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Inline citations (MLA parenthetical)

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General guidelines

In MLA style, writers place references to sources in the paper to briefly identify them and enable readers to find them in the Works Cited list. These parenthetical references should be kept as brief and as clear as possible.

  • Give only the information needed to identify a source. Usually the author's last name and a page reference suffice.
  • Place the parenthetical reference as close as possible its source. Insert the parenthetical reference where a pause would naturally occur, preferably at the end of a sentence.
  • Information in the parenthesis should complement, not repeat, information given in the text. If you include an author's name in a sentence, you do not need to repeat it in your parenthetical statement.
  • The parenthetical reference should precede the punctuation mark that concludes the sentence, clause, or phrase that contains the cited material.
  • Electronic and online sources are cited just like print resources in parenthetical references. If an online source lacks page numbers, omit numbers from the parenthetical references. If an online source includes fixed page numbers or section numbering, such as numbering of paragraphs, cite the relevant numbers.
MLA Citation Style  | Cornell University Library <>

Also see

Humanities | Research and Documentation Online 5th Edition


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Edited by

Christian Andrews
02/01/2012 9:56:48 AM

Added by

Christian Andrews
02/01/2012 9:50:25 AM

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