For Contributors

The Marginalia Review of Books is an international, open access review of literature along the nexus of history, theology, and religion. MRB examines, critiques, and illuminates the traditions, institutions, discourses, and practices of religions and their believers. We aim to connect the academic and public worlds by providing an intellectually rich and broadly accessible conversation that does not merely summarize previous work but contributes new ideas.

If you submit a piece to MRB for consideration, you must let us know if you are submitting simultaneously to another publication. For both commissioned and noncommissioned pieces, please note the following guidance.

Essays: MRB essays situate a thesis in a larger intellectual and cultural context. They are not narrowly focused academic articles but should engage both scholarly and lay readers. We encourage pitches of stimulating pieces and invite potential contributors to read our essays to note the range of styles and voices we welcome.

Reviews: MRB reviews are important intellectual contributions in their own right. Contributors are encouraged to use the book under review as a base from which to explore larger intellectual and cultural questions. Our reviews of academic literature translate the knowledge created in humanities for a broad readership that includes scholars as well as interested readers outside of academia. Readers of MRB can expect to find accessible, intelligent, and in-depth reviews that always keep the larger context in view and provide an engaging and enjoyable reading experience.

Technical Guidelines for Reviewers

  • Reviews normally range between 1200-4000 words, but the length can be discussed with the editors.
  • Bibliographic information should include the author’s name, title of book, publisher, pages, and price in USD.
  • Contributors should list their title, name, email address, and (if relevant) institution at the end of the review and provide a link to their institutional, personal, or academia.edu webpage.
  • Reviews should not contain footnotes or references to page numbers. Online literary magazines like MRB avoid notes but use in-line citations and especially hyperlinks: e.g., “John Smith had already argued this point ten years earlier, but Jane Doe has developed…” In this case, we would hyperlink the first clause to take the reader to that book’s details should they want it. Contributors should supply links to be approved by MRB.
  • Unicode fonts should be used for Roman as well as non-Roman alphabets.
  • Contributors are encouraged to make full use of the possibilities electronic publication provides, including hyperlinks to resources or individuals mentioned within the review, and media such as photographs or pictures.
  • Proper documentation indicating permission for the use of any media must be provided to the Subject Editor. Click here for a helpful discussion on the use of media.

All contributions go through an editorial process with the Senior Editorial Team and are reviewed by an expert in the area to ensure scholarly standards. The final decision to publish rests with the editorial board of MRB and will be made based on whether a contribution fits our vision. In rare instances of insoluble creative disagreement, MRB is under no obligation to publish and contributors will be free to seek publication elsewhere.

Archiving and Syndication: MRB supports the rights to one’s own work and encourages contributors to post archives of their reviews on personal and institutional websites. Please include a link to MRB with a mention of the publication details clearly on the page. MRB publishes all works under a Creative Commons license that freely allows the sharing and distribution of all materials. The license prohibits modification and use for commercial purposes and requires crediting MRB. Our material may also be syndicated by third-party publications, which serves to extend MRB’s reach.