Given the following sentence:
While animals do not exhibit inspiration, inspiration is nonetheless the result of small primal components that we have evolved to feel.
Does one need commas before and after "nonetheless" in the previous sentence?
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I'm guilty of frequently citing The Elements of Style by Strunk & White on this site, but here again I think their advice is appropriate.
On dealing with a single word that may appear to be parenthetical, and whether to encapsulate it in commas as such:
It is frequently hard to decide whether a single word, such as however, or a brief phrase, is or is not parenthetic. If the interruption to the flow of the sentence is but slight, the writer may safely omit the commas.
In the example sentence you provided, the interruption is indeed brief, so you can omit the commas. However, as the guide states, this is a matter of style, and you are free to decide that you want it to be parenthetical if you choose. In other words, no you do not need the commas.