To cite a work that consists solely of a literary reading, follow the MLA template of core elements. Treat the author of the work as the “Author” element. If there is a narrator other than the author, list that person as an “other contributor” in the optional-element slot after the title. In the example below, the placement of Cusac’s name after the title tells your reader that Cusac reads only “The Bees,” not every poem presented on Poem of the Day.
Sullivan, Anne O. “The Bees.” Read by Anne-Marie Cusac. Poem of the Day, Poetry Foundation, 27 Aug. 2017, www.poetryfoundation.org/ podcasts/76357/the-bees.
When the narrator is the same as the writer, list the full name in the “Author” slot and the last name only in the “Other contributors” slot:
Obama, Barack. Dreams of My Father: A Story of Race and Inheritance. Narrated by Obama, Random House, 2005. Audiobook.
Whether the label before a contributor’s name–for example, edited by or translated by–is capitalized or lowercase depends on its position in the MLA template of core elements.
In the following example, the label is capitalized because the contributor’s name follows the “Title of source” slot. Since the title of a source is always followed by a period, the label before the contributor’s name must be capitalized:
Cervantes, Miguel de. Don Quijote. Translated by Burton Raffel, W. W. Norton, 1999.
In the example below, the label is lowercase because the contributor’s name follows the “Title of container” slot. Since the title of a container is always followed by a comma, the label before the contributor’s name must be lowercase:
Dostoevsky, Fyodor. Notes from the Underground. Notes from the Underground and The Gambler, translated by Jane Kentish, Oxford UP, 2008, pp. 1–124.
In other words, don’t capitalize labels before contributors’ names unless they follow a period or consist of words that would normally be capitalized.
To cite a podcast episode that you streamed on the Web, follow the MLA template of core elements. List the narrator or host in the “Author” slot and the title of the podcast episode in the “Title of source” slot. Then list the name of the podcast as the title of the container, the season and episode number—if applicable—and the publisher. If a date is given for the episode, list it; otherwise, provide the copyright date of the Web site. Then provide the URL.
Gladwell, Malcolm, narrator. “The Lady Vanishes.” Revisionist History, season 1, episode 1, Slate Group, 2016, revisionisthistory.com/seasons?selected=season-1.
If the podcast is contained within a larger Web site–in the case of some news programs, for example–list the information for the larger Web site in a second container.
Chang, Ailsa, host. “Why Scientists Can’t Explain All the Appeal of an Eclipse.” Morning Edition, NPR, 11 Aug. 2017. NPR, www.npr.org/2017/ 08/11/542753070/scientists-can-t-explain-all-the-appeal-of-an-eclipse.
If you listened to the podcast on an app such as iTunes, list the name of the app in the “Version” slot and provide the other information you see displayed on your device. In the app version of “The Lady Vanishes,” the season and episode numbers are not given and no publisher is listed, but a specific date is provided for the episode.
Gladwell, Malcolm, narrator. “The Lady Vanishes.” Revisionist History, iTunes app, 16 June 2016.
To cite a book chapter that your professor uploaded to a Web site, begin with the MLA template of core elements. List the author of the chapter and the chapter title. List the title of the Web site as the title of the container, not the title of the book, since you found the chapter on the Web site rather than in the book. Since your professor uploaded the material, list the professor’s name in the “Other contributors” slot. Then list the publisher of the Web site (if different from the Web site’s title), the upload date (if known), and the URL:
Levine, Caroline. “Hierarchy.” Blackboard, uploaded by Mary Smith, 10 Oct. 2017, blackboard.stonybrook.edu/.
To cite a handout, provide the title of the handout or a description of it:
French verb conjugations. Blackboard,uploaded by Valerie Marneffe, 6 Sept. 2017, blackboard.nyu.edu/.
Remember that a course management system such as Blackboard is a container only when it is the platform of publication for the work, as it is here. If your professor provides a link on Blackboard to an external site, then Blackboard is not the container–the external site is.
For more on when a Web site is a container, see our post, and stay tuned for our webinar on citing complicated Web sources.
To cite a comment in a public or private online forum, follow the MLA template of core elements. List the author of the comment and the title of the thread. Then list the name of the forum as the title of the container, the date of the comment, and the URL. If the forum is contained in another Web site, list the title of the Web site as the title of the second container and provide the URL as the location:
Patel, Marte. “Trouble Installing Editoria.” Editoria development Web forum, 12 June 2017. Google Groups, groups.google.com/a/ucpress.edu/forum/#!forum/ editoria-development.
As the MLA Handbook notes (1.2), a title like Dr. or Sir should not be included before a name mentioned in the text and is usually unnecessary to include in your works-cited-list entry.
You might, however, explain the qualifications of an author in the body of your essay if they are helpful in making your point or refuting a claim:
Although many continue to deny the dangers of fossil fuel emissions, James E. Hansen, a climate scientist and the former head of the NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies, argues that “[c]ontinued failure to phase out fossil fuel emissions will consign our children to a diminishing existence.”
Hansen, James E. “The Constitutional Right to a Healthier Climate.” The Boston Globe, 9 Mar. 2016, www.bostonglobe.com/opinion/2016/03/09/ the-constitutional-right-healthier-climate/0xTKyK1s5SaD0ne78YqRHL/ story.html.
If you discuss clip art from PowerPoint or another software program in your paper and need to create a works-cited-list entry for it, provide a description of the art in place of a title and list the name of the software program (e.g., PowerPoint) as the container. Then provide the software’s version name and number, the name of the publisher (omitting words such as Company or Corporation), and the copyright date. You will most likely find this information in the About or Help section of the software.
Gray cat. PowerPoint, Microsoft Office Professional Plus, version 14.0.7184.5000, Microsoft, 2010.
If, however, you reproduce the clip art in your paper, you can provide the citation information in a figure caption instead. Note that in a caption, all periods, except the last, are replaced by semicolons, so here the period after Gray cat is replaced by a semicolon.
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