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Direct Quotation

About direct quotes


When you use a direct quote, you copy and
reference the exact word/s of the author
into your writing.
A direct quote may be:

One word
A phrase or part of a sentence
A sentence
A group of sentences

Use a Quotation:
o to emphasize a point you've made
o to provide an example
o to show an author's intention
o to show how historical figures spoke or
thought
o to preserve vivid or technical language

What are the different ways to use


quotation in your sentences?
Citation-comma-quotation: St. Paul
declared, It is better to marry than to
burn.
Citation, colon, quotation (this format is
used when the quotation is an example that
illustrates your point). In first Corinthians,
St. Paul commented on lust: It is better
to marry than to burn.

MAKING A
QUOTE
SANDWICH

How do you
make a
sandwich?

There are four elements to the


sandwich:
1. Introduction of the quotation that responds to your
claim (This is the top layer of bread.)
2. The lead-in to the quotation (e.g. "according to,"
"Kincaid writes," etc.) (This is the peanut butter.)
3. The quotation itself (This is the jelly.)
4. Interpretation or explanation of the quotation in
the context of your argument (This is the bottom
layer of bread.)

explanatio
n

lead-in

Introductio
n

quotation

Some basic formulae for


citations
X states, _____
According to X, _____
In her book, _____, X maintains that _____
X agrees when she writes, _____
X disagrees when he writes, _____

Some basic formulae for


explaining
In other words, X believes _____.
X is insisting that_____.
Xs point is that_____.
In short, _____.

signal phrases to introduce


your quotes
Signal Phrases
According to..
In her article...
In the opinion of (authors name)...
(Authors name) suggests that...
(Authors name) argues that...
(Authors name) + (a reporting verb from the right)

Reporting verbs to introduce


your quotes
Acknowledges

Comments

Adds

Compares

Admits
Agrees
Argues

Confirms
Declares

Asserts

Denies

Believes

Disputes

Claims

Emphasizes

Reporting verbs to introduce


your quotes
Reasons
Endorses

Refutes

Grants

Rejects

Illustrates
Implies
Insists

Reports
Responds

Notes

Suggests

Observes

Thinks

Points out

Writes

THREE STEP
QUOTATION
STRATEGY

TOP SLICE OF BREAD:


Another of James interesting positions is his
argument that a non-military conscription can
improve our society by improving the character
of the young people who serve in it.

INSIDE THE SANDWICH:


Another of James interesting positions is his argument
that a non-military conscription can improve our society by
improving the character of the young people who serve in
it. He claims that we should get toughness without
callousness, authority with as little criminal cruelty
as possible, and painful work done cheerily because
the duty is temporary, and threatens not, as now, to
degrade the whole remainder of one's life(21).

SECOND SLICE OF
BREAD:
Another of James interesting positions is his argument
that a non-military conscription can improve our society
by improving the character of the young people who
serve in it. He claims that we should get toughness
without callousness, authority with as little criminal
cruelty as possible, and painful work done cheerily
because the duty is temporary, and threatens not, as
now, to degrade the whole remainder of one's life(21). I
agree with James that requiring everyone to serve
in a non-military army could cause these positive
characteristics to become much more
commonplace in our country, which in turn would

The Quote Sandwich


In discussing the role of movies in shaping the American
public's view of the Vietnam War, H. Bruce Franklin makes this
telling statement: "The manipulation of familiar images [about
the war]... was blatant, though most critics at the time
seemed oblivious to it." The manipulation of these images
created an image in the minds of most Americans, who now
pictured helicopters, the music of Wagner and the Doors, and
Russian roulette as substitutes for the reality of the war. The
media created a different Vietnam in the minds of Americans.

Judging by stereotypes is not entirely a bad


thing. It can save us time and energy. One
prolific writer and editor says that, Life would
be a wearing process if we had to start from
scratch with each and every human
contact(Vachon 34). Although stereotyping can
be a dangerous practice, it should be
appreciated also as a shortcut.

Short Quotations:
use quotation marks
make sentences smoothly flow from your words to
those quoted, as in these examples that follow MLA
format:

As Coach Clark explained, "We lost the game because we were


overconfident and failed to take the other team's defense seriously
enough" (32).
The coach notes that "most of the guys on State's team have much
less experience than our players, but they certainly have talent
and a desire to win" (33).

