keep in mind your goal–to make a claim, not to dump data into a file.
  • gives a sense of the voice of the source

how do we incorporate outside materials?

  • quotation fits into the sentence
  • quotation fits into the sentence with the addition of a colon (to show this is an example; to show multiple examples)
  • longer quotation (more than 4 lines): block format: according to MLA style, we indent the block 1″ on the left, 0″ on the right, no italics
  • (consider how long is too long for quotations–do you really need a block quotation for this project?)
  • no dropped quotations! Quotations can’t be their own sentence! incorporate it into another sentence, using joining words or punctuation.
  • we might use just one word or short phrase to incorporate the source author’s vocabulary, concepts, or terms
  • quotations can help build a narrative
  • Shorten long quotations: use an ellipsis. The quotation still needs to make sense grammatically. “Butchie, guess what? I had a dream last night about us having a baby…I guess the dream belonged to you, too”
  • Quotation inside quotation: use single quotation marks inside, double outside. Exception: in block format, start with double for inside quotation.
  • Use parenthetical citations to indicate where the quotation comes from. Use author’s last name and page (if available), or just author’s name, or just title if no author is given. Include it before the punctuation at the end of the sentence but after the quotation marks. “Like this” (Rosen). For more examples, read this from the Purdue University Online Writing Lab (OWL)
  • Use a Works Cited list to acknowledge all of the sources you used. For the purposes of Project #2, you can copy from our Readings list.


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