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Research in African Literatures 30.4 (1999) 239-240

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Guidelines for Submissions

The editor invites submission of article-length manuscripts (not exceeding 35 pages in length). Manuscripts may be submitted in English, French, or other languages, but they will generally be published in English. Please send four copies to:

Abiola Irele, Editor
Research in African Literatures
The Ohio State University
PO Box 3789
Columbus, Ohio 43210-0789

We regret that we cannot return manuscripts unless a self-addressed return envelope with return postage is included with the submission.

RAL follows the MLA Style Manual (2nd ed.). Chapters 6 and 7 deal with documentation and bibliographic information. Please note that articles that do not conform to our house style may be returned to the author before being considered for publication.

  1. Articles should be printed on only one side of the paper and should be formatted for 8 1/2 x 11" paper even if you use European-size paper.
  2. Double-space everything, including the title, the article itself, all quotations, notes, and the list of works cited. Typescript must be in dark, standard-sized print, with the same type face and size used throughout. Note that underlines become italics.
  3. Do not center or fully justify your text—all text should be left-justified. Paragraph indentations should be tabbed at five spaces. Do not enter carriage returns within paragraphs, especially for indented quotations, where you should set new margins.
  4. RAL does not print subtitles or section titles within essays.
  5. Prepare in separate files and print on separate sheets all endnotes (if used) and the list of works cited. Note numbers should be prepared in superscript and normally occur at the end of a sentence, not following an author's name. Do not use word processor features that embed notes as footnotes or endnotes. All diagrams and graphic materials are the responsibility of the author and must be submitted in camera-ready copy as well as in electronic files.
  6. Use American spellings and punctuation except when quoting from a source that has used British style. All punctuation except colons and semicolons is placed inside quotation marks. Single quotes are used only for quotes within quotes; otherwise, double quotation marks are to be used.
  7. Provide translations (your own—or the standard, if there is a printed translation available) of all material in languages other than English. The translations should be incorporated into the text, following the foreign term or foreign selection.
  8. In order to facilitate blind review, do not print your name or affiliation on the article itself, but provide a separate sheet with that information. [End Page 239]
  9. Please pay particular attention to the following matters of punctuation:
    Apostrophes: All singular proper nouns, including the names of persons and places, form their possessives in the same manner (Mars's wrath, Camus's novel, Kansas's weather, Dickens's popularity; but the Dickenses' economic woes). See section 2.2.2.
    Colons: Skip one space only, not two. In separating a title and subtitle of a book, use a colon.
    Periods: Skip one space only (not two) after all periods, semicolons, and commas.
    Commas: Always use a comma before all coordinating conjunctions in a series of three or more items and always after "i.e." and "e.g."
    Hyphens: Do not use spaces before or after hyphens.
    Em-dashes: Prepare on disk as two hyphens with no space before or after hyphens ("natural—instead of chosen—alliances"). Typesetters will convert the hyphens to em-dashes ("natural—instead of chosen—alliances").
  10. When you quote from or refer to a text, do not, as a rule, use endnotes, but follow the MLA Style Manual directions for in-text, parenthetical documentation. Please note that we do not use an author-date reference system and that specific pages must be given for all quotes. A complete range of pages must be provided for all articles or book chapters listed in the works cited. All works cited in the body of the essay and in endnotes must appear, with full bibliographic details, in the list of works cited. Endnotes should only be used to provide explanatory materials...


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pp. 239-240
Launched on MUSE
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