Essay Title Quotes Or Underline

Titles: Underline, Italics, or Quotations?
(printable version here)

When writing about other works, it's hard to decide when to underline (or place in italics) a title and when to place it in double quotations. Note that some publications have a "house style" that must be followed. When in doubt, however, these guidelines from the Modern Language Association may help:

For titles of written or musical works that are published within other works use double quotations; underline or italicize names of works published by themselves:

ex. I just read the short story "Looking for Jake" in China Miéville's anthology of the same name, Looking for Jake.

ex. Beckett's play Waiting for Godot will be performed next season.

ex. Devo's second album, Duty Now for the Future, has one of my favorite songs, "Swelling Itching Brain."

ex. Yes, I went to a science-fiction convention. I really enjoy the original Star Trek TV series, especially the episode "Return of the Archons," and the first three Star Wars films, especially The Empire Strikes Back, okay?

ex. I read the story "All about the Bronx" in the city section of today's New York Times.

ex. I have subscribed to my favorite magazine, The Atlantic, for many years.

For names of artwork, always use italics or underlining:

ex. We have a copy of Edward Hopper's painting Nighthawks in the Writing Center lobby. I always think about it when I'm listening to Tom Wait's CD Nighthawks at the Diner.

For the names of famous aircraft, ships, and spacecraft, always use italics or underlining:

ex. I built scale models of the USS Nimitz and the space shuttle Discovery last year.

Sacred texts:

ex. The Bible, Book of Exodus, or Qu'ran do not get underlined in the text of a paper. A specific edition would, however, be underlined in a works-cited list. Their titles are capitalized.

Back to 'Sentence Structure and Mechanics', 'Punctuation', or 'Using Sources'
Writer's Web | Writing Center | Make an Appointment | Library
Copyright Info

1.4: Italics and Underlining

This resource was written by Jaclyn M. Wells.
Last edited by Elizabeth Angeli, Allen Brizee on April 3, 2013 .

Summary:

This resource deals with italics and underlining.

Punctuation, Continued

Italics and Underlining

Italics and underlining generally serve similar purposes. However, the context for their use is different. When handwriting a document--or in other situations where italics aren't an option--use underlining. When you are word processing a document on a computer, use italics. The important thing is to stay consistent in how you use italics and underlining.

Italicize the titles of magazines, books, newspapers, academic journals, films, television shows, long poems, plays, operas, musical albums, works of art, websites.

  • I read a really interesting article in Newsweek while I was waiting at the doctor’s office.
  • My cousin is reading The Adventures of Tom Sawyer for two different classes.
  • I have every album from Dave Matthews Band, except for Crash.

Quotation Marks and Italics/Underlining Exercise

In the following sentences put in quotation marks wherever they are needed, and underline words where italics are needed.

1. Mary is trying hard in school this semester, her father said.
2. No, the taxi driver said curtly, I cannot get you to the airport in fifteen minutes.
3. I believe, Jack remarked, that the best time of year to visit Europe is in the spring. At least that's what I read in a book entitled Guide to Europe.
4. My French professor told me that my accent is abominable.
5. She asked, Is Time a magazine you read regularly?
6. Flannery O'Connor probably got the title of one of her stories from the words of the old popular song, A Good Man Is Hard to Find.
7. When did Roosevelt say, We have nothing to fear but fear itself?
8. It seems to me that hip and cool are words that are going out of style.
9. Yesterday, John said, This afternoon I'll bring back your book Conflict in the Middle East; however, he did not return it.
10. Can you believe, Dot asked me, that it has been almost five years since we've seen each other?
11. A Perfect Day for Bananafish is, I believe, J. D. Salinger's best short story.
12. Certainly, Mr. Martin said, I shall explain the whole situation to him. I know that he will understand.

Click here for exercise answers.

Punctuation Exercise

Put in semicolons, colons, dashes, quotation marks, Italics (use an underline), and parentheses where ever they are needed in the following sentences.

1. The men in question Harold Keene, Jim Peterson, and Gerald Greene deserve awards.
2. Several countries participated in the airlift Italy, Belgium, France, and Luxembourg.
3. Only one course was open to us surrender, said the ex-major, and we did.
4. Judge Carswell later to be nominated for the Supreme Court had ruled against civil rights.
5. In last week's New Yorker, one of my favorite magazines, I enjoyed reading Leland's article How Not to Go Camping.
6. Yes, Jim said, I'll be home by ten.
7. There was only one thing to do study till dawn.
8. Montaigne wrote the following A wise man never loses anything, if he has himself.
9. The following are the primary colors red, blue, and yellow.
10. Arriving on the 8 10 plane were Liz Brooks, my old roommate her husband and Tim, their son.
11. When the teacher commented that her spelling was poor, Lynn replied All the members of my family are poor spellers. Why not me?
12. He used the phrase you know so often that I finally said No, I don't know.
13. The automobile dealer handled three makes of cars Volkswagens, Porsches, and Mercedes Benz.
14. Though Phil said he would arrive on the 9 19 flight, he came instead on the 10 36 flight.
15. Whoever thought said Helen that Jack would be elected class president?
16. In baseball a show boat is a man who shows off.
17. The minister quoted Isaiah 5 21 in last Sunday's sermon.
18. There was a very interesting article entitled The New Rage for Folk Singing in last Sunday's New York Times newspaper.
19. Whoever is elected secretary of the club Ashley, or Chandra, or Aisha must be prepared to do a great deal of work, said Jumita, the previous secretary.
20. Darwin's On the Origin of Species 1859 caused a great controversy when it appeared.

Click here for exercise answers.

0 comments

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *