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How do I cite an illustration on an unnumbered page if there is no figure number?

In some cases, the unnumbered page is counted as a page but not numbered as such. If the unnumbered page is between 117 and 119, simply call it 118:

In book 4 of Paradise Lost, Satan observes Adam and Eve together in the garden. In William Blake’s illustration of this scene, the serpent is wrapped around Satan, who points suggestively at the first couple (Milton 118).
Work Cited
Milton, John. Paradise Lost. Edited by David Hawkes, Barnes and Noble Classics, 2004.

In some books, several images appear together. These are often printed on a different kind of paper from the surrounding text and not counted in the page numbering.

Published 18 April 2018

What should I include in parentheses if the author’s name is provided in a signal phrase and the source has no page numbers or other kind of part number?

As the MLA Handbook notes, “When a source has no page numbers or any other kind of part number, no number should be given in a parenthetical citation” (56). The following example illustrates this principle: 

“As we read we . . . construct the terrain of a book” (Hollmichel), something that is more difficult when the text reflows on a screen.
Work Cited
Hollmichel, Stefanie. “The Reading Brain: Differences between Digital and Print.” So Many Books, 25 Apr. 2013, somanybooksblog.com/2013/04/25/ the-readingbrain-differences-between-digital-and-print/.

If you provide the author’s name in a signal phrase when quoting or paraphrasing a work with no page or part numbers, . . .

Published 29 January 2018

How do I cite quotations that are on nonconsecutive pages?

Nonconsecutive page numbers are presented in the same order as the quotations to which they refer:

As Ann Smith notes, some scholars contend that “the sky is green,” but others claim that “the sky is red” (80, 120).

As Ann Smith notes, some scholars contend that  “the sky is red,” but others claim that “the sky is green” (120, 80).

When the work you are citing is not printed on consecutive pages, include specific page numbers in the in-text citation even though they are represented by a plus sign in the works-cited-list entry:

Smith, Ann. “Debates about the Color of the Sky.” . . .

Published 17 January 2018

If a page number includes letters in addition to a number, should I include the letters?

Yes. In the following example of a quotation from an early English work, the quotation appears on page 37v, so you would include both the number and the letter in your parenthetical reference:

In “Dumbe Man’s Academie,” John Bulwer writes, “The Dumbe hath the same passions as wee have for he hath the same potentialitye of the soule equal with us” (folio 37v).
Work Cited
Bulwer, John. “The Dumbe Man’s Academie.” British Library, London, MS Sloane 1788.

Published 11 January 2018

In-text citations in MLA style involve authors, titles, and page numbers. Can I also include the date of a work?

In MLA style, you must key works you discuss to the works-cited list. You may do so by mentioning the author in the text or in a parenthetical citation. If you refer to more than one work by the author or a work is anonymously written, your in-text references must specify the title. You are free to provide additional information, such as dates, but that information does not need to key to the works-cited-list entry:

In Orientalism (1978), Edward W. Said writes, “Men have always divided the world up into regions having either real or imagined distinction from each other” . . .

Published 5 December 2017

How do I cite a panel in a graphic novel or comic book that does not have page numbers?

If you are writing about a panel in a graphic novel or comic book without page numbers, provide readers with as much information as you can to direct them to the panel. This information might be a part or chapter number (“In a panel in chapter 3 . . .”) or, if the work is not formally divided, an approximate indication of the panel’s location (“Midway through the novel, we see a panel in which . . .” or “In the first third of the novel, the character is shown . . .”). If the work is short, this information may be omitted.

Published 27 July 2017

The work I’m citing doesn’t have a publication date or page numbers. Should I include the abbreviations n.d. (“no date”) and n. pag. (“no pagination”) in the works-cited-list entry?

No. Do not use placeholders for unknown information like n.d. (“no date”) and n. pag. (“no pagination”) unless your teacher asks you to do so.

(If facts missing from a work are available in a reliable external resource, they can be cited in square brackets; see section 2.6.1 of the MLA Handbook for more information.) . . .

Published 8 September 2016

I am citing a paginated journal article that appears online. Should I include the page range, the URL, or the DOI as the location element in the works-cited-list entry?

The location of an online work is typically indicated by a URL or DOI, one of which should be included. If the work is paginated and forms part of a larger work, such as an anthology or periodical, you may provide the page range in addition to the URL or DOI. You may elect to do so if it is useful for your reader to have more information about the work—for example, about its length, its sequence in the collection, or the fact that it can be navigated by pages. The entries below, for a work in a single container, show two acceptable ways to cite a paginated article in a journal that is published only online:

Berman, . . .

Published 11 August 2016

When citing a print dictionary in MLA style, do I include a page number?

Yes. Cite an entry in a print dictionary like a section of a larger work. Include the page number in the “Location” element of the MLA style template:
“Content.” Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary, 11th ed., Merriam-Webster, 2003, p. 269.
To cite an entry in an online dictionary, consider the URL the location:
“Content.” Collegiate Dictionary. Merriam-Webster, 2016, unabridged.merriam-webster.com/collegiate/content.
See page 42 of the MLA Handbook for guidelines on when it’s permissible to omit a publisher’s name, as in the above example.

Whether you’ve consulted an entry from a print or an electronic dictionary, . . .

Published 23 June 2016

What kind of number do I put in the parenthetical citation for a poem—a page number, a line number, or another part number?

The ultimate goal is to be concise and to cite what is most useful to the reader. For quotations from a poem in a print or online source, there are three common possibilities:

If the poem is short (no longer than a page or its online equivalent), do not cite any number in the text. The page number or Web location that appears in the poem’s works-cited-list entry will be specific enough to identify a borrowing from such a short text.
If the poem is longer than a page (or its online equivalent) and is published with explicit numbers marking lines or other parts (e.g., . . .

Published 29 February 2016

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