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All footnotes!

My new book, Legal Foundations of a Free Society (Houston, Texas: Papinian Press, 2023), is festooned with footnotes. One reason for this is I’m used to the style and requirements of law reviews and law journals. Every scholarly discipline has its citation format. I, for one, despise in-line citations {like: (Block 2017a)}, and I also despite endnotes. I prefer a modified version of Chicago-style, and in footnote form, although many people hate footnotes, as I noted previously:

I’ve always liked the following comments by Bryan Garner, in The Elements of Legal Style (page 93). Garner notes that although footnotes can usefully refer you to other references, “you can hardly ignore, at the foot of every page, the notes that ‘run along, like little angry dogs barking at the text.’ These days, the notes are more likely Great Danes than chihuahuas.”1

In any case, my new book is littered with them. Some may hate them, but not everyone, apparently. From one reader:

In case you had any concerns about all the footnotes and Appendices, I for one am a fan. I read each one that has supplemental commentary. LFFS trivia: the first page of Part 1 has no footnotes. It’s not till page 79 we find another page absent footnotes. Love the meat on the bone!


  1. Quoting S.M. Crothers, “That History Should Be Readable,” in The Gentle Reader 172 (1903; repr. 1972). To Footnote or Not To Footnote. []
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