How do I handle prefixes such as pre- and post- in MLA style?

Note: This post relates to content in the eighth edition of the MLA Handbook. For up-to-date guidance, see the ninth edition of the MLA Handbook.

MLA style, which follows Merriam-Webster, does not use hyphens after most prefixes. We would write, for example, antiestablishmentcoauthor, nonlinear, and prealgebra. A hyphen is needed, however, before a capital letter (pre-Renaissance), when the term would be hard to recognize otherwise (anti-intellectual), and to avoid misreading (the hyphen in re-cover, meaning “cover again,” distinguishes the term from recover, meaning “recuperate”).