Skip to Main Content

Library update: Recent database changes

Learn more


This guide will give you guidance in researching poets and poetry. Here you will find books located in the MS State Library, e-books, databases for scholarly resources, and legitimate online Web resources. Follow the tabs on the side to find what you nee

Works Cited: A Quick Guide to the MLA 8th Edition

In 2016 the Modern Language Association released its latest update. Below are some of the changes according to the website linked below. 

Core Elements

Each entry in the list of works cited is composed of facts common to most works—the MLA core elements. They are assembled in a specific order.

  • Author.
  • Title of source.
  • Title of container,
  • Other contributors,
  • Version,
  • Number,
  • Publisher,
  • Publication date,
  • Location.


The concept of containers is crucial to MLA style. When the source being documented forms part of a larger whole, the larger whole can be thought of as a container that holds the source. For example, a short story may be contained in an anthology. The short story is the source, and the anthology is the container. Reminder: a stand-alone source, such as a print book or a film on disc or tape, is both source and container.

Other "source/container" relationships may include:

  • An article in a journal
  • A journal article in a database
  • A chapter in an edited book
  • A video on a website

Reference Examples

Note: proper MLA format requires a "hanging indent" of one-half inch for each citation in your "Works Cited" list.

Book (One to Two Authors)

Hamblin, Robert W. Living in Mississippi: The Life and Times of Evans Harrington. UP of Mississippi, 2017.

Costello, Brandon and Qiana J. Whitted. Comics and the U.S. South. UP of Mississippi, 2012.

Book (Three or More Authors) Intner, Sheila S., et al., Metadata and Its Impact on Libraries. Libraries Unlimited, 2006.
Journal Article in Print Spoth, Daniel. "Slow Violence and the (Post)Southern Disaster Narrative in Hurston, Faulkner, and Beasts of the Southern Wild." Mississippi Quarterly, vol. 68, nos. 1-2, Winter-Spring 2015, pp. 145-166.
Journal Article in an Online Database

Atkinson, Ted. "Faulkner on the Mississippi: Popular Currents of Realism in If I Forget Thee, Jerusalem." Southern Quarterly, vol. 52, no. 3, Spring 2015, pp. 46-62. Humanities International Complete,

Note: Use the "Permalink" in the database record, and delete the proxy information (, etc.) and the "http://" or "https://" from the beginning of the link. If a DOI (Digital Object Identifier) is provided, use that instead.

Anderson, David. "Consuming Memories: Food and Childhood in Postbellum Plantation Memoirs and Reminiscences." Food, Culture & Society, vol. 20, no. 3, Sept. 2017, pp. 443-461. SocINDEX with Full Text, doi:10.1080/15528014.2017.1288800.ds-live.

A Book Chapter or a Work in an Anthology (includes Literary Criticism Series, Current Controversies, Opposing Viewpoints, and other Undergraduate Research Center materials)

Hannah, Barry. "Testimony of Pilot." Mississippi Writers: Reflections of Childhood and Youth, edited by Dorothy Abbott, UP of Mississippi, 1985, pp. 275-298.

For sources previously published in a book or journal, you would cite both the original source and the container from which you retrieved it:

Chalmers, Rebecca. "Untangling The Wide Net: Welty and Readership." Short Story Criticism, edited by Jelana Krstovic, vol. 111, Gale, 2008, pp. 335-343. Originally published in Southern Literary Journal, vol. 35, no. 2, Spring 2003, pp. 89-106.

Gee, James Paul. "What Video Games Can Teach Us About Making Students Want to Learn." Popular Culture, edited by David M. Haugen and Susan Musser, Greenhaven Press, 2011, pp. 111-117. Originally published in Harvard Education Letter, vol. 21, no. 6, pp. 6-8.
Comic Book or Graphic Novel (authors, illustrators have equal role) March. By John Lewis and Andrew Aydin, illustrated by Nate Powell, book 1, Top Shelf Productions, 2013.
Article or Web Page on a Web Site "MLA Eighth Edition: What's New and Different." Purdue Online Writing Lab, August 2017,
YouTube Video "Broadway Carpool Karaoke ft. Hamilton & More." YouTube, uploaded by The Late Late Show with James Corden, 6 June 2016,
Podcast "A Blinking Light Up on the Mountain." Welcome to Night Vale, 15 Sept. 2013,


@msu_libraries. "We are so #HailState proud of @Dak and @HailStateWBK for their big wins at the @ESPYS tonight! Congratulations!" Twitter, 12 July 2017, 7:42 p.m.,

Television Show on Streaming Platform "Bigger and Better Things." Last Chance U, season 2, episode 7, 21 July 2017. Netflix,