Blending Quotations

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Blending Quotations
Rules and Recommendations
Purpose
• Quotes are used as evidence to support ideas in
your writing.
• NEVER USE A QUOTE ALONE without an
explanation and interpretation!
• Always make sure your quote and
explanation directly support your thesis!
Setting Up Quotes
• Don’t simply drop quotes into your paper; set
them up with a TCS (Transition, Context,
Speaker).
• INCORRECT: “I have done the state some
service and they know’t” (5.2.337).
• CORRECT:
However, before stabbing
himself, Othello reminds his listeners, “I have
done the state some service and they know’t”
(5.2.337).
Smooth Blending
• You may reproduce complete sentences, OR you
may just quote a few words or phrases and make
them part of your sentence.
• NEVER USE:
▫ THIS QUOTE MEANS OR Fitzgerald said
this because…
• Pick out key words in your explanation to help
with your interpretation.
Examples
• 1. “All her avarice was awakened at the mention
of hidden gold.”
• 2. “…and he was not a man to stick at trifles
where money was in view”
• Mrs. Walker’s “avarice was awakened” when
anyone hinted at her gaining “hidden gold.”
• Tom Walker’s greed was evident in the fact that
he would not “stick at trifles” when money was
involved.
Quotes 3 Lines or Less
• Before stabbing himself, Othello reminds his
listeners, “I have done the state some
service and they know’t.” He speaks of
himself as “one that loved not wisely but
too well” and compares himself to “the base
Indian” who “threw a pearl away / Richer
than all his tribe” (5.2.337-47).
Quotes 4 Lines or More
 Indent two tabs (10 spaces)
 Don’t use quotation marks
 Place parenthetical documentation outside end
punctuation mark
In the final scene, convinced that Desdemona is entirely
innocent and having decided to kill himself, Othello says
to his auditors:
I pray you, in your letters,
When you shall these unlucky deeds relate,
Speak of me as I am, nothing extenuate,
Nor set down aught in malice. (5.2.339-42)
Correcting Problems
• Be sure to incorporate your quote into a
complete, coherent sentence.
• INCORRECT: Othello says, “One that loved
not wisely but too well” (5.2.343).
▫ (INCOMPLETE SENTENCE)
• CORRECT:
Othello speaks of himself as “one
that loved not wisely but too well” (5.2.343).
Correcting Problems
• Check for pronoun-antecedent agreement.
• INCORRECT:
Othello asks his auditors to “speak
of me as I am” (5.2.341).
▫ (The pronouns “me” and “I” do not agree in person with
their antecedent.)
• CORRECT:
Othello bids his auditors,
Speak of me as I am, nothing extenuate,
Nor set down aught in malice. Then must you
speak
Of one that loved not wisely but too well.
(5.2.341-43)
Correcting Problems
• Everything within quotation marks must be
directly quoted from the text.
• INCORRECT: Though Iago bids his wife to
“hold her peace,” Emilia declares, “I will speak
as liberally as the north wind” (5.2.218-19).
▫ (The words within your quotation marks must be
quoted exactly from the original.)
• ORIGINAL:
▫ IAGO:
Come, hold your peace.
Correcting Problems
• CORRECT:
Though Iago bids his wife to “hold
[her] peace,” Emilia declares, “I will speak as
liberal[ly] as the north [wind]” (5.2.218-19).
▫ (It is permissible to insert or substitute words in a
quotation if you enclose them within brackets.
However, avoid excessive use of brackets. Often
paraphrase will serve as well if not better than
quotation, as in the case below.)
• BETTER: Though Iago bids his wife to hold her
peace, Emilia declares that she will speak as liberally
as the north wind (5.2.218-19).
Correcting Problems
• When adjusting for pronoun-antecedent
agreement, use brackets.
• INCORRECT:
Iago bids his wife to “hold
your [her] peace” (5.2.218-19).
▫ (Your sentences, including your bracketed words,
must read as if there were no brackets.)
• CORRECT:
Iago bids his wife to “hold [her]
peace” (5.2.218-19).
Correcting Problems
• Distinguish between direct and indirect
quotations.
• INCORRECT:
Othello says that “I have done
the state some service” (5.2.338).
▫ (Incorrect mixture of direct and indirect
quotation.)
• CORRECT:
Othello says, “I have done the
state some service” (5.2.338).
Correcting Problems
• Check for subject-verb agreement.
• INCORRECT:
Othello says that he “have
done the state some service” (5.2.338).
▫ (Subject and verb of subordinate clause do not
agree.)
• CORRECT:
Othello says that he has “done
the state some service” (5.2.338).
Correcting Problems
• Remove or clarify vague pronouns.
• INCORRECT:
In the final speech of the play,
Lodovico says, “Look on the tragic loading of this
bed: / This is thy work” (5.2.362-63).
▫ (Whose work?)
• CORRECT:
In the final speech of the play,
Lodovico says to Iago, “Look on the tragic loading of
this bed: / This is thy work” (5.2.362-63).
Quotations within Quotations
• Use single quotation marks for quotations
within quotations.
▫ In her dying speech, Emilia asks her dead
mistress, “Hark, canst thou hear me? I will play
the swan, / And die in music. ‘Willow, willow,
willow’” (5.2.246-47).
Comma Placement
 Place commas and periods inside quotation marks.
 Place question marks and exclamation marks inside if they
belong to the quoted sentence, outside if they belong to your
sentence.
• “I am not valiant neither,” says Othello (5.2.242).
• Othello says, “I am not valiant neither” (5.2.242).
• “Who can control his fate?” cries Othello (5.2.264).
• Does Shakespeare endorse Othello’s implication that
no one “can control his fate”? (5.2.264).
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