Why, oh why is it so difficult (if not impossible) to get students to use Chicago-style citations properly in history essays? In evidence-intensive disciplines like mine, footnotes or endnotes (and no “works cited” page!) are the only kind of citations that make sense. And yet, every semester, more than 60% of my students ignore the posted requirement that they use Chicago-style citations.
I assume this is because APA/MLA-style citations (parentheses with page number/s and a “works cited” page) are required in more disciplines. And believe me, I’m grateful that my students (however mistakenly) use some kind of evidence and reasonably consistent citations in their papers. But for historians, who (pardon my disciplinary pride here) should use more than one f^(king text or source per citation, it’s completely idiotic, not to mention disruptive of the flow of the paper and just goddamned ugly. (Just my opinion!)
Christ on a cracker, people: it’s not that hard to figure out, not when the Chicago people put a lovely and easy-to-use “Quick Guide” online and free to all! I’m thinking of showing this clip from The Untouchables to my students about “the Chicago way.”
As another famous 80s movie put it: “Learn it. Know it. Live it.” (And enjoy that glimpse of Anthony Edwards with hair!)