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Use quotation marks

Use quotation marks to identify text that is quoted verbatim.

Here is a sample paragraph with text placed inside quotation marks.

In his article on willed beliefs, Stephen Evans remarks that a believer "might be convinced that the paradoxical nature of the god-man is a reality by a first-person encounter with the god-man" (183). According to Evans, this belief results from the encounter with reality, not an act of will. I am in agreement with Evans on this point. In such a case, the belief is founded on experience.

If the passage being quoted is lengthy, omit the quotation marks and indent the lines to form a block quotation. Placing the quoted passage in a block quotation sets it off, making it easier for the reader to see that a significant portion of text is a quotation.

It appears that it is the position of prescriptive volitionalism that Pojman finds particularly perplexing. Rejection of the value of this position is a major impetus behind the writing of his book, as evidenced by certain remarks made by Pojman in the introduction to Religious Belief and the Will:

This work arose from two experiences in my life. As a child I found myself doubting religious statements, and being told that there was something disloyal or apostate about such attitudes. I often found it impossible to make leaps of faith into orthodoxy, as I was supposed to do.

The second experience that led to working out these ideas was studying the work of Soren Kierkegaard, the Danish Christian Existentialist. Kierkegaard, as the reader will see, was a consummate volitionalist, apparently believing that every belief was a product of the will in some way. It was trying to come to grips with his thought in graduate school that convinced me there was something wrong with, at least, some types of volitionalism. (xii)

We can sympathize with Pojman here, as he rebels against the notion that he is somehow morally in the wrong if he does not produce faith at will. But is this Kierkegaard's position? Does Kierkegaard maintain that we can and ought to will belief? Is the "leap of faith" constituted by a decision to believe in God - despite lack of evidence, or even evidence to the contrary?

In these examples, following the Modern Language Association (MLA) Style Guide, a parenthetical citation follows the quote. The parenthetical citations are fully referenced at the end of the paper in a list of sources:

Works Cited

Evans, C. Stephen. "Does Kierkegaard Think Beliefs can be Directly Willed?" International Journal for Philosophy of Religion 26 (1989): 173-84.

Pojman, Louis P. Religious Belief and the Will. London: Routledge, 1986.

Taking notes and citing sources discusses alternative citation styles.

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