Disclaimer: This is a typesetting question. I'm not asking for (La)TeX code.

I have a situation where it seems to be a good idea to separate a group of subsections from another group of subsections in the same section with an intermediate explanatory text.

\section{Operators of XYZ}
   In further publications, the definition and names of some of the operators changed as... 
   ...lengthy explanation of problems with the old definition...
   ...longer than a single sentence, more like 2-3 Paragraphs.

I could

  • put this commentary into an Info-Box, but this does not really show the affiliation with the original section.
  • introduce another level of hierarchy, which seems unnecessary, as the matching hierarchy level is already there.

I would prefer a more professional looking (preferably "text-only") solution.

Is there a typesetting convention for such a situation? What would you recommend?

Context: The document is a scientific text and will have >200 pages.

  • 2
    The TeX section headings don't affect the subsequent text. Is there any way that you're distinguishing text within a section from text within a subsection in the first place? If not, what does sameLevelAsSection mean?
    – Teepeemm
    Sep 7, 2022 at 21:15
  • You really want a further level. After \section add a \subsection with text that explains what follows; demote all \subsections you have to \subsubsections and in the middle start a new subsection. There is no “section level text“ (unless you indent the various levels, which makes for very poor typography).
    – egreg
    Sep 7, 2022 at 21:50
  • I use to put what is at sameLevelAsSection at top …because at bottom it's never clear. @egreg it's not only about typography (how it look) but really organisation (how it's structured, semantically) and sometimes when you have to deal with some other tools (suppose you convert to XML for some reason)
    – gildux
    Feb 5, 2023 at 22:17
  • 2
    This looks to me like an "aside". I'd be inclined to insert a recognizable, but not overwhelming, separator at top and bottom. (The box that you mentioned falls in the class I've termed "overwhelming".) Perhaps something like a "swelled rule" as shown in this TUGboat article. That's constructed with MetaPost, but tikz could no doubt be used for something similar. Jun 6, 2023 at 2:40

1 Answer 1


You say it is a typesetting (typography) question so consider how you would set this as normal text (no (sub)sections). What you have is a list and then an addition to the list.

"Our regular colours are red, blue and yellow. But for a special order we can supply orange and pink." This, for example, could be written along the lines as "Regular orders: Red, Blue, Yellow. Special orders: Orange, Pink."

In LaTeX terms then from your question:

 Some description
\section{Further operators ...}
Some description
  • The problem would be better described as "XYZ introduced the colors red, blue and yellow. Although all current works build upon this, the definition of red and yellow has changed over the years." The new definitions partially override the old ones, but knowledge of the old definitions will still be important to understand the following chapters.
    – Blaubär
    Feb 19, 2023 at 10:23

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