Citation Guide: Modern Language Association (MLA)

Media and Field Sources

1. Citing a Film or Video

Format:
Generally begin with the title of the film or recording. If you want to emphasize an individual’s role, such as the director or actor, list that name first. Always supply the name of the director (followed by a comma and the label “director”), the distributor, and the year of original release. You may also insert other relevant information, such as the names of the performers or screenplay writers, before the distributor.

Example:

Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance). Directed by Alejandro Gonzalez Iñárritu, performances by Michael Keaton, Emma Stone, Zach Galifianakis, Edward Norton, and Naomi Watts, Fox Searchlight, 2014.

Damon, Matt. The Martian. Directed by Ridley Scott, Twentieth Century Fox, 2015.

Format:
For videos found on the Web, give the URL after the publication information.

Example:

Fletcher, Antoine. “The Ancient Art of the Atlatl.” Russell Cave National Monument, narrated by Brenton Bellomy, National Park Service, 12 Feb. 2014, www.nps.gov/media/video/view.htm?id=C92C0D0A-1DD8-B71C-07CBC6E8970CD73F/.


2. Citing a Sound Recording or Audio Clip

Format:
Begin with the name of the person whose work you want to highlight: the composer, the conductor, or the performer. Next list the title, followed by the names of other artists (composer, conductor, performers). The recording information includes the manufacturer and the date.

Example:

Bizet, Georges. Carmen. Performances by Jennifer Larmore, Thomas Moser, Angela Gheorghiu, and Samuel Ramey, Bavarian State Orchestra and Chorus, conducted by Giuseppe Sinopoli, Warner, 1996.

Format:
If you wish to cite a particular track on the recording, give its performer and title (in quotation marks), and then proceed with the information about the recording. For live recordings, include the date of the performance between the title and the recording information. For recordings found online, include the URL, after the publication date.

Example:

Adele. “Hello.” 25. XL, 2015.

Goldbarth, Albert. “Fourteen Pages.” The Poetry Foundation, 15 Apr. 2016, www.poetryfoundation.org/features/audio/detail/89129/.


3. Citing a Television or Radio Program

Format:
Begin with the title of the episode in quotation marks. Then give the title of the program, italicized, and relevant information about the program, such as the writer, director, performers, or narrator. Then provide the episode number (if any), the network, and the date of broadcast. If the material you are citing is an interview, include the word “Interview” and, if relevant, the name of the interviewer.

Example:

“Federal Role in Support of Autism.” Washington Journal, narrated by Robb Harleston, C-SPAN, 1 Dec. 2012.

“The Key to Zen for Tony Bennett: ‘Life Is a Gift.’” Talk of the Nation, narrated by Neal Conan, NPR, 20 Nov. 2012.

Format:
If you accessed the program on the Web, include the URL after the date of publication.

Example:

“Take a Giant Step.” Prairie Home Companion, narrated by Garrison Keillor, American Public Media, 27 Feb. 2016, prairiehome.publicradio.org/listen/full/?name=phc/2016/02/27/phc_20160227_128/.


4. Lectures or Speeches

Format:
Last Name of Lecturer or Speaker, First Name of Lecturer or Speaker. "Title or Description of Speech/Lecture." Meeting and Sponsoring Organization (if applicable). Place of Event, Day Month (abbreviated version) Year of Event.

Example:

Sofos, John. "Food Safety in the 90's." Colorado State U. Ft. Collins, 23 Oct. 1998.


5. Interviews Conducted by the Writer

Format:
Last Name of Person You Interviewed, First Name of Person You Interviewed. Personal interview. Day(s) Month (abbreviated) Year of Interview.

Note: If your interview was conducted over the telephone or email, insert "Telephone interview" or "Email interview" in the place of "Personal interview."

Example:

Neuhoff, Christine S. Personal interview. 15 Sep. 1998.


6. Surveys Conducted by the Writer

Format:
Name of Survey. Personal Survey. Day Month (abbreviated version) Year of Survey.

Example:

Human Rights Ordinances Questionnaire. Personal survey. 5 Oct. 1998.


7. Citing a Work of Art, Photograph, or Other Image

Format:
Give the name of the artist; the title of the work (italicized); the date of composition; the name of the collection, museum, or owner; and the city. If you are citing artwork published in a book, add the publication information for the book. If you are citing a photograph, add the label “Photograph” after the city.

Example:

Bradford, Mark. Let’s Walk to the Middle of the Ocean. 2015, Museum of Modern Art, New York.

Feinstein, Harold. Hangin’ Out, Sharing a Public Beach, NYC. 1948, Panopticon Gallery, Boston, Photograph.

Format:
For online visuals, including charts or graphs, include the website (italicized), and the URL.

Example:

Hura, Sohrab. Old Man Lighting a Fire. 2015, Magnum Photos, www.magnumphotos.com/C.aspx?VP3=SearchResult&ALID=2K1HRG681B/.

Brazilian Waxing and Waning: The Economy. The Economist, 1 Dec. 2015, www.economist.com/blogs/graphicdetail/2015/12/economic-backgrounder/.


8. Citing an Advertisement

Format:
Provide the name of the product, service, or organization being advertised, followed by the usual publication information. End with the word “Advertisement.” For advertisements found online, include the URL before “Advertisement.”

Example:

AT&T. National Geographic, Dec. 2015, p. 14. Advertisement.

Toyota, The Root, Slate Group, 28 Nov. 2015, www.theroot.com/. Advertisement.


9. Citing a Cartoon

Format:
Treat a cartoon like an article in a newspaper or magazine. Give the cartoonist’s name, the title of the cartoon if there is one (in quotation marks), the publication information for the source, and the word “Cartoon.”

Example:

Zyglis, Adam. “City of Light.” Buffalo News, 8 Nov. 2015, adamzyglis.buffalonews.com/2015/11/08/city-of-light/. Cartoon.


10. Citing a Live Performance

Format:
Generally begin with the title of the performance. Then give the author and director; the major performers; and the theater, city, an date.

Example:

The Draft. By Peter Snoad, directed by Diego Arciniegas, Hibernian Hall, Boston, 10 Sept. 2015.


11. Citing a Personal Interview

Format:
Place the name of the person interviewed first, words to indicate how the interview was conducted (“Personal interview,” “Telephone interview,” or “E-mail interview”), and the date. (Note the MLA style is to hyphenate e-mail.)

Example:

Akufo, Dautey. Personal interview, 11 Apr. 2016.


12. Citing an Unpublished Letter

Format:
If the letter was written to you, give the writer’s name, the words “Letter to the author” (no quotation marks), and the date the letter was written. If the letter was written to someone else, give that name rather than “the author.”

Example:

Primak, Shoshana. Letter to the author, 6 May 2016.


13. Citing a Lecture or Public Address

Format:
Give the speaker’s name and title of the lecture (if there is one). If the lecture was part of a meeting or convention, identify that event. Conclude with the event information, including venue, city, and date. End with the appropriate label (“Lecture,” “Panel discussion,” “Reading”).

Example:

Smith, Anna Deavere. “On the road: A Search for American Character.” National Endowment for the Humanities, John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, Washington, 6 Apr. 2015. Address.

Format:
For lectures and public addresses found on the Web, provide the URL after the date. End with the appropriate label (“Lecture,” “Panel discussion,” “Reading”).

Example:

Khosla, Raj. “Precision Agriculture and Global Food Security.” US Department of State: Diplomacy in Action, 26 Mar. 2013, www.state.gov/e/stas/series/212172.htm/. Address.

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