MLA Style uses quoting, paraphrasing, and summarizing to cite a source in text. Both parenthetical and signal phrases are accepted forms for citing the author.
After a quote, add parentheses containing the authors name and a page number (if any)
Example: “The bullfrog is capable of performing enormous leaps, and it can jump several feet to seize an approaching dragonfly, butterfly, or moth” (Wrigley 115).
An alternative means to cite the source is a signal phrase
Example: As Gordon Wrigley writes, “The bullfrog is capable of performing enormous leaps, and it can jump several feet to seize an approaching dragonfly, butterfly, or moth” (115).
Indirect source Format
Indirect source: A source cited within another source.
Primary source: The source in which the quote was originally from.
Indirect source: The source that cited a quote from another work.
Primary source: Marcel Proust
Indirect source: Wolf
As Marcel Proust reminisced: "There are perhaps no days of our childhood we lived so fully as those . . . we spent with a favourite book (qtd. in Wolf 6).
Works Cited Page
In the works cited page you would include the citation of the indirect source and not the primary source, unless you are able to find the primary source of the quote. If you find the primary source, you can include that in your Works Cited.
|Type of Citation||In-Text Citation|
|One author||Signal or parentheses with author and page number|
|Two authors||Name both in signal or parentheses|
|Three or more authors||Name first author followed by et al.|
|Two of more works by same author||Reference the works in signal phrase and author in parentheses|
|Organization or Government||Name in Signal or parentheses, shorten known or long names|
|Author Unknown||Reference the source with shortened title in quote|
Source: MLA Handbook. 8th ed., Modern Language Association of America, 2016.