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MLA Format In-Text Citations AKA Parenthetical Citations!

What is an in-text citation?


Whenever you use another persons ideas or words in an essay, you want to let the reader know in your actual essay. We do this in a really short way inside the paper and give more details about the source at the end of your paper (this is called your Works Cited!)

What do I Need to Include in my In-Text Citation?


You have to let the reader know two things:
The authors last name The page numbers
Ex: (Jones 47). if the authors last name is Jones and the quote was on page 47

What if theres no author given?


Just leave that part blank!
(47).

What if theres no page number?


Just leave that part blank!
(Jones).

Other Special Circumstances


Two or three authors:
Just give all of the authors names
(Jones and Smith 47). (Jones, Smith, and Jackson 47).

More than three authors:


Give the first authors name and then et al (et al = Latin for and the rest)
(Jones et al 47).

You Can Give the Authors Name in the Signal Phrase Instead
You must always introduce a quote with what we call a signal phrase. The quote should never be the entire sentence. We usually dont include page numbers in the signal phrase. If the signal phrase includes the authors last name, you can just put the page number at the end.
Examples of signal phrases:
As Rodriguez states, There are many ways (47). According to Rodriguez, There are many ways (47). Rodriguez argues that there are many ways (47).

The Anatomy of a Quote


Signal Phrase Quotes when using a direct quote Parentheses Page number Punctuation As Rodriguez argues, We need to agree that the consequences should be appropriate and meaningful (141).