Note how the writer sets up the quotations with


"explained" and "notes that."

Example
According to Princeton Writing Centre (2009,
para. 7), direct quotes should only be used
provide support for academic argument for a
"compelling" (one word) reason and the choice
to quote may be because "you want your
readers to be able to see, in full, what
someone else has said" (16 words) before you
go on to analyze the statement.

Long direct quotes


Long quotes are more than 40 words OR
three typed lines. Follow these
conventions:

leave no space above and below the long quote


make the text size the same as the essay text size
indent approximately one centimetre to the right
do NOT use quotation marks

Example
Students often misunderstand the role of quotations in writing
and overdo the strategy:
Students include four quotations where one would do. This
can give the impression that you don't have enough to say
and are using quotations to take up space [a common
strategy for some students]. Also, the excessive use of quotes
... may be taken to indicate that you don't understand the
position well enough to explain it in your own words.
(Dartmouth, 2008, para. 11) (62 words)
Moreover, there are a number of technical rules that students
need to learn to use quotations correctly in their writing.

Conventions for modifying


direct quotes
Making a change
Leaving out some words
(because you may not need
all of the words in the middle
of the quote)
Changing the capitalization of
a letter
Adding words to the quote
(without changing the
meaning)

Correct convention
Use an ellipsis signal (three
dots ... ). Leave a space either
side of the 3 dots
Use square brackets [ ]
around the letter
Use square brackets [ ]
around the added words

In general, however, use a blank space,


three points, then another space when
you omit material in the middle of a
sentence, and four when skipping
between sentences.
If you break at the end of a sentence and
then move to another, include the final
punctuation mark from the first sentence.

Example
"Rome had several 'mad emperors.' [Nero]
was the maddest of them all" (Smith 32).
ORIGINAL - "He was the maddest of them all,
Quotations within quotations - we change from
double to single quotation marks ('mad
emperors)

"Rome had several mad emperors. [Nero] was


the maddest of them all. . . . Legend has it . . .
he played his harp while the city went up in
flames" (Smith 32)
"What, then, was the origin of the Nero's
legendary concert? . . . Historians have provided
several interpretations of the genesis of this
event" (Smith 33).

Proofread:
Check for content:
Are all the parts of the quote sandwich there?
Is your analysis thoughtful and insightful?

Check for proper grammar, spelling, and word choice.


Write in the present tense. (Elisha feels not Elisha felt)
Check for the rules of formal writing:
No contractions (theyre, shes, its, couldnt, wasnt, etc)
No personal pronouns (I, we, me, you, etc.)

Formal tone (no slang, clichs, or usage of informal phrases)

EVALUATION OF EFFECTIVE
QUOTING
Rate your partners use of quoted evidence on a scale of 1- 5
according to the following criteria.
Does the author establish solid context and introduction for the
quote? (i.e. does the author incorporate the quote well enough to
make sure it does not seem dropped from nowhere?
Does the paper smoothly transition between the two voices (the
voice of the author of the paper and the voice of the quoted
author)?
Do you understand why he or she chose the quote? Does the writer
take the time to explain the relation between the quote and his or
her own argument or does the reader have to figure out how the
quote is related?

EVALUATION OF EFFECTIVE
QUOTING
Do you feel satisfied with the level of analysis AFTER the quote?
Is there as much analysis as there is quoting? Or, is the quote
followed up with a mere like she said remark? The paper writer should be doing as much analytic work as the quoted
author?
Is each quote connected directly to either the point of the
paragraph (check topic sentence) or the thesis of the paper?

--M. Harutunian, College of the Canyons


Courtesy the Odegaard Writing & Research Center http://
www.depts.washington.edu/owrc Adapted from UW Expository Writing
Program handout. Quotation Sandwich image courtesy Edward Chang.
Harutunian, M. Making a Quote Sandwich. College of the Canyons, 4 Aug.
1998. 20 Jan. 2009.
Including Evidence in Essays. College of the Canyons, 4 Aug. 1999. 20 Jan.
2009.
Using Important Material from Sources. 9 Sept. 1997. 20 Jan. 2009.