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MLA Style: Works Cited List

Order of References

The entries in the works cited list are usually arranged in alphabetical order by the last name of the first author listed on the source.

When ordering several works by the same author, the entries are arranged in alphabetical order by title of the work. 

Group authors, such as organization or associations, are alphabetized by the first significant word of the name (do not include The before the name of any organization in the works cited list). 

If there is no author at the start of the entry, the title determines the placement of the entry itself in the works cited list. Titles are alphabetized letter by letter, ignoring any AAn or The (or their equivalent in other languages).


The following information applies to all types of sources.

One Author

When you cite a work by one single author, list the author's last name followed by the first name.

Last Name, First Name.

Chomsky, Noam.


Two Authors

When you cite a work by two authors, list the names in the order they appear in the original source. Invert only the first author's name, follow it with a comma and and, then list the second author in normal order.

Last Name, First Name, and First Name Last Name.

Greenblatt, Stephen, and M. H. Abrams.


Three or More Authors

When you cite a work by three or more authors, list the first name inverted, then follow it with a comma and et al. (Latin abbreviation that means "and others"). 

Last Name, First Name, et al.

Haude, Sigrun, et al.


Corporate Author

When you cite a work by a corporate author (organization, institution, etc.), spell out its full name. If you cite a work by an agency or a division of a government, start the entry with the name of the government, followed by a comma and the name of the agency.

Corporate Author.

Government, Agency, Division.

United Nations.

United States, Congress, House.



Treat pseudonyms, including online usenames, as regular names. 





Editors and Other Contributors

In a reference to an edited book, place the editors' names (or the names of the other contributors) in the author's position followed by a label that describes the role. The descriptive label is in the plural for multiple contributors.

Last Name, First Name, editor.

Last Name, First Name, translator.

Greenblatt, Stephen, and M. H. Abrams, editors.


Several Works by the Same Author

When you cite two or more sources by the same author, give the name of the author in the first entry only. Type three hyphens in the following entries. The entries will then be arranged in alphabetical order by title.

Last Name, First Name.


Chomsky, Noam.




Proper formatting of the titles allows the reader to easily identify the type of source.

Titles in quotation marks are part of bigger works. In this category we can find articles, chapters, essays, poems, web documents, videos.

Titles in italics are self-contained and independent, such as books and journals, but also anthologies and digital platforms (databases).


To avoid unnecessary repetition when citing multiple essays or works from a collection, such as an anthology or a reader, you can use the so-called cross-references.

With cross-references you give the full entry of the anthology, and then you give abbreviated entries for the essays/works that are used from the anthology itself.


Braddon, Mary Elizabeth. "Eveline's Visitant." Devine, pp.115-125.

Devine, Harriet, editor. Nineteenth-Century Short Stories by Women : A Routledge Anthology. Routledge, 1998.

Edgeworth, Maria. "The Limerick Gloves." Devine, pp. 11-33.