Typography - AMA Manual of Style

Subscriber Login

Forgotten your password?

Page of



Annette Flanagin

Page of

PRINTED FROM AMA MANUAL OF STYLE ONLINE (www.amamanualofstyle.com). © American Medical Association, 2009. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the license agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a title in AMA Manual of Style Online for personal use (for details see Privacy Policy). date: 26 November 2015

Typography is broadly defined as the composed arrangement and appearance of text and other elements on a surface that involves elements of design. The editor and graphic designer often cooperate in the process of creating the typography and design for a book, monograph, or journal (in print or online), with the goal of achieving a balance of form and readability. According to typographer Edmund Arnold, good design and typography for English-language publications follow the linear flow of the Latin alphabet and support the act of reading. The English language is read from left to right and from top to bottom. According to Arnold, when a reader of such language begins to read a printed page, the eyes first fall naturally to the top left corner and then move across and down the page, first from left to right and then in a right-to-left sweep to the next line, until reaching the bottom right corner. Any design or typographic element that forces the reader to work against this natural flow (reading gravity) interrupts the reading rhythm and should be avoided...

Access to the complete content on AMA Manual of Style requires a subscription or purchase. Public users are able to search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter without a subscription.

Please subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you have purchased a print title that contains an access token, please see the token for information about how to register your code.

For questions on access or troubleshooting, please check our FAQs, and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us.