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MLA Citations (9th ed.)

This guide will help you format your paper and cite resources according to MLA citation style.

Author Basics

The author of a work can be a writer, artist, or any other type of creator. The author can be an individual, a group of persons, an organization, or a government.

Always begin the entry with the author's last name, followed by a comma and the rest of the name, as presented in the work. End this element with a period (unless a period that is part of the author's name already appears at the end). (pp. 107-111)

Here are some examples:

Baron, Naomi S. "Redefining Reading: The Impact of Digital Communication Media." PMLA, vol. 128, no. 1, Jan. 2013, pp. 193-200.

Jacobs, Alan. The Pleasures of Reading in an Age of Distraction. Oxford UP, 2011.

Kincaid, Jamaica. "In History." Callaloo, vol. 24, no. 2, spring 2001, pp. 620-26.

Two Authors

When a source has two authors, include them in the order in which they are presented in the work. Reverse the first of the names as described above, follow it with a comma and and, and give the second name in normal order.  (pp. 111-112)

Here is an example: 

Dorris, Michael, and Louise Erdrich. The Crown of Columbus. HarperCollins Publishers, 1999.

Three or More Authors

When a source has three or more authors, reverse the first of the names as described above and follow it with a comma and et al. ("and others"). (p. 112)

Here is an example:

Burdick, Anne, et al. Digital_Humanities. MIT P, 2012.

Corporate Author

A corporate author is an institution, association, government agency, or other kind of organization. (p. 119)

Here is an example:

United Nations. Consequences of Rapid Population Growth in Developing Countries. Taylor and Francis, 1991.

When a work is published by an organization that is also its author, skip the author element and begin the entry with the title. List the organization only as publisher. (p. 119)

Here is an example:

Reading at Risk: A Survey of Literary Reading in America. National Endowment for the Arts, June 2004.