The Writing Center @ The University of Wisconsin - Madison

MLA Documentation Guide

Citing books, articles, and other sources parenthetically in your paper

In conjunction with the explanations about structuring and formatting in–text citations detailed here, this page provides example citations for how a range of different source types are correctly referenced according to MLA's citation guidelines.

  • Author's name in text

    Magny develops this argument (67-69).

  • Author's name in reference

    This argument has been developed elsewhere (Magny 67-69).

  • Quotation found in indirect or "secondhand" source

    The philosopher Alain states that "admiration is not pleasure but a kind of attention. . ." (qtd. in Magny 66).

  • Material found in indirect source

    Alain's words seem to dissociate admiration from pleasure (in Magny 66).

  • Two authors' names in reference

    The most notorious foreign lobby in Washington is the "Sugar Mafia" (Howe and Trott 134).

  • Reference to volume and page in multivolume work

    As a painter Andrea was "faultless" (Freedberg 1: 98).

  • Reference to whole volume

    In his second volume, Freedberg gives an account of Andrea's whole painting career.

  • Two works by same author on list of works cited

    Frye connects Burgess' A Clockwork Orange to romance tradition (Secular Scripture 110). And while this connection may be surprising given A Clockwork Orange's themes and content, Frye's unique perspective on the nature of genres sheds light on this unusual combination ("Rhetorical Criticism: Theory of Genres").

  • Two locations in same source

    Dabundo deals with this problem (22, 31).

  • Two sources cited

    This controversy has been addressed more than once (Dabundo 27; Magny 69).

  • Personal interview; name given in text

    Parsons addresses the need for physical education teachers to understand the relationship between physical activity and fitness.

  • Corporate author

    Many different types of organizations in the United States are involved in mediation and dispute resolution (Natl. Inst. for Dispute Resolution).

  • Quotation from a play with page numbers

    In A Raisin in the Sun, Walter doesn’t hide his disdain for his sister’s attitude towards his mother’s money: “the line between asking and just accepting when the time comes is big and wide—ain’t it!” he levels at Beneatha (Hansberry 37; act 1, scene 1).

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  • Quotation from a play with division and line numbers

    This is made clear by the Duke’s recommendation that the best response to grief is to move on (Othello 1.3.208–209).

  • Quotation from a poem

    Amy Quan Barry asks piercingly, “What is it to know the absolute value / of negative grace . . .?”

  • Quotation from a multi–page poem with line numbers

    It is at this point that Eliot first introduces the women in the room “talking of Michelangelo” (line 14).

  • Electronic source that uses paragraph numbers

    The semiconductor workplace is highly toxic (Ross par. 35).

  • Electronic source that uses chapter and section numbers

    "Once we start using a tool extensively, it also starts using us" (Rawlins ch. 1, sec. 1).