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Quotology (Stages)

3.5 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0803217522
ISBN-10: 0803217528
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Editorial Reviews


“Well named, Quotology contains everything you always wanted to know about quotations, quoters, quotees, quotation books, ‘quoox’ (quotations out of context), and their fascinating history.”—Marjorie Garber, author of Shakespeare and Modern Culture and Quotation Marks
(Marjorie Garber)

“Those who are fascinated by quotations, meaning just about everyone who is interested in culture or history, will want to devour Willis Regier’s Quotology. Regier, more than anyone before him, has illuminated the reasons we quote, the taxonomy of quotation types, and the traditions of the great quote books, and done so with delightful wit and penetrating insight.”—Fred Shapiro, editor of The Yale Book of Quotations
(Fred Shapiro)

"Regier . . . offers a fascinating look at the principles and practices of quotation."—E.L. Battistella, CHOICE
(E.L. Battistella CHOICE)

About the Author

Willis Goth Regier is the director of the University of Illinois Press. He is the author of In Praise of Flattery (Nebraska 2007) and Book of the Sphinx (Nebraska 2004), available in a Bison Books edition.

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Product Details

  • Series: Stages
  • Paperback: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Bison Books (October 1, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0803217528
  • ISBN-13: 978-0803217522
  • Product Dimensions: 5.6 x 0.6 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,862,172 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Academics beware: The content of this book is phenomenal; however, the structure is largely non-existent and its presentation is little more than incessant babble. Most of the prose is in the form of "this person said this, that person said that" sentences that are loosely strung into largely incoherent and purposeless paragraphs. The lack of structure and terrible presentation of this book renders it almost worthless for skimming and referencing: you are forced to plow through this book from start to finish in hopes of finding the information you're looking for. The only saving grace of this book is that key terms and phrases are found in either section headings or in all-capitalization; however, these terms and phrases often go undefined, thereby voiding any value they could have had. Personally, the most value I gained from the book came after highlighting all key terms and phrases, thereby making the book into a taxonomy of quotology. A "taxonomy of quotology" is (roughly) what I expected the book to be in the first place! Alas, it isn't.
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Format: Paperback
When I was thirteen I inadvertently got hooked on quotations without even knowing that's what my obsession was, while reading The Scarlet Letter for a homework assignment and scribbling down the best lines as I read, into a spiral notebook. At the time I had no idea that other people had ever fallen victim to this odd behavior. Now 25 years later I am still an incurable quotation addict, but it was not until recently that I actually learned about the genre. I've had a quarter-century of my own experience collecting and sharing and quoting and misquoting, but I was not aware that anyone had studied so completely the history and scope of the world of quotation. Mr Willis Goth Regier is one such expert, and he shares his knowledge of "quotology" in this fascinating book.

He explains the parts of quotations; types of quotations; the complex struggles and long history of misquotation; plagiarism; quotations as weapons; quoting out of context; wit in quotations; trends and fashion of quotation; self-quotation (guilty as charged!), among many other topics and of course provides numerous well-chosen quotations to illustrate points. There is also information about the various methods used throughout the ages for indicating quotations in print. Did you know that quotation marks did not become widely used until the 18th century?

I was especially interested by the history of quotation collections, including the types of collections (my favorite of the terms being florilegia - "books of flowers" - which are quotation miscellanies); their pioneers, including an interesting section on the famous Mr Bartlett; the burst of quotation publications starting in the mid-1800s; the gradual inclusion of women authors, etc.
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