Style Guidelines

Rutgers Art Review uses The Chicago Manual of Style (CMS), 16th or newer edition, with modifications as noted below. Authors may use another standard style guide for the initial submission, so long as formatting and usage are consistent, but all manuscripts must conform to the guidelines of the CMS and RAR style sheet when the first revision is submitted.


A. Numbers and Dates


The numbers one through ninety-nine should be spelled out in the text, except in the case of dates, page numbers, and parts of books: “one chapter deals with” vs. “chapter 1 deals with.” Roman numerals should be converted to Arabic numbers, except for personal titles and references to original page numbers.


As an aid to the reader, please provide parenthetical life dates for historical figures, as well as publication dates for works discussed in the main text.


Write inclusive page numbers as follows: 66-67; 100-09; 115-508. Write dates according to the American style: January 1, 1900. Spell out numbers that identify centuries and hyphenate the century name when using it as an adjective (sixteenth-century art). Capitalize Italian century names (Cinquecento). Write inclusive dates as follows: 1560-74. For circa, use the abbreviation “ca.”


B. Italics


Titles of books, periodicals and works of art should be italicized. However, if the original title is followed by an English translation provided by the author or the editor (as opposed to a reference to a published translation of the work) the translated title should be included in brackets, not italicized and capitalized in sentence style. For example:


Zeitschrift für Ethnologie [Journal for Ethnology],
not Zeitschrift für Ethnologie (Journal for Ethnology)


Italics are also used for foreign words and phrases not directly quoted and for English words when they are discussed as words. Italics are not used for building names, exhibition titles, names of foreign institutions, foreign place names, foreign proper names, or direct quotations from foreign languages.


C. Quotations (General)


Commas and periods always go before the closing quotation marks. Unless they belong to the quoted matter, exclamation points and question marks follow the closing quotation marks. When using quoted material it is permissible to change a letter from upper- to lowercase when the quotation is syntactically integrated into the author’s sentence.


Short quotations “are placed between quotation marks in the text.” Lines of poetry quoted within the main text require slashes (/) to indicate line divisions and double slashes (//) to indicate stanza divisions. More than three typed lines of prose or three lines of verse should be set off in a block quote. As needed, provide a succinct parenthetical citation of the source, the page, or line numbers quoted. For example:


Midway on our life’s journey, I found myself
In dark woods, the right road lost. To tell
About those woods is hard – so tangled and rough
And savage that thinking of it now, I feel
The old fear stirring: death is hardly more bitter. (1, 1-5)


Brackets in quoted material indicate the author’s interpolation. A regular ellipsis is formed by three dots, each separated by a single space [. . .] and is used to indicate words omitted from a sentence. Four spaced dots [. . . .] are used to indicate a deletion between sentences.


Quotations must be absolutely accurate and carefully transcribed. Authors should confirm the accuracy of all quoted material before submitting the final revision of the manuscript.


D. Quotations from Foreign Languages


Foreign-language quotations in both the main text and the notes should be translated into English. When the translated quotation is included in the main text of the article, the original text should be included in a note. If you are responsible for translations of quoted material, this information should be included as part of the note for the first translation, e.g. “Unless otherwise indicated, translations are those of the author,” or words to that effect. If the translation is not yours, cite your source.


E. Citations


Acknowledgments should be included in the initial note, indicated by an asterisk after the article’s title. Subsequent notes should be numbered and submitted as endnotes, not footnotes.


All references to publications and the like should appear in full (including place of publication and publisher) only once within the notes. Subsequent references should use a short form: surname of author, short title, and page reference. Consult the CMS 17 for details.


Both “recto” and “verso” are used when printed works and manuscripts are so numbered; for example, 18v; 18r-v; 18r-19v; or, fol. 18v, etc.


Do not use: “op. cit.” or “loc. cit.”


In cases where there are no page numbers, please note n.p.


F. Captions


The guidelines provided here should be followed whenever possible, but they cannot serve as definitive models of what all captions must contain. RAR strives to maintain consistency in caption style, while allowing for some latitude. We include full caption information, whenever available and appropriate, in this order:


  • figure number
  • artist
  • title
  • date
  • media
  • dimensions in inches (height x width x depth) followed by dimensions in centimeters in parentheses
  • collection
  • city of collection
  • other collection information such as “gift of . . . ,” accession number, etc.
  • copyright and/or credit-line information regarding the photograph and/or the artwork (all in parentheses)


Artist, title, date, media, and dimensions are separated by commas, and these elements are followed by a period. Collection and city follow, separated by a comma. After this, in parentheses, comes all copyright information and credit lines. For example:


Fig 1. Sandro Botticelli, Primavera, ca. 1482, tempera on panel, 80 x 124 in. (203 x 315 cm). Galleria degli Uffizi, Florence. Photograph provided by Scala / Art Resource, NY.


G. Bibliography


A complete bibliography must be included with all submissions. The bibliography should be organized alphabetically in a single list to include all printed works and manuscripts cited in the article. Authors should consult CMS 16.1-29 for formatting requirements.


Clarify identical American place names by using U.S. postal style abbreviations for states: Durham, NC or Durham, NH. Clarify identical European/American place names: Cambridge, England or Cambridge, MA. Give foreign place names in English: Venice, not Venezia.


H. Other Issues of Grammar, Formatting and Punctuation


Spelling should be in American English.


Sentences should be separated from one another by a single space, not two.


Too often used as a crutch in weak prose, dashes and colons should be employed with discretion. A colon introduces an element or a series of elements illustrating or amplifying what has preceded the colon. When they are used, dashes normally appear in pairs in order to set off something that breaks from the grammatical structure and/or logic of a sentence. Authors should use em dashes, that is, dashes that are two hyphens in length [—]. For example:


For instance, Stefan Germer notes about the Severed Heads: “That the mouths and eyes are open is ‘uncanny,’ so that the heads seem to speak to us, to stare. These heads are thus possibly—even though apparently separated from their bodies—not dead but rather still living.”


Avoid contractions and colloquial expressions.