This guide is intended to be a quick reference. For specific information, you should refer to the MLA Handbook. The examples below are consistent with the MLA Handbook, 9th edition, 2021.
The latest edition includes these major changes:
In addition to listing all the sources consulted during the writing of your paper on the Works Cited page, it is also necessary to identify what content was used, and where in the source it was found. MLA style uses an in-text citation or a parenthetical reference immediately following the borrowed content. If the author’s name is included in the text, do not repeat it in the citation. You must also include the page number where the information was found in the source. Below are two examples of parenthetical references.
|Author’s name included in the text||According to Heartney, Paine’s art is a result of observed contradictions between the interaction of nature and industrial development (18).|
|Author’s name included in the citation||Paine’s art is a result of observed contradictions between the interaction of nature and industrial development (Heartney 18).|
|Type of resource||In-text citation example|
Wordsworth stated that Romantic poetry was marked by a "spontaneous overflow of powerful feelings" (263).
Romantic poetry is characterized by the "spontaneous overflow of powerful feelings" (Wordsworth 263).
Wordsworth extensively explored the role of emotion in the creative process (263).
Best and Marcus argue that one should read a text for what it says on its surface, rather than looking for some hidden meaning (9).
The authors claim that surface reading looks at what is “evident, perceptible, apprehensible in texts” (Best and Marcus 9).
|Three or more authors||
According to Franck et al., “Current agricultural policies in the U.S. are contributing to the poor health of Americans” (327).
The authors claim that one cause of obesity in the United States is government-funded farm subsidies (Franck et al. 327).
|No author||We see so many global warming hotspots in North America likely because this region has "more readily accessible climatic data and more comprehensive programs to monitor and study environmental change . . ." ("Impact of Global Warming").|
The Works Cited page should list all materials that have been cited in the text of your paper. This list should be in alphabetical order by the author’s last name, or by title if there is no author. Main titles should be italicized. The first line of each entry should be flush with the left margin, and each additional line should be indented by one-half inch. The page should be single spaced and placed at the end of the paper.
With the latest edition, the citation style is focused on core elements of the work, rather than the format of the work. The following is a list of the core elements, including the proper punctuation, that you will be using to create your citations:
Title of source.
Title of container,
In an actual citation on your Works Cited page, it would look like this:
Lastname, firstname. Title. Title of container, other contributors, version, number, publisher, publication date, location.
|Type of resource||Example from works cited page|
|Book or exhibition catalog – single author||Heartney, Eleanor. Roxy Paine. Prestel, 2009.|
|Article from online database||
Kemske, Bonnie. “The Beauty of Imperfection.” Ceramic Review, 225, May/June 2007, pp. 30-33. ArtFullText. http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=asu&AN=505244932&site=ehost-live.
|Original work of art||Krasner, Lee. Celebration. 1960. Oil on canvas. Cleveland Museum of Art.|
|Article or essay from a book||
Holmes, Wendy. “Decoding Collage: Signs and Surfaces.” Collage: Critical Views, edited by Katherine Hoffman, UMI Research Press, 1989, pp. 193-212.
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