The SBL Handbook of Style

The SBL Handbook of Style

Society of Biblical Literature
Copyright Date: 2014
Pages: 368
https://www.jstor.org/stable/j.ctt14bs6ct
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  • Book Info
    The SBL Handbook of Style
    Book Description:

    The definitive source for how to write and publish in the field of biblical studies

    The long-awaited second edition of the essential style manual for writing and publishing in biblical studies and related fields includes key style changes, updated and expanded abbreviation and spelling-sample lists, a list of archaeological site names, material on qur'anic sources, detailed information on citing electronic sources, and expanded guidelines for the transliteration and transcription of seventeen ancient languages. An extensive list of additions and rule changes is available here.

    Features:

    Expanded lists of abbreviations for use in ancient Near Eastern, biblical, and early Christian studiesInformation for transliterating seventeen ancient languagesExhaustive examples for citing print and electronic sources

    eISBN: 978-1-58983-965-6
    Subjects: Language & Literature, Library Science, Religion

Table of Contents

  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-iv)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. v-xi)
  3. PREFACE TO THE SECOND EDITION
    (pp. xii-xiii)
    John F. Kutsko
  4. PREFACE TO THE FIRST EDITION
    (pp. xiv-xiv)
  5. 1 INTRODUCTION
    (pp. 1-1)

    The SBL Handbook of Stylehas been created to help scholars, students, editors, and proofreaders of ancient Near Eastern studies, biblical studies, early Christianity, and rabbinic studies.

    Three principles have informed the selection of material and guided the contents of the handbook. First,The SBL Handbook of Styleshould as much as possible reflect usage and not make new law. Therefore it has not imposed an artificial consistency on the different areas of specialization in a multifaceted field such as biblical studies. If an area of specialization had a relatively standard and stable convention, it was adopted. Consequently, for example,...

  6. 2 RESPONSIBILITIES OF AN AUTHOR
    (pp. 2-8)

    Apart from the obvious task of writing, authors who are preparing a manuscript for publication have other, related responsibilities before and after submitting their work. Developments in publishing technology have introduced new authorial responsibilities, even though the reality is that authors are no more computer wizards, editors, or publishers than editors and publishers are typically specialists in each author’s particular field. For the forseeable future, therefore, authors will continue to benefit from close and respectful working relationships with editors, proofreaders, indexers, and production experts who are, to a greater degree than many people recognize, responsible for attractive books that bring...

  7. 3 RESPONSIBILITIES OF AN EDITOR
    (pp. 9-11)

    Editors and proofreaders strive to ensure that a given book both adheres to a specific style and respects the unique demands of each volume. To achieve both goals, editors and proofreaders rely on “authorities.” The most important authorities are, in descending order:

    Book style sheet (§3.1)

    The SBL Handbook of Style, 2nd ed. (§3.2)

    Chicago Manual of Style, 16th ed. (§3.3)

    Other authorities (§3.4)

    One mark of a well-edited volume is internal coherence. Such coherence begins, of course, with the selection and arrangement of the chapters or essays, but it does not end there. Rather, one should seek to enhance...

  8. 4 GENERAL STYLE
    (pp. 12-54)

    This section, addressed to authors, copy editors, and proofreaders, sets forth standards concerning stylistic issues that commonly cause difficulties in the main text of books.

    Commas should enable fluent reading. That is, they shouldnotbe used where they make for gratuitous lurches in reading; theyshouldbe used where owing to syntactical ambiguity (even such as would be resolved by the end of the sentence) the reader might not otherwise construe the text correctly in one pass. The following discussions of commas indicate those uses of commas that are most problematic. Fuller discussions of the proper use of commas...

  9. 5 TRANSLITERATING AND TRANSCRIBING ANCIENT TEXTS
    (pp. 55-67)

    The choice of how to present an ancient language in a given work will depend on the nature and purpose of the work. For example, a work that seeks to facilitate reading for a general readership may use a general-purpose transliteration style, while a work that includes comparisons of word formation in several Semitic languages will require a more precise transliteration style.

    This section provides instructions for cases in which transliterations of ancient texts are to be used. Although some use “transliteration” to refer to both kinds of representation distinguished below, precisely understood transliteration is the conversion of a text...

  10. 6 NOTES AND BIBLIOGRAPHIES
    (pp. 68-108)

    Authors are responsible for supplying complete, accurate, and stylistically correct notes and bibliographies (see §§2.1.3.7–8). This includes checking carefully to be certain that all the notes correctly match their reference numbers in the body text and that the body text contains no extra or duplicate reference numbers.

    Some publishers, including SBL Press, prefer the traditional documentation style that uses footnotes and bibliographies, but other publishers use endnotes, and for some books author-date citations are appropriate. As the footnote-endnote issue is a production matter, authors normally need not be overconcerned with placement of notes (see §2.1.3.8); more fundamental are decisions...

  11. 7 INDEXES
    (pp. 109-116)

    The author or editor of a volume is usually responsible for creating any indexes to be included. Authors and editors should consult with the publisher regarding the types of indexes to be included, as this will vary depending on the type of book.

    At a minimum, most monographs and many multiauthor volumes will include a subject index. In biblical studies and related fields it is also a desideratum to include an ancient sources index. Some works may benefit from an author index as well.

    The primary requisite of a subject index is usefulness to the reader. Entry headings should be...

  12. 8 ABBREVIATIONS
    (pp. 117-260)

    Authors’ use of abbreviations will vary depending on the material and its intended readers. Abbreviations can be particularly useful in notes, parenthetical materials, tables, lists, and bibliographies, and in the right circumstances SBL Press encourages authors to make the most of them. Where abbreviations are frequent, it is helpful to list the uncommon ones (those that would not be found in a standard dictionary or universally known among the target audience) in the front matter; on the other hand, if technical abbreviations are infrequent, one could make a good case for eliminating them entirely.

    In running text, it is much...

  13. APPENDIX A: HEBREW BIBLE/OLD TESTAMENT CANONS
    (pp. 261-264)
  14. APPENDIX B: ENGLISH/HEBREW/GREEK VERSIFICATION
    (pp. 265-268)
  15. APPENDIX C: TEXTS FROM THE JUDEAN DESERT
    (pp. 269-330)
  16. APPENDIX D: SHEPHERD OF HERMAS
    (pp. 331-332)
  17. INDEX
    (pp. 333-352)