Joachim Schrod writes:
 > No, it's not standard. Emphasis is done with italics, as in every
 > civilized country. In fact, the typesetter of the book in question
 > should be calfatered, forced to listen a few days to Modern Talking,
 > or some similar punishment.
 > But then, in the 30s and before, such crimes were quite common.


If you were typesetting in Fraktur, you had no choice but to use
letter-spacing.  The use of italics became possible only after the
abolition of Fraktur.