Question

I am a bit confused on what to do when punctuation is in the title, as shown in the reference below.

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I know you are supposed to capitalize the first letter of the first word after a colon, but I am not sure if the dashes fall in to this category. I would appreciate any clarification! Bloor, A. (2009). The rhythm's gonna get ya'--Background music in primary classrooms and its effect on behaviour and attainment. Emotional & Behavioural Difficulties,14(4), 261-274. doi:10.1080/13632750903303070

Answered By: Linda Kern
Last Updated: Dec 12, 2016     Views: 82

Sometimes it make you just want to find another article! :-)

The punctuation isn't the real issue, it's just a convenient guideline. The real question is whether the second part is part of the title, or is a separate subtitle. Technically, a subtitle is a "secondary portion of the title proper of a work, usually consisting of an explanatory or limiting phrase, following a colon or semicolon and often beginning with ''" or 'an'." http://www.abc-clio.com/ODLIS/searchODLIS.aspx .

That isn't what you have here. The second part of the title is more of a title than the first part.  The first part is technically a catchword title. For your purposes, it means that you treat the whole thing as the title, and capitalize only the first word, "The". There is no need to capitalize "background".

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