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MLA (Modern Language Association) Style, 8th Edition: In-text citations

 

 

Parentheticals

In-text citations are also called parenthetical references -- you can remember because the parenthetical reference is in parenthesis.

MLA uses author-page style. In your paper, you will use the author's last name and the page number of your quote. You will use the last name in either the sentence or in the parenthesis.

You can see both in use below:

"Our personalities are masks we wear to sell ourselves to others" (Berger 87).

In Ads, Fads, and Consumer Culture, Berger states "Our personalities are masks we wear to sell ourselves to others (87).

The first word in the bibliography entry will usually be the word (name) that goes in the parenthesis.

How to cite in multimodal projects

From MLA Handbook, Eighth Edition, 2016, p. 128.

In a slide-based presentation using software such as PowerPoint  or Keynote, we suggest including brief citations on each slide that uses borrowed material (quotations, paraphrases, images, videos, and whatever else you copy or adapt) and adding a works-cited list on a slide at the end.

. . .

In a video, you might overlay text at the bottom of the screen to provide your viewers with brief information about what they're seeing (the producer and title of a borrowed video clip, for instance, or the name of a person being interviewed) and include full documentation in your closing credits.

In a project on the Web, you might link from you citations to the online materials you cite, allowing a reader to follow references of interest. A works-cited list remains desirable as an appendix to the project, since it gives the reader an organized account of the full range of your sources.

In-text Ciitations

Give the author's last name either in the text or in the parenthetical. Put the page number in the parenthetical.

(Berger 82) OR (82)

Give both author's last names in the text or parenthetical. Put the page number in the parenthetical.

(Smith and Jones 16) OR (16)

List the first author's name follwed by et al. in either the text or the parenthetical. Follow with the page number.

(Smith et al. 116) OR (116)

Use an abbreviated version of the title in the parenthetical or the entire title in the text. Follow with the page number.

(Stepping Stones 62) OR (62)

("English Grammar" 25) OR (25)

Give the author's last name and first initial either in the text or in the parenthetical. Put the page number in the parenthetical.

entry 1: (B. Smith 26)   entry 2: (S. Smith 45)

If you use the author's names in the text, include the individual author's first initial.

Give the author's last name either in the text or in the parenthetical. Add a shortened title. Put the page number in the parenthetical.

Examples from OWL:

Citing two articles by the same author:

Visual studies, because it is such a new discipline, may be "too easy" (Elkins, "Visual Studies" 63).

OR

Lightenor has argued that computers are not useful tools for small children ("Too Soon" 38), though he has acknowledged elsewhere that early exposure to computer games does lead to better small motor skill development in a child's second and third year ("Hand-Eye Development" 17).

These are "quoted in" citations -- you have not looked at the original source but a source that quotes the original.

You will use qtd in before the author and page number.

(qtd. in Smith 26)

  • You will use the first item in the works cited entry. Sometimes that is the name of the album, music, video, or website.
  • If the title is long, abbreviate it.
  • If there aren't page numbers, don't put page numbers in the parenthetical. Unless there is a PDF, websites and other digital items won't have page numbers.
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