I use \setupheadertexts [][section][chapter][] to get the section- and chapter-title in the header of the odd- and even pages. How to change the font, like its size, or making it bold or italic? The way \setupheadertexts [][\it section][chapter][] does not work, as "section" is than interpreted as text, and not as variable.

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Now there is some info about styles on the wiki. –  phg Oct 17 '12 at 19:18

Rather than using an explicit font switch in \setupheadertexts it is better to set the style of the header (or other page markup areas like footer, top, and bottom) using \setupheader. If you want to change the style of all header elements use

\setupheader[style=italic]


If you want to use separate styles for left and right header, use

\setupheader[leftstyle=italic, rightstyle=bold]


Of course, like all setup commands that accept style key, you can use the color (and leftcolor and rightcolor) key to set the color as well.

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You can use \getmarking[section] instead. Since you use brackets inside brackets, you have to wrap it in an extra pair of braces.

\setupheadertexts
[] [{\italic\getmarking[section]}]
[{\italic\getmarking[chapter]}][]


Thanks. And how to change the size, like \tiny{} in LaTeX, I searched the manual for that briefly, but did not found the equivalent command. –  Mustafa Oct 17 '12 at 7:14