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Should individual tale titles in The Canterbury Tales be set in quotation marks?

Yes. Student writers should place the titles of individual tales in quotation marks. This follows from the MLA Handbook’s general guideline for the styling of titles: “A title is placed in quotation marks if the source is part of a larger work” (25): “The Wife of Bath’s Tale” appears in The Canterbury Tales. The only tales . . .

Published 2 January 2019

How do I eliminate back-to-back parentheses in a sentence?

To eliminate back-to-back parentheses in a sentence, you should generally reword:   Original:  The General Franco Institute published the most important Spanish colonial work on Andalusi music, Patrocinio García Barriuso’s La música hispano-musulmana en Marruecos (“Hispano-Muslim Music in Morocco”) (1941). Revised: In 1941, the General Franco Institute published the most important Spanish colonial work on Andalusi music, . . .

Published 31 October 2018

Does MLA style allow the use of slashed terms?

The slash is rarely necessary in formal prose. It mainly appears when two terms are paired as opposites or alternatives and used together as a noun: The writer discussed how fundamental oppositions like good/evil or East/West affect the way cultures view historical events. When two terms paired as opposites precede and modify a noun, use . . .

Published 29 October 2018

When is a comma used before et al. in MLA style?

In MLA style, a comma is generally only used before et al. in the “Author” slot of works-cited-list entries when the author’s first and last names are reversed: Burdick, Anne, et al. Digital_Humanities. MIT P, 2012.  The comma tells your reader that the name Anne is out of normal position and that the abbreviation attaches to . . .

Published 11 September 2018

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